With spring in the air and wanderlust in full effect, many of us are looking for adventure. The Cuyama Buckhorn is offering a weekend getaway not far from home (and with some local ties) with its upcoming Wild Flour Weekend.
The New Cuyama hotel, like so many others, had to delay a similar planned weekend last April, but it's back with a weekend of events planned to be safe and fun.
Fans of Baker's Outpost — and there are many — will be excited to know that baker Laura Journey will be taking part in the activities, hosting a bread-making class.
Journey, who recently opened her first storefront on Truxtun Avenue, frequently uses flour from Tehachapi Heritage Grain Project, which is another participant of the weekend.
Sherry Mandell, who founded the project with Alex Weiser of Weiser Family Farms in Tehachapi, will lead a discussion about heritage grains and milling. The movement to provide a variety of non-GMO, heirloom grains for use by chefs, bakers, home cooks and brewers has continued to grow since 2015.
Restoring the state’s rich, grain-growing heritage, which began in the 1760s when missions were established across the state, is the project's mission.
In addition to the discussion, Tehachapi Heritage Grain Project's efforts will also be evident in the weekend's farm to table dinner, created by the Buckhorn's executive chef Daniel Horn. The meal, inspired by the theme of flour and edible flowers, will also feature chicken from Bakersfield's Autonomy Farms as well as grains, flowers and more from partners Rock Front Ranch, Santa Barbara Cheese Co., Grist & Toll and Capay Mills.
The three-course dinner starts with a choice of white asparagus tips with green asparagus puree, crispy grains, wildflower honey crème fraiche and flowers or English pea lasagna with ricotta, spelt flour pasta, smoked fresh mozzarella, mint, pea shoot pesto and pea shoot and flower salad.
The entree is a choice of pan-roasted flounder served with grain risotto, sheep’s milk cheese, haricot vert and wildflower beurre blanc or roasted chicken breast with whole wheat sourdough stuffing, wild mushroom, baby carrots, smokey chicken jus and wild arugula.
For dessert, everyone will be served tres leches cake with cornmeal, wildflower honey-infused cream, berries tossed in caramelized sugar and edible flowers.
The weekend's events also include a chance to view the spring blooms at Carrizo Plain National Monument, which is a short drive from the hotel. Guests will be provided with a to-go picnic lunch also designed by Horn.
Breakfast boxes, which will be delivered to guests' rooms to enjoy at their leisure, will also highlight the bounty of area farms and ranches including SZ Ranch free-range eggs, SB Pistachio Co. pistachios, Rock Front Ranch Cuyama honey and house aged SB Cheese Co. cheddar biscuits.
The Cuyama Buckhorn is likely a familiar name to longtime residents. Built in 1952, the iconic roadside motel was a frequent site passing through Santa Barbara County on the way to the coast.
It has enjoyed a renaissance under new owners Ferial Sadeghian and Jeff Vance, L.A.-based designers and the owners of iDGroup, who purchased the motel three years ago.
A far cry from its rough and tumble past, the Buckhorn has been renovated with luxury rooms, two outdoor dining spaces, revived outdoor lounge space, open-air cocktail bar, heated 60-by-20-foot pool with fountains and large jacuzzi, outdoor theater and screening area with large lawn and outdoor projector screen and much more.
Rooms for the Wild Flour Weekend on March 19 and 20 start at $419.50 a night (for two adults) and include all the aforementioned activities. For an additional fee, guests can add on a DIY spa experience with products to enjoy in their room as well as sparkling wine or an equestrian experience, allowing them to bond with a horse matched to each rider for a riding and grooming session.
Reservations can be made at cuyamabuckhorn.com or by calling 766-2825. Cuyama Buckhorn is located at 4923 Primero St. in New Cuyama.