Arts & Culture, Food, Santa Barbara »

Three foodie films to check out at the SBIFF

Posted February 3, 2016 by | 0 Comments | ]
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The 31st annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival kicks off this week. One category within the festival, called “Screen Cuisine,” spotlights films centered on food. According to Matt Kettmann, editor at the Santa Barbara Independent and Wine Enthusiast, this year’s food film lineup is particularly strong.

Here are some of his top picks:

City of Gold: A portrait of Pulitzer Prize-winning food writer Jonathan Gold as he eats his …

Environment, Food, Santa Barbara »

Meet at the market: mussels made simple

Posted January 29, 2016 by | 0 Comments | ]
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Each week we meet up with Katie Hershfelt of Cultivate Events as she chats with farmers, chefs and shoppers at the Santa Barbara Certified Farmers’ Market.
This week, she spoke with Chris Shemet, who sells Hope Ranch Mussels caught by fisherman Bernard Friedman, about the best, and simplest ways to cook local mussels.

Mussels on the stove (for two):

“De-beard” the mussel – grasp the byssal thread (the hairy bit that …

Arts & Culture, News, Santa Barbara »

What happened to Spanish-language films in Santa Barbara?

Posted January 26, 2016 by | 0 Comments | ]
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Santa Barbara’s Granada Theater isn’t known for playing movies. Most of its audience comes to see operas, ballets and symphony orchestras.
But, on occasional Sunday afternoons Latino families and friends sprinkle into the foyer to watch classic Mexican films, as part of the Granada’s new Epoca de Oro Mexican Film Series.

On one such Sunday in December, Raul Gill grabs popcorn for himself and his five friends. They’re excited to …

Arts & Culture, Santa Barbara »

Finger picking musician stops by Santa Barbara

Posted January 22, 2016 by | 0 Comments | ]
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Guitarist Tommy Emmanuel isn’t a stranger to life on tour. He first hit the road when he was 6 years old, playing shows throughout his home country of Australia alongside his family band.
“We were very poor, and we traveled around in two cars with our gear on the roof,” said Emmanuel. “We either slept on the ground under the stars, or in a tent.”
Today’s tours look …

Environment, Food, Santa Barbara, Water and the Drought »

Meet at the market: Singing the Goleta drought blues

Posted January 22, 2016 by | 0 Comments | ]
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Each week we meet up with Katie Hershfelt of Cultivate Events as she chats with farmers, chefs and shoppers at the Santa Barbara Certified Farmers’ Market.
This week, she spoke with Jack Motter, who started Ellwood Canyon Farms in Goleta in 2009. The drought has hit his farm hard, and the recent decision by the Goleta Water District to raise agricultural water rates has left Motter questioning the …

Food, Santa Barbara »

Documentary dives deep into the wine world

Posted January 20, 2016 by | 0 Comments | ]
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What’s the oldest bottle of wine you’ve ever enjoyed? Did it look like this one?
Most would say no.

In 2012, wine geeks and wine-swirling amateurs alike tuned into director Jason Wise’s Somm, about four disciplined wine enthusiasts studying for the notoriously difficult Master Sommelier exam.
Wise’s new follow-up documentary, Somm: Into the Bottle, takes us into the world of the wine industry, from sun soaked vineyards to dusty bottles in …

Arts & Culture, Santa Barbara »

Guitarist Raul Midón plays outside the jazz box

Posted January 16, 2016 by | 0 Comments | ]
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Guitarist Raul Midón pulls from several styles and influences. Although jazz is his number one passion (he stole a Charlie Parker record from his dad as a kid, and has been hooked ever since), he’s also inspired by pop and rock artists, like Jason Mraz and the Who.
“I made a choice when I moved to New York City, that I didn’t want to live like that,” …

Food, Santa Barbara »

Meet at the market: Cold snaps create vibrant citrus

Posted January 15, 2016 by | 0 Comments | ]
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Each week we meet up with Katie Hershfelt of Cultivate Events as she chats with farmers, chefs and shoppers at the Santa Barbara Certified Farmers’ Market.
This week, the smell of citrus was in the air. A couple winter cold snaps in December and January have made for vibrantly colored, sugar-packed fruit.
“Citrus usually likes cold this time of year. But just a little bit,” said Marguerita Smith from …

Environment, Santa Barbara »

Locals only compete in El Niño waves this weekend

Posted January 15, 2016 by | 0 Comments | ]
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This weekend, surfers from the 805 only will duke it out at Rincon Beach, at the 33rd annual Rincon Classic.
Unlike many sports competitions, such as the Super Bowl or March Madness, the Rincon Classic has no scheduled date. Instead, there’s an eight-week “waiting period.” Each Wednesday, contest coordinators decide whether the upcoming weekend will be the one.
This year, for the first time since 2009, they chose the …

Food, Santa Barbara »

Fermenting in clay at Santa Barbara winery

Posted January 14, 2016 by | 0 Comments | ]
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Zaca Mesa Winery is one of the oldest wineries and vineyards in Santa Barbara County. They planted their first grapes in 1973.
In November 2015, commercial real estate mogul John Cushman announced that his winery, vineyard and surrounding ranch were on the market for $32 million.
Meantime, vineyard workers are still experimenting with different winemaking trends, like fermenting and aging their Syrah in ceramic pots. This Old …

