The Taste of Place
This idea of locally grown food is real and it’s a movement; there’s no one single spokesperson or geographic center. It’s happening everywhere, and it’s happening now, even in towns you never knew were on the map. This notion that food has specific qualities defined by a sense of place is called TERROIR. It’s a French word, one often used to describe not how wine tastes but from where it tastes, and not from a winemaking region but from a single vineyard, even a single lot planted on a single hill. It’s that precise. Scientists might say terroir is determined by unique mineral combinations in the soil or an area’s microclimate, which is akin to a climatic signature. A farmer’s growing practices may also play a role, which I discovered when visiting Judith Redmond at Full Belly Farm in California’s Capay Valley.