Written by Claire McArthur 

 

Don’t let the weather fool you: There are still farms in the region churning out delicious local produce and goods using hoop houses, greenhouses, and indoor grows. And thanks to grocery stores and markets committed to selling local all year round — Great Basin Community Food Co-op, Fallon Food Hub, and Reno’s only winter market, Riverside Farmers Market, to name a few — it’s easy to support farmers year round.

In my home, winter is also known as soup season, which I usually enjoy at dinner with a platter of aged-white-cheddar grilled cheese or a simply dressed salad of leafy greens.

Any soup aficionado worth their salt knows that the secret to a good soup is layering in flavors starting from the very base. Since 1979, Peri & Sons has been growing white, red, yellow, sweet, and organic onions — an essential for almost any soup — in Yerington. The Peri family keeps its customers inspired by providing onion-forward recipes inspired by cuisines from around the world. One of their latest dishes is Augadito de Pollo, a hearty Peruvian chicken-and-rice soup with many opportunities to utilize local produce — and perhaps some of that summer produce that you smartly stored away in your cellar or freezer.

Peruvian Soup BowlAugatido de Pollos is a hearty Peruvian soup that you can make using locally sourced onions, carrots, chicken, and broth. Photo courtesy of Peri & Sons.

 

Augadito de Pollo

(courtesy of Peri & Sons in Yerington. Serves 8 to 10)

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 large poblano pepper, seeded, cored, and diced

1 small white onion, finely chopped

1 serrano or jalapeño pepper, seeded, cored, and minced

5 cloves garlic, minced

6 cups chicken stock, divided

2 cups cooked chicken, shredded or diced

1 pound Yukon gold potatoes, diced

2 large carrots, peeled and diced

½ cup white or brown rice

½ cup peas

2 teaspoons ground cumin

1 bunch fresh cilantro leaves

Juice of 1 lime

Extra fresh cilantro leaves, chopped, and thinly sliced green onions, for garnish

Heat oil in a large stock pot over medium-high heat. Add the diced poblano pepper and white onion; sauté 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onion is softened and translucent. Stir in minced serrano/jalapeño pepper and garlic; cook 2 more minutes. Transfer entire mixture to a large blender, and set aside to cool.

Return stock pot to heat. Add 5 cups chicken stock, cooked chicken, potatoes, carrots, rice, peas, and cumin; stir to combine. Bring mixture to a simmer, then reduce heat to medium-low so that soup maintains low simmer. Cover partially and cook, stirring occasionally, for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the potatoes are fork tender and the rice is cooked.

Add cilantro leaves, lime, and remaining 1 cup chicken stock to blender along with pepper mixture. Purée 1 to 2 minutes or until the mixture is completely smooth. Stir purée into soup, garnish with cilantro and green onions, and serve warm.

 

Seasonal Produce in Reno-Tahoe

Here’s what’s fresh and available from local farms right now:

Peri & Sons (Yerington)

Variety of onions

Ital Farms (Reno)

Assortment of microgreens

Dayton Valley Aquaponics (Dayton)

Tomatoes

Cucumbers

Lattin Farms (Fallon)

Winter squash

Avanzino Farms (Reno)

Winter squash

Beef

Prema Farm (Loyalton)

Arugula

Tatsoi

Braising Mix

Turnips

Radishes

Carrots

MaryAlice’s Sprouts Farm (Reno)

Sprouts

Kennedy Ranch (Lamoille)

Chicken

Chicken broth

Bare Ranch (Gerlach)

Eggs

Palomino Valley Chicken and Eggs (Reno)

Eggs

 

sponsored content

Written by Jane K. Callahan 
Photos courtesy of Camp Richardson

 

JT Basque Bar & Dining Room in Gardnerville. Photo by Jeff Dow

JT Basque Bar & Dining Room in Gardnerville. Photo by Jeff Dow

 

Visitors and locals alike who want to dive into Nevada’s history on a full belly should consider beginning where it all started: Carson Valley. It’s the oldest region in the state, which includes the first town ever established here in 1851. Holding true to its wild, western roots, the area has evolved into a prime hub for epicurean adventures. And with its proximity to Tahoe, it’s the perfect place to get your calories back.

