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10 Musts for Foodies in Monterey County

By: Samantha Crespo

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  • States:
    California

Explore this central California foodie paradise.

Whether you’re talking agriculture, viticulture or sustainable seafood, the local bounty of Monterey County makes this central California destination a foodie paradise. Savor the 10 essentials on this list to experience the destination’s delicious continuum from farm and sea to table.

1. Sierra Mar Restaurant, Big Sur

Located at Post Ranch Inn, Sierra Mar Restaurant’s four-course prix-fixe menu spotlights local delicacies. Pair your meal with a selection from the restaurant’s extensive wine list and breathtaking views of the Big Sur coastline.

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2. Passionfish, Pacific Grove

Sustainable seafood and organic produce have never tasted so scrumptious (imagine sea scallops served with an artichoke risotto cake). What’s more? Passionfish’s wine list is award-winning and affordable.

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3. Pebble Beach Food and Wine Festival

In this preeminent U.S. foodie event held annually in April, 70 star chefs and 250 wineries host meals, wine tastings and cooking demonstrations at Pebble Beach resorts.

During this annual event in April, star chefs and wineries host events at Pebble Beach resorts.

During this annual event in April, star chefs and wineries host events at Pebble Beach resorts.
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4. Carmel Food Tour, Carmel-by-the-Sea

On a Carmel Food Tour, stroll the quaint town with a connoisseur, pausing for food and wine tastings at local-favorite establishments.

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5. Ag Venture Tours, Carmel and Salinas Valleys

Tour organic gardens, vineyards and artichoke fields with local insiders for a behind-the-scenes look at the bounty of Monterey County — and on-the-spot tastings.

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6. Farmers' markets, throughout Monterey County

You can find a farmers’ market almost any day of the week here, but the largest is the Tuesday market in downtown Monterey. The market lines Monterey’s main avenue, creating a street party atmosphere with fresh produce and food booths offering snacks and meals to enjoy onsite or take away.

You can find a farmers’ market almost any day of the week in Monterey County, but the largest is the Tuesday market in downtown Monterey.

You can find a farmers’ market almost any day of the week in Monterey County, but the largest is the Tuesday market in downtown Monterey.
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7. GourmetFest, Carmel-by-the-Sea

Four days of cooking demonstrations, wine tastings and themed meals (caviar lunch!) from chefs and wine estates affiliated with the luxury brand Relais & Châteaux. Held annually in March.

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8. Lucia Restaurant, Carmel Valley

Lucia Restaurant’s “California-French” style emphasizes ingredients so fresh, it’s likely that the herbs and vegetables on your plate were just plucked from the chef’s onsite garden.

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9. The Farm, Salinas

Connect the local farm and dining scenes by engaging your senses at The Farm. In this lush countryside setting, take a farm tour and shop the produce stand, stocked with fruits and vegetables picked same-day.

The Farm offers agricultural tours and keeps its produce stand stocked with fresh fruits and vegetables. 

The Farm offers agricultural tours and keeps its produce stand stocked with fresh fruits and vegetables.
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10. Pacific's Edge, Carmel Highlands

This restaurant at the Hyatt Carmel Highlands is acclaimed for its seasonal offerings and its views. In fact, the restaurant’s glass walls are designed to show off the Pacific Ocean and rugged coastline.

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