Santa Monica Farmers Market

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“This is our go-to guy for squashes and root vegetables,” McCarty said, pausing at Weiser Family Farms’ booth. “They’ve got watermelon radishes and 20 kinds of fingerling potatoes. He’s the most educated, informed provider here.”

McCarty noted how the weather truly dictates when and how he changes his menu (something he does every 90 days to reflect the best from the market). Local farmers rule, and Harry’s Berries from Oxnard really are flavorful even in February, we learn.

“Oxnard is one of the best areas in the world for growing winter lettuces and they’re not killing the soil to do it,” he said. “Another area is in Iraq right between the Tigris and Euphrates. Saddam Hussein destroyed it all, but when it comes back, look out.”

McCarty continued to point out further “go-to guys” for his kitchen: McGrath Family Farms with their “inventive” pea tendrils and green mustard frills, Trevino’s rhubarb (“Year round!” Mc Carty marveled. “How does he do it?”), Coleman’s Family Farm’s greens, and citrus from Polito Family Farms.

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