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2013 SLO Co. Upick berries--your favorites please

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Where do YOU like to go for Upick berries--all types-- on the SLO/Central Coast?

My favorites:

Rutiz Farmstand on The Pike in Arroyo Grande (or is it Oceano??) near the community of Halcyon. They are doing strawberries now, with Raspberries in July. Good flavor and sustainably farmed.

Stand on the corner of Division and Orchard in Nipomo. Small plot of berries and some Haas avocados, seasonally. Very richly flavored and sweet, "no sprays". NOT upick but my favorite local berries.

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  1. I like picking up mine at Okui's in Grover Beach. Can't top the freshness of flavor.

    3 Replies
    1. re: mike0989

      Okui's sells their berries to outlets in the Bay Area as well. I was quite surprised to find them at an Oriental Mkt on Irving in SF as well as on El Camino near Menlo Park, in a Mexican Mkt. Good berries, but not sure if unsprayed.

      1. re: toodie jane

        Early in the year we'll see Santa Maria area strawberries until the local berries come on line. Now local strawberries are available as early as February, but they're not that great then and the ones from further south are still better.

        1. re: Melanie Wong

          Saw the Okui's in PA in June of '09 and this year in SF in late April. Always shocks the heck out of me--they're a small farm, maybe 30 acres. (unless they have acreage elsewhere. Their stand is at 13th & Highland, in Grover Beach, not far from Highway 1 near downtown Oceano.

    2. April 30, 2012 --- Driving north from LA, I stopped in Camarillo to buy organic strawberries from McGrath's roadside stand.
      http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/723122

      Not u-pick, but further north, I did take the time to scope out a couple strawberry stands off 101. I think it was a little too early in the season as they didn't seem to have peak ripeness nor scent at that point.

      Photos of the two stands in Nipomo are below. I don't recall the exact coordinates for them now, but I'm sure you recognize them. The stand run by Mr Gonzalez is closer to the freeway, if I remember correctly. I bought a $2 basket of Albion strawberries and the lady gave me a free cauliflower.

      The second stand was getting ready to close up when I got there around 6pm. I asked if I could sample a berry . . . no deal. I asked if I could buy just one basket and not three . . . no deal. So I left empty-handed.

       
       
       
      6 Replies
      1. re: Melanie Wong

        The photo on the right, flying the "open" banner, is the Nipomo Berry Stand that toodie jane mentions on the corner of Division and Orchard streets. I looked at google street view for that intersection to identify it.

        1. re: Melanie Wong

          Figuring that I got off the freeway at Tefft, I'm pretty sure that the stand shown in the photos on the left and center is the stand at Blume St and West Tefft.

          1. re: Melanie Wong

            I always buy just one box, never had a problem...I wonder what gives? Theirs are Albions this year as well. Try those at Rutiz next trip if you can, smaller berries but great flavor. Variety...?

            1. re: toodie jane

              It was indeed odd. At closing time, the table still had many baskets of berries, and I figured they'd be anxious to get rid of them. I already had four baskets from two other sources and didn't feel like paying for much more.

              1. re: Melanie Wong

                I'm going to investigate, They had a new fellow at the stand last time I was there--perhaps he has a $ incentive to clear the display by closing. will fish around, but that is not good customer service!

                1. re: toodie jane

                  Again, I was there in April *2012*, and a woman was on duty at the stand.