Dining: Time of Plenty

 Delicious happenings around the North Bay

With stone fruit, melons and ears of corn filling up market stalls and produce sections, there is no doubt it’s summertime in the North Bay. Here are a few ways to take full advantage of the luscious tastes of the season and beyond.

For those old enough to remember some favorite restaurants in San Francisco during the dotcom bubble, Gordon’s House of Fine Eats in the SoMa/Mission neighborhood (previously referred to as the “Multimedia Gulch”) tops many a list. Though it’s long gone and founder Gordon Drysdale has moved on to Pizza Antica, Sweetwater and Scoma’s, he will be sharing his considerable talents with lucky guests in the Key Room on Thursday, Aug. 9, at 6:30pm.

Check out the menu he has planned: spicy, chilled beet soup with lemongrass, red curry and coconut cream; hot-smoked New Zealand–farmed king salmon with nectarines, crispy polenta, caramelized onions and aged balsamic; and warm bread and butter pudding, with white chocolate crème anglaise and crispy macadamia nuts. The cost is $60. Learn more here: www.cookingschoolsofamerica.com/freshstartscookingschool.

For apple lovers, there are a couple of opportunities in the North Bay that show off the versatility of this beloved fruit. At Apple Garden Farm in Tomales, the only producer of hard cider in Marin County, owners Jan and Louis Lee conduct weekend tours of their apple orchard followed by an organic hard-cider tasting. The cost is $5 per couple. Admission costs are waived if cider is purchased. Visit applegardenfarm.com for more information.

Once known as the Gravenstein Apple Capital of the World, Sebastopol still celebrates its famous heirloom apples. Now in its 45th year, the Gravenstein Apple Fair, running Aug. 11–12 at Ragle Ranch Park in Sebastopol, offers a weekend of live music, local food, wine and cider. Check it out at gravensteinapplefair.com.

For food-loving out-of-town guests, take them on a Flavors of West Marin Tour, where everything from oysters, cheese, bread and mead are on full display. Tours are available Thursdays and Fridays from 10am to 3pm, and Saturdays and Sundays from 10:30am to 3:30pm. The cost is $195 per person. Learn more at foodandfarmtours.com.

Another quintessential Marin summer excursion before the fog begins to roll in includes lunch or dinner at Sausalito’s Bar Bocce. Snag an outdoor table, get in line for a bocce ball court and order a crisp glass of rosé. Sourdough crust pizzas, seating a stone’s throw from the water’s edge and a chill Sausalito vibe make this one of Marin’s very best. Check it out at barbocce.com.

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