So Santa Cruz County may be lacking in variety of restaurants, but everyday I rejoice in the abundance of produce and wonderful markets here!
For instance, we picked up a dozen Miyagi oysters (pic below) from Bill the Oyster Man at the Aptos farmer's market on Sat. This market runs year round from 8-noon on Sat. at Cabrillo College. $10 for a dozen large, briney Miyagi oysters that he reportedly gets from Puget Sound. We enjoyed them at home w/ our favorite condiments (like mignonette), but after our first shucking attempt, we decided it's much funner and easier to slurp them at Bill's stand. He does all the work (and makes it look easy!), while we get to enjoy. His condiments are pretty good too. Cost at the stand is $1 for Miyagis, clams, mussels while Kumamoto oysters are $1.50. See his website for more info. He also shows up at the Wed. market in Santa Cruz.
After the farmer's market, we drove to Soquel w/ the intention of scoping out a fish market called The Fish Lady. We weren't impressed w/ that store, but were happy that it led us to Sunnyside Produce right next door (2520 Main Street, Soquel; 831-476-8904). Open 7 days a week from 7am-7pm. Small open air farm stand market like the kind that you see roadside in some parts of Gilroy or Watsonville. Nice selection of produce and local specialty products. Bought some fresh-looking asparagus, poppy cot apricots, manilla mangoes from Mexico, Vidalia onions. They also had lots of fava beans and English peas. Very reasonable prices and nice supplement to the farmer's market. They said they buy from some local farms, but also go up to SF to a wholesale place since they also carry non-local goods. Read somewhere that they carry a brand of tortilla chip called Taco Works that are supposed to be good, so will check that out. Anyone heard of these or tried them?