 

“Carson Valley has done an amazing job of bringing new and exciting dining options to life while also preserving the history of our buildings and the traditional ways of preparing food and drink,” says Jan Vandermade, executive director of Visit Carson Valley. “Travelers can go elsewhere for bells and whistles, but for history-loving foodies, it would be hard to argue there’s a better locale for an updated but old-town feel than Carson Valley ... and it’s really good!”

 

Here are just a few top spots for a unique blend of the old and new, whether you’re there for a day trip or the week:

 

Sips

Photo courtesy of Battle Born Wine & Whiskey

Photo courtesy of Battle Born Wine & Whiskey

Named after Nevada’s addition to the United States by way of the Union Army more than 150 years ago, Battle Born Wine & Whiskey is a decade-old business located in a historic residence, constructed in Virginia City in 1880 and moved by wagon. Despite its long history (and journey), this venue constantly is serving up new palate pleasers and boasts more than 2,000 labels on a weekly rotation. Run by sommelier Troy Philips — who always is happy to tell you what’s coming next — Battle Born carries locally made spirits, a roster of international wines and Champagnes, and more than 500 craft beers and ciders. And if you love what you taste, Troy offers a deep discount on crates.

 

1448 Hwy. 395, Gardnerville • 775-782-7684 • Battlebornwine.com

Open 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. Mon. – Sat.

 

If you’re making a day of it, add Bently Heritage Estate Distillery to the itinerary. Located in a 100-year-old flour mill, the building was remodeled after old public houses but as a LEED-certified structure. Here, grains are grown for distillation the old way — sustainably. Take a one-hour tour Thursday through Sunday between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m., and enjoy bespoke cocktails during tasting room hours, 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. Thurs. and Sun., 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. Fri. – Sat.

1601 Water St., Minden • 775 210-5097 • Bentlyheritage.com

More of a beer aficionado? Swing by Minden Meat and Deli, offering a huge selection of craft beers, with 31 varieties on tap. Wash down some burgers, which are made fresh daily using locally raised beef.

1595 Hwy. 395, Minden • 775-783-9999 • Mindenmeat.com

Open 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. Mon., 9 a.m. – 8 p.m. Tues. – Sun.

Photo courtesy of Genoa Bar and Saloon

Photo courtesy of Genoa Bar and Saloon

 

History buffs shouldn’t miss a stop at the state’s oldest watering hole, the Genoa Bar and Saloon. While patrons of yore may have tied their horses up outside, today the owners have found success in their outdoor porch parties.

 

2282 Main St., Genoa • 775-782-3870 • Genoabarandsaloon.com

Open 10 a.m. – midnight Fri. – Sat., -Sat from 10am to midnight, 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. Sun. – Thurs.

 

Bites
Genoa local Lois Wray decided to open a cheese and charcuterie outpost in the city’s landmark The Pink House, a gothic revival-style building that needed some TLC since its construction in 1855 (making it one of the first buildings to go up in the town). Wray offers a fresh take on food and drink, serving traditionally cured meats alongside goodies for modern tastes and specialty coffees. Much like eateries 100 years ago, its artisan menu is based on seasonal produce. Try the mushroom tart and cheesemonger’s grilled cheese.

193 Genoa Lane, Genoa • 775-392-4279 • Thepinkhousegenoa.com

Open 11 a.m. – 8 p.m. Tues. – Sat., 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Sun.

Photo courtesy of J.T. Basque Bar & Dining Room

Photo courtesy of J.T. Basque Bar & Dining Room

 

If you’re looking for large portions of exotic food, consider venturing into J.T. Basque Bar & Dining Room, which serves up multi-course, family-style meals in the Basque tradition — a result of the significant population of the European region’s shepherds who immigrated to Nevada in the mid-1800s. Where else in Carson Valley can you share locally grown veggies, bottomless soup bowls, roasted rabbit, and pig’s feet, with a glass of picon punch? Only here.

 

1426 Hwy. 395, Gardnerville • 775-782-2074 • Jtbasquenv.com

Serving lunch 11:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. Mon. – Fri., 11:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. Sat. Dinner 5 p.m. – 9 p.m. Mon. – Fri., 4:30 – 9 p.m. Sat.

