It’s basketball season so I’m using Monkey’s away games as an opportunity to embark on some real food culinary adventures around Sonoma County. Last weekend we checked out Peter Lowell’s in Sebastopol and this weekend we headed to Napa. First stop was Oxbow Market across the train tracks on First Street.
The indoor Oxbow Market is a great place to visit, especially at this time of year because you can while away a couple of hours without having to venture outside. There’s an eclectic range of purveyors from Kara’s Cupcakes to Pica Pica and the Hog Island Oyster Company, a couple of culinary antique stores, and lots of places to get supplies for the pantry from The Olive Press to the Whole Spice Company.
We started out by ordering Monkey a grilled corn pocket stuffed with grilled chicken from Pica Pica. Aside from the long wait and the lack of organization at the counter, he seemed to enjoy his pre-game carb and protein-loading.
Then we wandered around the market, stocking up on some organic cinnamon. I can’t get enough of the stuff these days. It’s a great way to keep your blood sugar levels steady and adds a hint of exotic sweetness to everything from steamed almond milk to natural yoghurt or soup. Perfect detox food and a great way to get transport your palate to the Mediterranean and beyond.
I was thrilled to see that Kara’s offers gluten-free cupcakes and have filed a little memo in my brain to return for a treat on a rainy day.
On this occasion though, I couldn’t resist a dark chocolate treat from Anette’s reasoning that the nuts would offer a little protein to sustain me through the basketball game and until our reservation at Ad Hoc in Yountville. (I don’t claim this to be reasoning routed in nutritional science).
As usual, we were running short on time (I suffer from a chronic form of optimism that leads me to believe I can pack into one hour what most people would do in half a day) we had to cut our visit short, but not without a quick whirl through the Fatted Calf – a meat-lover’s heaven on earth – which is just around the corner from the market.