On location: San Luis Obispo County
July/Aug. 2013 California Bountiful magazine
What makes it distinctive? Find out!
It's easy to see why William Randolph Hearst picked San Luis Obispo County to build his iconic castle. Located halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles, the geographically diverse region is defined by scenic valleys, mountains, beaches, monarch butterflies, expansive farmland, cattle ranches and 250 wineries.
||Ryan Talley, Arroyo Grande
After earning a degree in finance, Ryan Talley was offered a job with American Express. Instead, he returned to Talley Farms, where he grew up, to run 1,600 acres founded by his grandfather in 1948. The farm grows bell peppers, cilantro, spinach, leaf lettuce, avocados, lemons, grapes and napa cabbage.
Margarita Adventures, Santa Margarita
See the historic Santa Margarita Ranch from a whole new perspective: high above it on a four-zipline canopy tour. You'll learn about the area's rich agricultural history, winegrowing and the state's oldest continuously operated cattle ranch.
||Downtown Farmers' Market, San Luis Obispo
Every Thursday from 6 to 9 p.m., tourists and locals flock to the internationally renowned market on Higuera Street to revel in five city blocks of fresh produce from local growers, a barbecue, live music, baked goods, restaurant fare and more. It's a can't-miss, lively festival every week.
||California Mid-State Fair, Paso Robles
"Start Spreading the News" is the theme for this year's much-anticipated event, July 17-28, celebrating the world of communications, as well as the region's bountiful agriculture. Highlights include olive oil, wine and home-brew competitions, and chart-topping musicians such as Tim McGraw and John Mayer.
Novo Restaurant Lounge, San Luis Obispo
The chefs at this highly regarded, creek-side restaurant create many of their globally inspired dishes using food from Central Coast farmers, who grow fresh vegetables and fruits year-round. Novo is also well-known for its relaxing, romantic ambience and patio seating.