This week we did two of our favorite rides: one to Blackhawk and the other to the farmers market at Forest Home Farms in San Ramon. Both days the weather was gorgeous and conditions on the road were good. On the way to Blackhawk, we stopped to rest for a few minutes by the Tassajara Nursery which a group of kids was visiting on a school field trip. On this spring day everything was in bloom, and the nursery was a burst of color, enlivened by the enthusiastic youngsters.
(Double click on any of these pictures to see a larger, clearer version.)
After our requisite visit to the bookstore Read, we stopped for lunch at Stomp, where we ate outside and admired the Blackhawk scene. Stomp is a wine bar with an offering of small plates which are imaginative and scrumptious. Three of us shared their version of a cobb salad (steak, lettuce, tomatoes, hard-boiled, eggs, the whole works); gnocchi with spring peas; and a smoked turkey sandwich with a side salad of arugula. All portions were generous, and the service was excellent. Two of us split a lemon tart for dessert. Service was excellent, and the prices are reasonable. I hope that this restaurant does well.
To reach the farmers market at Forest Home Farms in San Ramon, again we parked at the Park and Ride on Sycamore. This time we headed south on Iron Horse until we reached the Cross Valley Trail, just before Pine Valley Road in San Ramon. We turned right on to the Cross Valley Trail and followed it til its end. From there one can see the bustling farmers market up ahead. We are always glad to be on our bikes because parking can be difficult.
Forest Home Farms was a thriving farm run by Ruth and Travis Boone for most of the twentieth century. Ruth willed the farm to the city of San Ramon in memory of her husband. Today many special events are held there, and on most Saturdays in the warm months, one can take a tour of the grounds, where there are sheep running in the meadow and there is a huge barn with all sorts of tractors, both ancient and fairly modern. This farmers market usually has live music, and it has many crafts stalls as well as food and produce stalls.
A trip by bicycle to this spot makes for a memorable Saturday.