Search

Santa Clarita Publisher Shares Passion For Food In Magazine

There is a new publication in the Foodie world: Life and Thyme magazine.

A gorgeous publication, printed on luxuriously thick paper, with stunning, full bleed photography, and global stories, Life and Thyme is the magazine for Foodies who want to slow down and digest content, without squinting at a screen, or clicking through endless links.

IMG_3765

Life and Thyme adds a sense of permanence in a world of digital flight.

Last month, Life and Thyme held a launch party for the publication of the magazine’s second issue. Based out of Santa Clarita, the magazine’s publisher is Antonio Díaz (a member of the Santa Clarita Foodies Facebook group). Hosted at the Valencia Whole Foods Market, the party featured special guest Uli Nasibova, owner and chef at Gelateria Uli, whose product serves as cover model for second issue of Life and Thyme.

Nasibova described the birth of Gelateria Uli, the importance of top quality ingredients, and how flavors, such as vanilla, change from year to year, and crop to crop. In other words, Nasibova gave a lecture version of what encompasses every article in Life and Thyme: the how and why of wonderful food.

Guests were treated to full servings of Uli’s creations: Bako Farmo Sweet Seedless Watermelon sorbet; Organic Black Plum sorbet (my favorite); and Spring Flame Peach sorbet. While the watermelon and peach tended towards the sweet side, the Organic Black Plum sorbet had a nice astringent bite to balance the sweet. All sorbets had a heavenly, smooth texture.

IMG_3762

Lastly, Nasibova served guests affogato, a scoop of decadent vanilla gelato topped with the hot shot of espresso. THIS is how everyone should take their coffee.

Turning to the publisher, Díaz described the vision for Life and Thyme as telling the story of food: the farmers; the appliances; the chefs; the servers; and more. In a culture that often focuses on celebrity chefs and top 10 lists, this magazine endeavors to give a panoramic vision of the culinary world, top to bottom, front to back, in an artful, measured and comprehensive manner.

For this girl, who learned to cook using Betty Crocker, and developed a passion for food from early Food Network cooking shows, featuring Sara Moulton and Ming Tsai, Jacques Torres, and the Two Hot Tamales, Life and Thyme magazine is a welcome respite from the shallow flood of flash and dazzle which predominates today’s popular food culture.

Accessible, exquisite, inspirational, and educational, Life and Thyme is a magazine to be shelved and saved, like a book, well deserving of a seat at the food culture table.

If I set this magazine down for more than 5 minutes, someone in my house is quick to snatch it up, and read for herself. The magazine is that inviting.

IMG_3760

Fourteen stories, plus five recipes from professional chefs, the magazine begs you to slow down and savor.

The opening story is a kicker, about the crafting of La Marzocco espresso machines. A company based in Florence, Italy, and claiming a proud creative heritage dating back to the Renaissance, the Bambi family is an inspiration for all quality artisans. More “workshop than assembly line,”

“…on a single made-to order machine, there are often
only three people who work to produce it.
A mechanic is fully dedicated to hydraulics,
a technician for the wiring, and a serviceman
who reviews and bench tests the entire
appliance when it is compete…”

I recommend reading this gem of an article while sipping a brew from local coffee purveyor House Roots Coffee, which uses La Marzocco machines.

I am a sucker for most anything from Spain, and enjoyed the story telling technique of Stef Ferrari in “A Carnival of Culinary Tradition on the Spanish Coast.” Ferrari eats her way through the city of San Sebastian, in the Basque region of Northern Spain, describing the Spanish food culture of nightly pub crawls, sampling tapas, or pintxo (in Basque). Nothing like would be imagined by most Americans, the Spanish tradition of bar tapas is a family affair, from grandpa to the newborn baby, entire families setting out together, enjoying multigenerational camaraderie at a local establishment.

Ferrari recounts thin slices of acorn fed Iberico ham, strip steak with a crunch of sea salt, syrup soaked pastries topped with toasted almond spackle, gin and tonics carefully adorned with flowers, all-you-can-drink cider houses, and more. Reminiscent of Peter Mayle’s A Year in Provence, Ferrari conveys not only the wonder of the food, but also the warmth of the people, and the allure of the place.

Inspirational is “Recipe for Progress,” by Nicole Gulotta. Touching on the birth of Alma, a restaurant in Los Angeles, the article focuses on Alma Community Outreach (ACO), a philanthropic arm of Alma restaurant. Alice Walker would be proud, no doubt, to see how the modern school garden movement she spearheaded is playing out through ACO.

“It’s very much a needs based program…customized to each school…
principals…ask, ‘What do you guys do?’ we say, ‘No, what do you need?’
Teachers have so much on their plate, and we want to lift the burden
by offering access to florists, professional chefs, and photographers.
It’s really about connecting the resources we already have to the
schools and to the larger community.”

Distributed globally, Life and Thyme is truly a locally based gem. Kudos to publisher and local Santa Clarita resident, Antonio Díaz, for a job well done.

Life and Thyme is on sale now at the Valencia Whole Foods Market, or online at lifeandthyme.com 96pp $16/issue