 

1862 Saloon and Bar at David Walley’s Resort marries rustic Nevada saloon culture with updated elegance in its dining room, serving three meals a day (and live entertainment most Friday and Saturday nights). Diners can enjoy aged steak or fresh salmon, to name just two of its mouthwatering menu items, amid the ambiance of a historic lodge. Digest with a dip in the nearby hot springs, which have been there for way longer than the town itself.

 

2001 Foothill Road, Genoa • 775-782-8155 • Davidwalleys1862.com

Open daily, 7:30 a.m. – 9 p.m., NV 89411..

 

Photo courtesy of 1862 Saloon & Bar

Photo courtesy of 1862 Saloon & Bar

If you desire a sweet ending to your day, stop into the Chocolate Shoppe, which carries traditional goods such as butter toffee alongside a more contemporary stash of CBD chocolates. With the goal of making sure that “it looks as good as it tastes,” this family-owned spot drums up images of an old-school candy store.

 

Mon. – Fri. 9am–5:30pm and Sat. 9:30am–5pm. 1363 Hwy. 395, “Sweet” 7. Gardnerville • 775-267-1002 • Chocolateshoppe.us

 

Jane Callahan

Jane K. Callahan is a freelance journalist and Nevada resident who insists on cooking very complicated recipes and messing them up — which is why she knows so much about local dining.

Tasty Tastings and Fine Presents Galore
The Flavor Studio brings gourmet to a whole new level this holiday.

Written by Heidi Bethel
Photos courtesy of The Flavor Studio

Curated food-and-drink experiences and luxurious gifts unite at The Flavor Studio in South Reno. Established by several local food lovers, this unique place brings expertly paired nosh to life with not-so-common wine and spirits for memorable public and private happenings, as well as special gifts this season.

 

Elegant Events

Sake, sushi, and soy sauce tastings. Italian wine with homemade pasta. Tequila alongside gourmet tacos complete with house-made tortillas. With space to accommodate up to 35 people, The Flavor Studio brings creative flair to fine foods, wine and spirits affairs. Celebrating themes that highlight various dishes and drinks makes each event special.

“The food always is something exceptional that you wouldn’t find any place in Reno,” explains Laurel Pine, chef and curator at The Flavor Studio. “What we’re offering is an experience not offered anywhere else in town. We have a great lineup of events coming up that focus on tastes of the season.”

Events rounding out the year include Bubbles and Luxury Appetizers on December 27, which promises to bring together delicious faire and can’t-miss drinks. Pine says The Flavor Studio also is available for private events, for which the team creates experiences specific to the host’s vision. While the calendar still is in the works for 2020, attendees can expect more memorable pairing events and winemaker dinners.

 

Tasteful Giving

Whether looking for an interesting bottle of wine or basket of delicious wares, Pine and others at The Flavor Studio marshal superb preferences in gift giving.  

“We taste everything before we carry it and don’t have anything here that we wouldn’t give to our loved ones,” Pine notes.

Opulent gifts include:

  • 2007 Vintage Cava from Spain in a beautiful gift box for $41.99
  • Penfold’s “Grandfather” Rare Tawny (minimum average blended age is 20 years), 92 points Robert Parker for $97.99

Penfolds Tawny in a bottle

A bottle of Penfolds Tawny

 

  • Highly rated Italian wine gift basket with three Italian olive oil bottles in blood orange, lemon, and basil for $90.97

Holiday Wine Gifts in a wooden basket

 

  • Black River Russian caviar, packed in house to order, price based on tin size.

oscietra caviar in an open dish with a spoon on ice

 

With the hustle of the season in full effect, book a tasting appointment to discover some amazing, exclusive foodstuffs and wow friends and family with special treats under the tree.

The Flavor Studio Logo 300x300

 

For private tastings and event tickets, visit Theflavorstudio.com, or call 775-525-5898 to make a reservation.

