Saturday, January 25, 2014

Food stops: olives, oranges and dates

Some of our favorite travel stops deal with food: candies from Cranberry Sweets, cheeses from the Loleta Cheese Factory (a favorite stop, though not on this trip), etc. We enjoy sampling the treats at the store and then enjoying our purchases even more when we get home. Much to the detriment of our bank account, we have found the more free samples a store offers, the more we are inclined to buy.

These three food stops are among those we’ve made so far:

The Olive Pit
Located in Corning, California, The Olive Pit is the place to go if you like olives, say olives stuffed with garlic or blue cheese, kalamata olives or just plain jane black olives. The Olive Pit has been serving up olives for 50 years, and they’ve more than gotten the hang of it. Free samples abound, so we usually end up buying several jars of various flavors. This visit Jon sprang for a gallon can of black olives.
We’ve been stopping here since our honeymoon back in 2002, and it’s one of our favorite food stops.

 Citrus Extravaganza
As the name implies, Citrus Extravaganza, more formally known as the Murray Family Farms, specializes in citrus fruits. Located near Bakersfield, it has an old-fashioned juicer that you can use to squeeze yourself a fresh cup of orange juice. Be warned, you have to be pretty strong to even get a drop out of this squeezing machine, but the effort is worth it.

Martha’s Gardens
Date palms
Martha’s Gardens is an organic date farm located on a dirt road in rural Yuma. The farm grows Medjool dates, which originally came from Iraq. It has a pleasant outdoor patio where you can eat a deli sandwich while sipping a date shake. Jon doesn’t particularly like dates, yet somehow managed to consume a good portion of my date shake, which was eaten through a straw with a spoon on the end to scoop up the thick concoction. Scrumptious!

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