The opening ceremonies of the 2012 Great Harvest Convention led 15 of us on an informal field trip up to Temecula to visit the Great Harvest here and the home of owners Brad and Alicia.
The gorgeous backdrop that unfolded!
Karen, Matt and I went wine tasting in Temecula 6 years ago when Karen lived in San Diego for a year. This visit was more of a bread tasting – I will have to come back fore more wine.
The Temecula store is gorgeous and full of dark wood and natural materials. I love visiting other bakeries and getting ideas for our own lobby and flow.
And of course trying new products is always fun too! We actually tasted the Lemon Blueberry Bread Pudding bar (incredible!) and I bought a few Trek bars for trip snacks to try out.
Our mini bus next took us to Brad and Alicia’s home, which is stunningly beautiful and tucked in the hillside
They had fires going –
A stage complete with live band –
And a stocked bar – including some Stone IPA on tap! Love that beer. Wanted to drink the whole keg, but of course I didn’t.
Because somebody else was drinking for two!
A spread up appetizers kept us fed. Our late lunch confused my stomach. It felt hungry but not really growling hungry, ya know?
But I nibbled on the apps because I’m a flavor taster
Peppers stuffed with goat cheese!
And more cheese and crackers (my current favorite foods!)
It felt like 6pm but it was only about 4:30!
But soon the sun set
The fires became our only source of warmth
And dinner was served!
Alicia made the BBQ herself – she smoked it for two days and made the sauce from scratch. As a North Carolinian, I was eager to taste California BBQ, but it turned out to be NC-style, and she hit it right on the nose. The flavors were incredible!! No need to smother on a vinegary sauce.
Served on none other than a Great Harvest roll!
We also had fruit skewers and slaw
And for dessert – more bread pudding bars!!
I tried a lemon and the cinnamon chip – it was a toss up which was best!
Only a handful of Great Harvest owners attended the event – the rest of the people were friends of the hosts. By the time musical act #2 came on, the place was packed.
The star of the show was Lee Koch, who I hear will be on the show “The Voice” this coming Monday. He and his wife used to work for Brad and Alicia, and he’s on his way up the music ladder. His performance was amazing!
I am thrilled with the fact that I packed my laptop in my purse so I could take my time writing this post on our hour-long bus ride home. When we get back to the hotel, it will be nearly midnight on the East Coast and I’ll have been up for over 20 hours. Cannot wait to sleeeeeeeep!!!