WRITTEN BY AMANDA BURDEN
PHOTOS COURTESY OF SHEA EVANS

TheVoyager02 fav 

If you like Nevada beer and spirits — and the people who make them — they REALLY need your help before April 10! AB-431 is a dangerous bill to their livelihoods and to our growing local beer and spirits culture. Please register your disapproval of this bill by visiting this link: https://www.leg.state.nv.us/App/Opinions/79th2017/A/ (add the bill number, fill out your info, and add a comment if you would like). To make it easy, you can use the below comment with your entry or some version of it: 

Read more: Take Action to Support Our Local Brewers and Distilleries

Fresh Fish

Morgan's Lobster Shack brings quality seafood to Reno-Tahoe

Written by Erin Meyering

Morgan's Lobster Shack, a Truckee favorite, just opened a location in Midtown Reno. Owners Shawn and Heather Whitney are originally from the East Coast. Having fallen in love with the Tahoe-area, though, they decided to bring fresh fish fare along with them. 

Beyond lobster, you'll find a variety of fresh fish such as Alaskan halibut, red snapper, and others delivered almost daily and never frozen. 

House specials and local favorites include the classic lobster roll, lobster mac and cheese, oyster po' boy, the king salmon burger, and so much more. 

In addition to offering an expansive dine-in menu, purchase fresh fish and lobster to prepare yourself at the Morgan's Lobster Shack Market. You'll find an updated listing of what's availible here

home lobster

 

Read more: Morgan's Lobster Shack

chocolate monkey drink

Recipes courtesy of Hyatt Regency Lake Tahoe

Photo by Jeff Ross

CHOCOLATE MONKEY
Hot chocolate, banana liqueur and brandy, with whipped cream

GROUNDED EAGLE
Chocolate liqueur, Irish cream, Grand Marnier,
and coffee, with whipped cream

ALMOND JOY
Hot chocolate with amaretto and coconut rum, with whipped cream

SNUGGLER
Peppermint schnapps and hot chocolate,
with whipped cream and chocolate

Steve and Marcia Litsinger

STEVE AND MARCIA LITSINGER
CULTIVATE A WAY OF LIFE.

Written by Mike Colpo
Photo by Mike Okimoto

What Steve and Marcia Litsinger have accomplished in their pursuit of a simple life of thoughtful stewardship defines what many would call the highest level of organic growing. Marcia –– who Steve will tell you is the “brains behind the operation” –– uses bio-intensive (also known as “French-intensive”) growing techniques. Nothing grows around their vegetable patch that doesn’t serve a multi-layered purpose. The produce that supplies their fiercely loyal CSA customers is surrounded by fortifications of beneficials –– lavender, calendula, marigolds, and the like –– all serving to either draw in helpful insects, enrich the soil, complement companion plants, or all of the above. In keeping with their growing style, these beneficials are likely to show up in the regular CSA delivery. They come accompanied by instructions and suggestions for how to use them in everything from salads to homeopathic remedies. It’s been this way since they started doing produce deliveries 10 years ago.

The Litsingers’ approach to farming goes well beyond the food-growing end of the business. Their commitment to self-sufficiency informs everything they do, from the bank of self-installed solar panels behind their home to the natural spring that supplies them with water. Their property is entirely off the grid, and their growing houses are able to supply year-round vegetables in Nevada’s rugged climate without any electricity, making them the only CSA in the region to provide fresh, locally grown produce throughout the year.

“We never set out to become a big farm,” Steve says. “We knew how we wanted to live and we just kept trying things and working on ideas until we got it figured out.”

Indeed, the Litsingers’ friendly, encouraging energy has helped shape their deep connections to Northern Nevada’s community of organic growers. In the 10-plus years since Steve and Marcia officially began their CSA deliveries, they’ve been a part of every major effort to establish a market for locally grown organic produce –– from instructing classes through the River School in Reno to helping establish area farmers’ markets and forming the Great Basin Community Food Co-op (Greatbasinfood.coop). They are among the rare breed of folks who believe that it makes good business sense to show people how to take care of themselves. It’s why one of their regular produce deliveries might include an impromptu inspection of a customer’s fruit tree, or detailed coaching on how to grow the very vegetables that were just delivered.

For details, visit www.greatbasinfood.coop/about-us/farmers/churchill-butte-organics/.

ice carver

Ice takes shape under Truckee sculptor’s care.

Written by Ann Lindemann
Photo by Court Leve

With age-old roots in the world’s chilliest locations, ice sculpture has experienced an exciting revival in recent years. While graceful swans are a perennial buffet table favorite, it’s the non-traditional pieces that are creating the real buzz among a whole new fan base.

