The Gourmet Girls Event at Buttonwood Farm & Winery

Dear Friends and Followers,

Gourmet Girls Denise and Gail were pleased to host a three-course luncheon at Buttonwood Farm & Winery recently. We can wax poetic about the charms of Buttonwood: the organic peaches, the flower garden, the pond where they hold their amazing All-Farm Dinner each summer, and of course the first-class wines, but their barbecue grill is perhaps one of the most unique aspects of Buttonwood.

A little history: In 1971, Toby Zorthian, brother of Gourmet Girl at Large Seyburn Zorthian who is one of the owners of Buttonwood, found some oil buoys that had washed up on a Santa Barbara Beach. He took them to Buttonwood (a horse training facility at the time) and welder Gunnar Johansson made them into this spectacular grill. Buttonwood has been using it ever since. They’ve roasted pig on a spit, grilled four turkeys at a time, and barbecued numerous other summer feasts. We’re proud to say that Finley the Fish (14 lbs plus) was also laid to rest on this grill! Here we are doing the prep.

The presentation of Finley the Fish went over well, despite the fact that he was also wrapped in chicken wire. We owe thanks to Seyburn for this ingenious idea. It made it so much easier to turn Finley on the grill when the time came. I failed to mention that we Gourmet Girls always name our whole grilling fish. The first whole fish we grilled was called Wilbur (12 lbs plus), and Lindsey, our cookbook designer, picked him up at the LA Fish Market at 4 am and drove him all the way to Ventana Campground in Big Sur for one of our yearly Gourmet Girls camping trips. We had enough leftovers to make some mouthwatering eggs benedict for everyone the next morning!

The rest of the meal at Buttonwood included a peach and prosciutto salad, grilled asparagus, and for dessert our Lemon Ricotta Crepes. The guests seemed delighted with the menu and gave us a standing ovation! We, of course, took a humble bow and look forward to doing another event at Buttonwood in the future.


Demoing the crepe-making for our guests was a highlight for both them and us. All three of the recipes we made for lunch are in our Gourmet Girls Go Camping Cookbook, but as you can see you don’t need to be out in the wilderness to try them out. You can also prepare them in your own backyard.

So, with summer on the horizon, whether you’re tent camping, RV-ing, or planning a summer solstice celebration, we hope you’ll get outdoors and try some of the delicious recipes in our cookbook.

Happy Summer Everyone!

The Gourmet Girls on Fire
Gail, Denise and Lindsey