Food and Wine, Wine and Food: A Wine Predator’s Philosophy Part 1


What we eat and drink matters to our health, and to the health of the planet on which we live and that we share. How the food and wine that we enjoy is produced has an impact greater than we can easily imagine.

“If you want to feed your family healthy food, you’ve gotta ask a lotta questions,” says Patagonia’s founder, Yvon Chouinard.

Fortunately, people are helping us to understand the importance of our choices, and we can hear their message in films like Unbroken Ground.

My concerns for the planet informed me as a child who wrote about ladybugs and litterbugs, the child who started backpacking and rock climbing at 12, the teen who taught mountaineering in Colorado, the woman who was one of the first 20 women to hike the Pacific Crest Trail from Mexico to Canada, the student who earned degrees in Environmental Studies and in Literature/Creative Writing with an emphasis in nature writing and in Ecopsychology, and the professor who today teaches college composition at a community college where students research and seek to solve environmental problems.

My environmental advocacy doesn’t show up as much in the posts of this blog as it does on Art Predator where I frequently write about a number of environmental issues with a focus the past two years on single use plastic.

But my concern is there: in the stories we choose to tell, in the wines we focus on, in the organic baguettes and crackers we feature in photos, in the locally made and crafted cheeses on the plate, even in the organic pastas whether they are exquisite artisanally made in Italy like Pasta Felicetti or from Trader Joe’s.

We do this because these foods are better tasting, and, most importantly, better for the planet.  And wine is a food.

I’m going to be returning to this food theme this month in several posts, including one about that amazing organic pasta from Italy made from heirloom grains, plus a more complicated series of posts about my recent visit to Justin Winery in the Paso Robles region. From my research, it seems that Justin, as run by founder Justin Baldwin, was a model for many sustainability practices, but the new parent company, Wonderful,  mowed down some 5-10,000 oak trees and created a football sized water storage facility. This move will upset the water table for the dry farmers of grapes and disrupt the denizens of those oak woodlands and oak-filled canyons.

In the meantime, check out Unbroken Ground, the new film by Chris Malloy, which documents how what we eat connects to climate change, and shows us how food plays a critical role in our efforts to solve the environmental crisis. The film is on the road with stops at Patagonia stores across the country (schedule below).

In Unbroken Ground, Patagonia Founder Yvon Chouinard, Wes Jackson of The Land Institute, filmmaker Chris Malloy and Birgit Cameron, Director of Patagonia Provisions, examine our current relationship with food in four areas. Watch the trailer below.

The 25 minute film is being shown at events at Patagonia Stores around the country this summer with the aim of changing our relationship with the land and oceans. Following the short film, hear from a panel of speakers and taste Patagonia Provisions’ organic food sourced from our partners featured in the film.



CHRIS MALLOY FILMMAKER; BIRGIT CAMERON DIRECTOR, PATAGONIA PROVISIONS attend many of the film screenings along with a panel of other experts

On Th. 7/7 the film will be screened in Ventura at in the yard of Great Pacific Iron Works which next door to Patagonia headquarters and where Patagonia began. The event will include Patagonia’s contributions to the food revolution like Patagonia’s  new Long Root Ale beer and Patagonia Provisions’ organic food sourced from partners featured in the film. Doors open at 7pm with music from Todd Hannigan + Sleeping Chief and The Brave Kind. The film screens at 8pm.

Filmmaker Malloy, Patagonia Provisions Director Birgit Cameron, Wes Jackson of the Land Institute, and Chouinard will hold a panel discussion on the issues the film raises at the Ventura event.

Scheduled free screenings in July include:

Jul. 05
Doors 7:00 PM; Film 7:30 PM
Patagonia Santa Monica
1344 4th Street, Santa Monica, CA 90401

Jul. 06
Doors 7:00 pm, Film 8:00 pm
La Paloma Theatre
471 S Coast Hwy, Encinitas, CA 92094

Jul. 07
Doors 7:00 pm, Film 8:00 pm
Patagonia Ventura
Great Pacific Iron Works, 235 W. Santa Clara Street, Ventura, CA 93001

Jul. 19
Doors 6:30 pm, Film 7:00 pm
Patagonia San Francisco
770 North Point, San Francisco, CA 94109

Jul. 20
6:00 PM
Proof Lab, Mill Valley
254 Shoreline Hwy, Mill Valley, CA 94941

Jul. 21
Doors 7:00 pm, Film 7:30 pm
Patagonia Santa Cruz
The Patagonia Outlet, 415 River Street #C, Santa Cruz, CA 95060

Jul. 30
Doors 6:30pm, Film 7:00pm
Patagonia Hale’iwa
66-250 Kamehameha Hwy., Hale’iwa, HI 96712

Jul. 31
Doors 6:00pm, Film 6:30pm
Patagonia Honolulu
940 Auahi Street, Space 1100, Honolulu, HI 96814

Now while I have tasted some of the Patagonia Provisions while backpacking, it seems the time is ripe to do a Patagonia Provisions tasting –paired with wine of course! Subscribe and stay tuned!



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