Marin Food Scene from A to Z


ALAN SCOTT OVEN In the ’70s an Aussie named Alan Scott opened a Tomales Bay smithy where he designed and handcrafted his eponymous and famous ovens. He nurtured the bread-inclined, from Chad Robertson of Tartine to Celine Underwood of…

BRICKMAIDEN BAKERY, famous around the bay for her baked goods.

CHEESE Yep, so abundant is this creamy treat here in Marin we have an official milkshed to go along with our watershed.

DOUGHNUTS Have you heard of Johnny? Johnny Doughnuts’ first shop was a food truck before it opened a place in San Rafael’s West End.

EGGS Did you know the Farallon Islands once supported a thriving egg business? That’s gone, but today Woolly Egg Ranch in Tam Valley provides free-range chicken and duck eggs.

FARMERS MARKETS From Tennessee Valley to Novato, you’ll find an agricultural bounty under the tents.

GLUTEN-FREE We got options, from Fairfax’s corn-focused Mas Masa to Flour Craft Bakery and beyond.

HONEY Buy locally made honey to support the small families, farmers and beekeepers who are providing the needed homes and forage for honeybees that are directly responsible for pollinating up to 90 percent of our flora.

IMMUNOCEUTICALS Foods that support the immune system are found in over 50 varieties of mush- rooms and can even help fight cancer.

JOE’S It’s no secret we have our share of Joe’s — Marin Joe’s, San Rafael Joe’s, Joe’s Taco Lounge — but these are unrelated to the grocery Trader Joe’s, which opened its first Marin location in San Rafael in 1988.

KOMBUCHA Have you heard about the new cafe inside Copperfield’s Books in San Rafael? It’s one of the places serving Marin Kombucha on tap.

LAGUNITAS BREWING COMPANY, started by Tony Magee in 1993, crafts brews now available in around 20 countries world- wide.

MOLLIE STONE’S has made some recent earth-friendly upgrades and is just one of our homegrown food stores, including Good Earth, Mill Valley Market and Woodlands.

NAAN From crowd-pleaser Batika in Novato to the naan wraps at Avatar’s Punjabi Burritos, we love our Indian bread.

ORGANIC In 1999 Marin, Organic set out to create the nation’s first all-organic county. Twenty years later it can claim a 95 percent certification rate and conversion of more than 20,000 acres.

PIZZA There’s San Rafael’s Mulberry Street Pizzeria, winner of Food Network’s Challenge: Pizza Battle; sourdough pies at Bar Bocce that are best consumed on the adjacent beach; tons of thin-crust goodies at Pizza Antica — you name it, it’s here.

QUINCE Also, mole, banana leaf, unripe grape juice: these and other unique ingredients can be found in Marin’s international markets; see page 46 for details.

RESTAURANTS Marin has Mexican, Japanese, Italian, burger, pizza and myriad other choices, but the county’s oldest eateries are Smiley’s Saloon (1851) and William Tell House (1877).

SEAFOOD With about 72 miles of shore, our county has abalone, oysters, herring, salmon, halibut and so on. And several Sausalito-based companies, like Safe Catch and Patagonia Provisions, bring ethics and sustainability to the game.

TEA Mighty Leaf, Republic of Tea, Breakaway Matcha, Navitas Organics matcha lattes — national brands are purveying health benefits and harmony from right here in Marin.

URBAN REMEDY Supermodels Cindy Crawford and Kate Upton are on the bandwagon of this national brand, Marin County born, that makes “food is healing” real.

VEGAN You’ll find vegan dishes galore at Indian restaurants countywide; and here in the office we can’t get enough of Davey Jones Deli’s Vulcan Wrap.

WINE More than 30 different labels now say “Marin,” including DeLoach, McEvoy, Pey-Marin, Skywalker Vineyards, Thackrey & Company and Trek Wine.

XIAO LONG BAO Find these famous Chinese soup dumplings and other delectable dim sum at Harmony in Strawberry, Yet Wah in San Rafael and of course, Cathy Tsui’s Tru Gourmet food truck on Sunday at the Civic Center farmers market.

YUCATÁN Yes, yay to San Rafael’s Pibil Authentic Yucatán Food.

ZEN CENTER The Green Gulch Farm Zen Center has a working vegetable farm, tea gatherings and a kitchen apprenticeship program focused on vegetarian cooking.