Taste the Bounty of Petaluma Valley
A lot has changed since Petaluma was chartered in 1858. Through it all, Petaluma has stayed true to its roots as an area known for agricultural diversity. Artisan cheeses, organically-grown heirloom vegetables, all-natural free range poultry, and fresh-off-the-farm eggs are just a few of the products that give Petaluma its well-earned reputation as an area of delicious abundance.
Our community’s agricultural pride is on full display for the Butter & Egg Days Festival held annually in April. Brimming with authentic small town charm, the homegrown parade and festival on Saturday pays tribute to Petaluma’s place in history as the “World’s Egg Basket” and rich dairy land.
Harvest time in Petaluma
Even in Petaluma’s moderate climate, autumn brings a chill to the air and an orange glow to the countryside that be attributed to the sun reflecting off the tons of pumpkins grown in Petaluma. Authentic farm experiences beckon families to navigate a corn maze, hop on a hayride, play in the corn seed pit and of course, pick the perfect Petaluma pumpkin for carving.
Picked fresh that morning
Chat with farmers, taste produce picked that morning, and learn about sustainable farming practices at the Petaluma Farmers’ Markets. Whether you visit the year-round Tuesday morning market or the two seasonal market, you’ll find fresh produce, flowers, artisan cheeses and breads, fresh meat and fish as well as local crafts. The markets are a nonprofit organization dedicated to assisting and supporting local farmers by providing them opportunities to sell directly to the public. It’s all the real deal.
We specialize in happy cows
Gaze into the big brown eyes of a Jersey or Holstein cow, grazing contently on the verdant hills surrounding Petaluma and it’s easy to see why the products that come from Petaluma dairies are consistently recognized as some of the best in the country. Clover Sonoma was the first dairy west of the Mississippi to offer rBST-free milk. No wonder their iconic mascot, “Clo the Cow,” always has a smile.
How about some cheese with your wine?
For cheese aficionados, it is indeed ‘happy trails to you’ when following the California Cheese Trail. Sonoma County has the most cheese-makers per capita in the West and has been likened to Normandy, the famous French cheese region.
Just a few blocks from downtown, the Petaluma Creamery was recently named one of the “Best Artisan Cheese Shops in the Bay Area.” The creamery has been a Petaluma institution for more than a century. Stop by to sample cheese, discover your favorite and enjoy homemade ice cream, all made with milk from their pampered cows.
For a cheese-tasting day trip, Marin French Cheese Company is just 20 minutes from Petaluma on the way to Pt. Reyes National Seashore. Handcrafting award-winning cheeses for more than 150 years, Marin French Cheese is the longest continually operating creamery in the country. Enjoy their world-class Rouge et Noir Triple Cream Brie with an impromptu picnic next to their pond.
Explore some green acres
Whether you call it “agritourism” or you just want to know more about where your food comes from, Petaluma offers visitors an authentic experience. Book a “Flower Foraging” visit to Garden Valley Ranch where 8,000 rose bushes bloom May through October.
Extend an olive branch… and vine
Well-traveled folk often say Petaluma reminds them of Tuscany. Nestled in the hills west of Petaluma, McEvoy Ranch with 18,000 trees is the largest organic producer of Tuscan-style, estate-grown olive oil in the U.S. Or sample their distinctive wines from Petaluma Gap vineyards.
From the ground up
Baker Creek Heirloom Seed Store, also known as “The Seed Bank,” offers master gardeners and novice green thumbs more than 1,500 varieties of non-GMO seeds.
Blaze a farm trail
Sonoma County Farms Trails has been connecting people with farmers and ranchers since 1973. Pick up a map at the Petaluma Visitors Center or visit www.farmtrails.org to design an educational and tasty tour.