Downtown Farmers Market

Posted on August 31, 2011 by  
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Each year, Carol & I look forward the time when the Downtown Farmers Market opens for business.  It traditionally runs from late spring to early fall.

Before the market goes begins it’s long winter nap, we thought that it would be great to highlight the market again.  With only 5 weeks remaining, we encourage you to swing by and enjoy the ambiance and good food.

Recently, the Voice wrote about what the downtown market had to offer.  Below, is an slightly edited version of their article.  Enjoy …

Nothing is more relaxing to me than heading out to the farmers’ market. It delights the senses with vibrant colors, a bounty of new and familiar temptations for the palate, music floating on the breeze, the air tinged with the sweet smell of peaches, the ripe scent of tomatoes, and sharper scent of fresh herbs and potted plants. It’s at the market that I experienced nectaplums, jujubes, French apricots, and squash blossoms, amongst other rare hybrids and seasonal treasures.

If you haven’t attended Los Altos’ Farmers Market, on Thursday evenings, you are missing out. It’s run by the California Farmers’ Market Association, and features a mix of fresh produce and food booths so you can enjoy dinner at the market, said Ryan Slover from the Market Association. You can find this wonderful community event between Second & Fourth Streets in Downtown Los Altos every Thursday until September 29th, from 4:00 to 8:00 pm.

“It’s a great opportunity to pick up some local produce mid-week, enjoy dinner, and stroll with the family.” Slover says.

Peter Dietzel, another Market Association official, adds that they plan to have several tastings throughout the summer. “Everyone who has gala apples, for example, will enter and we’ll have a panel and judge who has the best.”

If you aren’t an aficionado of farmers’ markets, you can’t get fresher produce than the Los Altos market unless you grow it yourself. Coming from just four miles away, Hidden Villa brings meat, eggs, and a variety of vegetables to the market. They are an educational farm that has day camps for kids, and all of their animals are humanely-raised and slaughtered.

Most of the farmers come a greater distance to be at the market. Geri Prevedelli-Lathrop and her stepson drive from Watsonville each week. Their family-owned Prevedelli Farms goes back four generations. “While most people think strawberries when they think Watsonville, we have 32 different types of apples alone, plus boysenberries, ollalieberries and pears,” she said.

It’s all not eggs and berries at the market. There are baked goods, bread vendors, falafel stands, chicken, baked potatoes, corn on the cob, shaved ice and Afghan boulani. Local restaurants with stands include the Oaxacan Kitchen and Spot: A Pizza Place.

I am particularly smitten with a booth: The g:m:me bakery. It stands for “granny to mom to me,” representing the handing down of traditional Irish recipes like soda bread and scones. It’s run by Matt and Yvonne Klinksick, who lived in Limerick, Ireland until three years ago. They make lovely (and highly addictive) scones. After sampling the chocolate chip scone (which Matt declared is a popular seller), I tasted the seasonal strawberry and the apricot (which Matt also declared a popular seller). “My wife is really the baking genius. I hand out the samples!” Matt joked. But I walked away with multiple scones, so Matt isn’t too shabby on the sales side, either.

There are also plants and flowers at the market. Will Wiersig of Wiersig Garden Plants, who has been at the market since 2005, started his Los Altos-based nursery with his brother, bringing tea roses, herbs, peppers, eggplants and advice to the public. “This is really my only opportunity to interact with the customers, and we keep seeing friends, and people we know, and we just got hooked in and we keep coming back. I also learned a lot about food here, talking to the other farmers,” he said. “It’s amazing how little I knew until I started coming to the market. My friends think everything at the supermarket is organic. They have no idea!”

I was raised going to farmers’ markets in my hometown of Chico, a farming community, so I know how willing the farmers are to share knowledge along with their samples. Farmers’ markets are treasures, an extension of the community. A mid-week market that allows you to unwind after work, restock the crisper and not have to get up early is truly a joy. The market is an easy way to eat locally grown food, and be informed about what you eat. Get to know the vendors, bring your own bags or basket, and bring enough cash, preferably in small bills.


A Bit Of History – Redwood Grove

Posted on August 18, 2011 by  
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While the City of Los Altos was incorporated in 1952, it’s history goes back much father.  Out of all the park in Los Altos, one of the most tranquil is Redwood Grove.  There is a back story for each gem treasured by the community.

Recently, an article was written by L.A. Chung, editor for Los Altos Patch, about this truly special place. Below, is an slightly edited version.  Enjoy …

In the beginning, Redwood Grove was not a redwood grove at all.

It was, as Berkeley resident Katherine Buss tells it, a spot “with a creek and one redwood tree,” a small house shaded by live oak trees, on about six acres.

How it became a redwood grove is a story Buss likes to share. It’s one of many stories about the special place her grandmother, Emma Wright Halsey, cultivated.

Buss is making a point to go, because the meeting is one where Redwood Grove’s future as a park is being shaped, one with a historic house that is deteriorating.

“I ran across an article online saying they were considering whether to restore or demolish it, and I thought, ‘Maybe they don’t know about the history of the occupants,'” Buss said.

Emma Wright Halsey purposefully planted the coastal redwood grove, Buss said, sapling by sapling, brought in by the truckload from her grandparent’s original property in the Santa Cruz Mountains. Redwood Grove is the place where her mother, Eugenia Halsey Buss, and uncle, Theodore Vail Halsey Jr., grew up with so many happy memories. And it is the place where her mother took family members from time to time, after the city of Los Altos made it a public park.

After the city purchased the property and it was used for summer day camps, her mother periodically took Buss and other relatives to revisit the rooms where they lived and where Emma Halsey had tended her rhododendrons and water lilies. Her mother told story after story of the old days.


A Home In The Hills

Posted on August 15, 2011 by  
Filed under Sold Properties · Tagged: , , , ,

12460 HILLTOP DR, Los Altos Hills, CA 94024
Listed  at $1,499,000 / Sold at $1,450,000
4 Beds / 2 Baths / Home: 1,966 sqft / Lot Size: 18,693 sqft
Single Family Detached
Represented: Buyer


Another Listing Sold In North Los Altos

Posted on August 6, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Sold Properties · Tagged: , , , ,

Check out our new listing we just sold at 560 Los Altos Avenue.  For the past seven years, it has been home to a wonderful family that fully enjoyed living in Los Altos. Being located in North Los Altos allowed them the ability to stroll to Town, enjoy the Hetch-Hetchy pathway, and dine at many of the nearby restaurants. All of these community amenities are just minutes away.

This 4 bedroom 2.5 full bath home had been updated and was move in ready.  The added benefit of a back yard pool and patio made this home perfect for entertaining.

560 Los Altos is within the Santa Rita Elementary School boundary, which teaches children from Kindergarten through 6th grade. Santa Rita is one of the two schools, mentioned above, that had been selected as national Blue Ribbon school.

To ensure your real estate needs are successfully met, make sure you have the Casas Team on your side of the negotiation table. Contact us today for a private consultation (650-823-1434).