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Tis the season to get tipsy in the plaza, y’all. SLO Wine’s 25th Anniversary Roll out the Barrels Celebration continues with Barrels in the Plaza unrolling this April 30. The grand tasting will kick off in SLO Mission Plaza with a slew of local wines and edible goodies galore! Also, be sure to check out all the cool wine events happening at local hot spots through May 3, including a Taste of the Coast Winemaker Dinner at Café Roma held May 1 (Get your tickets and see all events at … If you haven’t visited San Miguel’s Pleasant Valley Wine Trail, you need to get your rear in gear, missy. Dusty roads, friendly peeps, and a rainbow of rad wines await you—plus you can use a handy dandy trip planner at their website that easily shows which wineries feature a picnic area, food for sale, horse trails, and more! (Finally—an “at-a-glance” wine guide that isn’t confusing. See for all the info). Happy trails, tasters!

Get in my belly

Tart, yet terrific: Have you ever eaten a lemon, rind, pith and all? That’s exactly what I did—and loved every bite of it—thanks to Nigella Lawson’s citrusy-delicious slow roasted garlic and lemon chicken recipe, which features whole chunks of lemon that become candied as they fill your house with a downright mouthwatering aroma (head over at; and did I mention it’s a one-pot meal?) … Depalo & Sons in Shell Beach is not just a great place to pick up provisions for your next party. The real-life deli serves up everything from Nutella and banana breakfast paninis to anchovy-topped Brooklyn Caesar salads and sandwiches stuffed with Alaskan snow crab (While there, you must pick up a freshly-made blob of mozzarella cheese, too; 2665-L Shell Beach Road). Shave it over some pizza dough or chop it into an heirloom tomato salad. You won’t regret it.

Food for thought

What is that weird, neon orange dust, anyway? The Dorito Effect: The Surprising New Truth about Food and Flavor (by journalist Mark Schatzker) doesn’t just gang up on those crunchy, cool ranch chips you love to love. The funny, hard-hitting book tugs at the very center of America’s obsession with fake-flavored junk in lieu of real food pleasures. You can find the first serial excerpt on The Wall Street Journal’s website (warning: You will not look at the snack bar the same way ever again) … Nerds + wine equals one heck of a good time. EarthCam teamed up with the Washington State Wine Commission to create a Live Vineyard Cam for your drinking pleasure. Why? Because technology, that’s why. (Check it out at I like to keep the cam rolling throughout the day to give myself the illusion of working outside. I can dream, can’t I?

Does Hayley Thomas have something at her teeth? Be a good friend and tell her at [email protected].

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