As we approach the New Year here in Fort Bragg, we are feeling especially blessed. We’ve had glorious, sunny weather over the holidays, just perfect for guiding family and friends along the coastal trails and beautiful spots that abound around every corner here. My friend from New Orleans has been utterly awestruck by the simple walks we’ve taken – meandering through the Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens, down to Belinda Point, and over to the Point Cabrillo Lighthouse, where I always find a sense of peace and silence – there’s something about that land. Not to mention the beautiful new coastal trail, and the hike over to MacKerricher Park.
Holiday decorations are still up, but soon we’ll find everything swept clean, and it will be time to focus on the New Year ahead of us. The best resolution may simply be to find ourselves fully present in the beauty and glory of the Mendocino coast, and to appreciate the tight knit community we’ve created right here in Fort Bragg. KOZT’s feature “I love this town” always warms my heart and reminds me how lucky I am to live here. At this time of year, I also love making donations to local agencies to help keep this community vital and compassionate. Some of my favorites are the Fort Bragg Food Bank, Mendocino Coast Children’s Fund, Art Explorers, as well as Project Sanctuary. There are more options, too. I do like keeping donations local. It’s a way of showing appreciation for the many dedicated volunteers we have here in the community. It’s really a place where people enjoy helping others. Yet another reason to feel grateful for living in beautiful Fort Bragg, California.
January is also the season for the 18th Annual Crab, Wine and Beer Festival, named one of the top 10 seafood and wine events by Coastal Living magazine. Celebrations abound throughout the county, and we’re certainly no slackers here in Fort Bragg. Our highlights this year include a delicious Cioppino Dinner with three seatings on Friday, January 27. The event benefits the Mendocino Coast Clinics, and includes a silent auction and raffle as well as abundant seafood.
Excitement builds on Saturday, January 28 with the Crab Cake Cook-Off and Wine Tasting Competition from noon to 3:00 p.m. in the big white tent right on the corner of Main and Spruce in Fort Bragg, where you can savor the signature dish and vote for your favorite! Tickets and details for both events are available here.
On Saturday, January 28 the Fort Bragg Firehouse is the setting for a delicious crab feed with plentiful crab, clam chowder, salad, and garlic bread. My son attended on a visit to Fort Bragg one year, and was very impressed with how beautifully the event was managed, not to mention how delicious the food was. The amazing feast goes on from noon to six p.m. Advance tickets and reservations are available at Pyorre Insurance: 707-964-6331 Harvest Market 707-964-7000 or Sport Dodge 707-964- 5915.
Cucina Verona on Laurel Street in Fort Bragg will offer a “Blue Collar Winemaker Dinner”with Navarro Vineyards from five to nine. This event is sure to sate your desire for crab…four courses each featuring local crab and paired with Navarro wines. 707-964-6844
If you’re looking for a crab louie, crab bruschetta, or a unique version of crabcakes and cioppino, stop by Django’s, a newish place in the harbor, where you’ll find plenty of local beer and wine plus whole crab when available. Open Thurs – Sunday from noon to 8:00 p.m. 707.962.0100
North Coast Brewing Company
Celebrate with crab dishes and award-winning, hand-crafted ales from the North Coast Brewing Co. You can listen to live jazz in the Sequoia Room every Friday and Saturday night, too. 707.964.3400 www.northcoastbrewing.com
Point Noyo Restaurant & Bar
Point Noyo Restaurant and Bar on Main Street will be open for dinner each evening at 4:00 p.m. Pair local wines and beers with your crab dishes and see the lovely views from your window! 707-962-3035
Silver’s at the Wharf
Come early and grab a window table to watch what happens in a genuine working harbor. 800.643.2700
Want more details about county-wide happenings? Click here.