Education, Santa Barbara »

The role of a library in the digital age

Posted January 13, 2016 by | 0 Comments | ]
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The newly renovated UCSB Library, which had not undergone any changes in more than 35 years, opened its doors last week. Within the 60,000 square feet of new space lies diverse work spaces, more electrical outlets, group study rooms, a cafe and specialized areas for data-intensive projects and special-collection storage.
“The design of the building is intended to affirm the library’s position as the legitimate crossroads of the campus,” said University Librarian …

Food, News, Santa Barbara »

Meet at the market: canned with a kick

Posted January 8, 2016 by | 0 Comments | ]
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Each week we meet up with Katie Hershfelt of Cultivate Events as she chats with farmers, chefs and shoppers at the Santa Barbara Certified Farmers’ Market.
This week, she noticed some new homemade chili jellies, jams and sauces for sale at the Shepherd Farms stand.

The impetus for these value-added products actually came out of a problem: very few people were buying Tom’s hot peppers.
“This year we grew a lot …

Santa Barbara »

Cash pours in as Santa Barbara wine industry ages

Posted January 6, 2016 by | 0 Comments | ]
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The wine industry employs over 5,000 people and contributes $1.7 billion to the economy of Santa Barbara County, says a report released this week by the Santa Barbara Vintners’ Association. Stonebridge Research, which has completed similar economic-impact reports for 24 other wine regions since 2004, did the study.
Matt Kettmann, editor at the Santa Barbara Independent and Wine Enthusiast, says the report provides a factual and timely starting …

Environment, Power and Water, Santa Barbara, Water and the Drought »

My El Niño plan

Posted January 5, 2016 by | 0 Comments | ]
Photo: Ingrid Taylar/Flickr

No one knows exactly what impact this winter’s El Niño forecast will have on Southern California. But, despite the uncertainty, many people in Santa Barbara are getting ready. They may be lugging sandbags, fixing roofs or prepping crops. We spoke with different people with different plans for the wet skies, heavy winds and strong seas that may be coming our way. (Reporting by  Linda …

Arts & Culture, Santa Barbara »

Singing the shades of California

Posted December 23, 2015 by | 0 Comments | ]
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If you’re planning a California road trip, here’s a game to play. Try to hit up every spot artist David Lowery sings about in the band Cracker’s latest double album, Berkeley to Bakersfield. It won’t be easy.
“We’re definitely playing homage to our roots, but also something greater than that. It’s sort of the climate, culture and atmosphere of different parts of California,” said Lowery about …

Education, Environment, Politics, Santa Barbara »

A drop in oil won’t put Santa Barbara in the red

Posted December 21, 2015 by and | 0 Comments | ]
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Santa Barbara County has a complicated – and at times, turbulent– relationship with oil. In May, the Refugio oil spill resulted in roughly 140,000 gallons of crude gushing over state beaches. Environmentalists rallied and called for an end to oil production in the region.  At the same time, these corporations remain among the top tax payers in the county – which raises the question: how …

Santa Barbara »

One Thing in Santa Barbara: Philanthropy

Posted December 18, 2015 by | 0 Comments | ]
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From food and nightlife to the environment and philanthropy, what were the most important stories and trends of the year in Santa Barbara? Five of our sharpest local observers weigh in on the one thing that shaped 2015.

According to nonprofit consultant Judy Hawkins, in 2015’s philanthropic world she saw Santa Barbara businesses and nonprofits working together in new and creative ways.
Businesses give back to the community for two reasons, …

Arts & Culture, Santa Barbara »

One Thing in Santa Barbara: Arts

Posted December 17, 2015 by | 0 Comments | ]
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From food and nightlife to the environment and philanthropy, what were the most important stories and trends of the year in Santa Barbara? Five of our sharpest local observers weigh in on the one thing that shaped 2015.

According to Charles Donelan, arts editor at the Santa Barbara Independent, the biggest arts event of the year was on August 3, when the New York Philharmonic orchestra played a …

Food, Santa Barbara »

One Thing in Santa Barbara: Dining

Posted December 16, 2015 by | 0 Comments | ]
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From food and nightlife to the environment and philanthropy, what were the most important stories and trends of the year in Santa Barbara? Five of our sharpest local observers weigh in on the one thing that shaped 2015.

Matt Kettmann, editor at the Santa Barbara Independent and the Wine Enthusiast, chose the rise of ramen and craft beer as the top food and drink trends of the …

News, Politics, Santa Barbara »

One Thing in Santa Barbara: Politics

Posted December 15, 2015 by | 0 Comments | ]
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From food and nightlife to the environment and philanthropy, what were the most important stories and trends of the year in Santa Barbara? Five of our sharpest local observers weigh in on the one thing that shaped 2015.

According to California political writer Jerry Roberts, the top story in local politics this year was the announcement of Democratic Congresswoman Lois Capps‘ retirement. Currently in her ninth term, Capps succeeded her …

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