Read more: CARVED CREATIONS

mango

Quick Mango Sorbet

Reprinted with permission from
The Wheat-Free Cook, Gluten-Free Recipes for Everyone
by Jacqueline Mallorca

Read more: MANGOES

pork chop

BERKSHIRE PORK CHOP

from Manzanita restaurant at
The Ritz-Carlton Highlands, Lake Tahoe

4 each pork chops, bone-in
½ pound polenta
3 tablespoons mascarpone cheese
1 pint whole milk
2 medium onions
1 medium carrot
1 stalk celery
4 bunches dino kale
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 peaches, halved, skin-on
½ cup sugar
1 tablespoon water
4 cups red table wine
4 quarts veal stock
2 sprigs of thyme

For the Kale

This is the longest of your tasks to completing this dish so this is definitely where to start. Clean the kale by taking the leaves off of the stems or ribs and washing under cold water. You can discard the ribs as they are very fibrous and not choice to eat. Dice one onion fine and sweat them in a pot using pure olive oil. Once the onions are translucent, add the minced garlic and cook over low heat for two minutes, being careful not to burn the garlic. Add half a cup of red wine to the pot and let it reduce until almost dry. Add your kale along with 2 cups of water. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for an hour, stirring every 15 minutes. Season with salt to taste.

For the Polenta

Bring 3 quarts of water to a rolling boil in a pot. Using a whisk, stir in the polenta and turn down flame to medium heat. Once the polenta comes back up to a simmer, turn down the heat half way in between low and medium and let the polenta cook for 45 minutes. Add mascarpone cheese and milk to polenta and cook for an additional 15 minutes. Season with salt to taste.

For the Peaches

Put the sugar into a pan with the water. Place over medium-high heat until the sugar starts to brown. Place peaches face down into the sugar and let cook over medium heat for 10 minutes. Remove.

For the Pork Chop

Preheat oven to 350F. Season the pork chop with salt and pepper to taste and sear in a sauté pan over high heat to seal in the juices. Place pork chop into a baking pan and place into oven for 15 minutes.

For the Sauce

Bring veal stock to boil in a pot with the remaining onion, carrot, and celery (peeled and diced large) along with the 2 sprigs of thyme. Add the remaining wine and reduce to 2 quarts.

RED WINE BRAISED SHORT RIBS

short ribs

from Manzanita restaurant at
The Ritz-Carlton Highlands, Lake Tahoe

4 each beef short ribs (3-inch cut, bone-in)
1 (750ml) bottle of red table wine
2 large carrots
2 stalks celery
2 medium onions
6 sprigs of thyme
1 sprig of rosemary
1 head of garlic
8 each Yukon gold potatoes
3 tablespoons of horseradish
¾ pound of butter, unsalted
1 cup whole milk
4 quarts of veal stock

For the short ribs

The key to great short ribs is to marinate them overnight. Place your short ribs in a deep baking pan and cover with wine. Peel one carrot, onion, and celery and cut into large pieces (you can cut the onion into eighths and the carrot/celery in half) and place into the marinating short ribs. Cut the head of garlic in half at the waist so you expose all of the cloves. Don’t peel the cloves, as keeping skin on during roasting will protect the garlic from burning. Take half a head of garlic with four sprigs of thyme, the sprig of rosemary, and add to your marinating short ribs. Let the short ribs sit in the marinade for 24 hours.

Next day: preheat your oven to 350F. Remove the short ribs from the pan and reserve everything else. Heat up a skillet and sear the short ribs on all sides and place back into the marinade, making sure that the bones are facing up and the meat is facing down into the bottom of the pan. Cover with aluminum foil and place into the oven. Cook for about 3 hours or until desired tenderness is achieved.

For the potato mash

Peel and dice the Yukon potatoes and place into a pot. Cover with cold water. Cook over medium heat until the potatoes easily give in when pressed with a kitchen utensil. Drain from the water and rice the potatoes into a mixing bowl. Cut the butter into small chunks and add to the potato mixture using a whisk to incorporate. Add milk and horseradish to the potato mash and whisk well.

For the sauce

Bring veal stock to boil in a pot with the remaining carrot, onion, and celery (peeled and processed the same way as above) along with the remaining 2 sprigs of thyme. Add the braising liquid from the short ribs and reduce together to 2 quarts. Add salt to taste.

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