Twenty-five years ago, Alice Waters was raiding Andrea Crawford's lettuce patch for Chez Panisse salads. These days, Crawford's selling 20,000 pounds of oregano a year to Chipotle.
Crawford, her husband Robert Dedlow, and her son Nathan Peitso moved to the Los Angeles area in the mid-1980s, when the food scene was still so weak that they drove back up to the Bay Area on a monthly basis to load up on quality groceries. The family was selling a lot of lettuces and herbs to Wolfgang Puck at the time, but that chef and maybe one or two others seemed to be the only Southern California chefs interested in local, seasonal, grown-with-love products.
Luckily for us all in the Southland, Los Angeles is now a shining star in the food world -- some would even say we've surpassed the Bay Area in that regard. Of course, organic food is becoming more accessible to most people all the time. The fact that companies like Walmart now sell organic products is controversial, but Crawford supports such a move. In fact, she now sells herbs to Chipotle, the large chain restaurant that prides itself on its support of smaller suppliers.
Kenter Canyon Farms is something of an American Dream story: a working mother thinking creatively to build a mini-empire. Check out the gorgeous fields of Kenter Canyon Farms in the video.