by TImothy Rutt
Who knew Oct. 24 was National Food Day? (Not to be confused with World Food Day, which was Oct. 16. We keep the decorations up all year, like a trailer park Christmas, ) But what better place to celebrate than in Altadena, the Food Capital of the San Gabriel Valley?
Here's a few food-related things worth checking out:
- AAAltaEats:Westways, the Auto Club magazine, has just published a Jean T. Barrett review of Altadena's most famous unsigned restaurant, AltaEats. She seems to get it right ("modernist box" interior, check; "savvy and helpful" staff, check; Chef Paul Ragan's unfussy cooking, check. Altadena as an "up-and-coming foodie community," double-check). All we can say is, uh, check it out.
- Back at the ranch: The Pasadena Public Health Department is hosting a community-wide celebration at its headquarters today, 1845 N. Fair Oaks Avenue, Pasadena, from 10 AM-2 PM today. Featured is produce grown by John Muir High School's Muir Ranch, as well as other regional farms. Purchase fresh, low-price, and locally-grown California produce. The event includes healthy food demonstrations, free nutrition resources, prizes, games, and healthy holiday beverages. All proceeds go to Muir Ranch, a three-acre working farm on the school grounds that teaches students practical farming and entrepreneurial skills.
- Taste of Spain: OK, it's on Nov. 1, but you can clear your calendar for it: The Friends of the Altadena Library present RIchard Foss at the Altadena Main Library, 600 E. Mariposa St. , at 7 PM. Foss is the head of the Culinary Historians of Southern California, restaurant critic, food writer, and teacher of culinary history at Osher Institute of UCLA. He's also a journalist, a food event organizer, and author of a recently published book on rum. (He's also a science fiction writer, Elizabethan history instructor, theater director, and graphic designer.) At the library, he will talk about the history of Spanish food (and some light Spanish fare will be served), and will be signing his book Rum: A Global History. Along the way, there'll be Olivia Chiang's Spanish guitar and Jessica Pacheco's flamenco dancing. Food Day is every day, really. Olé!