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ISO Picnic Foods - Marin/Sonoma Co.

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I'm driving from Monterey to northern Sonoma Co. on Friday for a day of wine tasting. I'd like to stop along the way to pick up a picnic lunch - bread, cheese, olives, etc. I'm looking for somewhere off 101 between San Rafael and Santa Rosa. I know there are a few Whole Foods along the way, but I'd prefer any recommendations for an interesting independent market. Thanks.

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  1. I recommend a stop at the Ferry Bldg on the Embarcadero - all independent purveyors with anything you could possibly want for a high-end picnic.

    1. Since you're headed to northern Sonoma County, I say forget the Ferry Building, crowds and parking hassle and go straight up to the wine country for your provisions.

      If you have time, take a break in your drive in Petaluma to visit Della Fattoria's cafe. You might enjoy a stop in Santa Rosa at Traverso's market, just a couple blocks off 101. It's an old time Italian deli. I recently purchased some Fra Mani soppressata there for less than Cowgirl Creamery in the FB charges and Traverso's is better at slicing it as thin as I wanted.

      You can find everything you need in Healdsburg and have a look around the Plaza area while you're at it. I'd suggest starting at the Cheese Shop, where you can buy cheese, bread, whole Fra mani (no slicer here), olives, chocolates, ice cream, and more. If you want fresh fruits and veggies, walk across the street to Anstead's market for a fine selection of mostly local and/or organic, plus groceries. You can fill in from Oakville Grocery, two blocks away, or step into the Plaza Farms complex for Bovolo (superb salumi, better than Boccalone's) and Supper for food to-go, and check out the olive oil at Davero, and other fine purveyors. Don't miss Downtown Bakery, also on the Plaza. Big John's is on Dry Creek Road and Healdsburg Ave., and you can choose from many artisan local breads (including a good selection Della Fattoria -- pumpkin seed is my fave this time of year), a good precut cheese selection, and an olive bar (priced lower than the Cheese Shop) at this full-service, independent grocer.

      More info and links to other discussion threads by clicking on the Place link names below.

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      Della Fattoria
      141 Petaluma Blvd N, Petaluma, CA 94952

      Downtown Bakery & Creamery
      308 Center St, Healdsburg, CA 95448

      Traverso's Gourmet Foods
      2097 Stagecoach Rd,, Santa Rosa, CA

      Bovolo
      106 Matheson St, Healdsburg, CA 95448

      Supper
      106 Matheson St, Healdsburg, CA 95448

      Anstead's - now Shelton's
      428 Center St, Healdsburg, CA 95448

      Big John's Market
      1345 Healdsburg Ave, Healdsburg, CA 95448

      Cheese Shop of Healdsburg
      423 Center St, Healdsburg, CA

      Oakville Grocery
      124 Matheson St, Healdsburg, CA 95448

      1. The original comment has been removed
        1. Ugh on Ledson's (and besides, they are hardly right off the 101).

          I'd recommend Traverso's which is a block or two off the freeway in Santa Rosa (sorry, I can't remember which exit).

        2. I second MW's suggestion to skip the Ferry Bldg. this time and head directly north. I also second her suggestion for Traverso's market located at 3rd and B st. downtown Santa Rosa. They have a ton of specialty/gourmet goodies, a full deli, etc and they are conveniently located off the 101.

          1. Della Fattoria is definitely my pick for a quick stop in Petaluma. The have awesome bread and pastries. I haven't been to their cafe in a while, so I'm not sure what else is on the menu, but by far the best bakery I've been to in Sonoma County. Have a great time!