By Doneice Woody
The Winters Chamber of Commerce will hold its first agri-tour of the year at K & J Orchard on Wednesday, March 26. K & J Orchard, on Gaddini Road in rural Winters, is a family-owned and -operated conventional farm, with a diverse selection of crops.
Owners James and Kalayada Beutel began farming in Yuba City in the early 1980s. By the 1990s, they had expanded into Winters on a 17-acre farm. James is a retired professor of pomology at UC Davis and Kalayada is a retired registered nurse. Their daughter and son-in-law, Aomboon and Tim Deasy, are in charge of the day-to-day operations.
Agri-tour participants will have an opportunity to stroll through the orchards with Tim and Kalayada, and learn about the 185 varieties of fruits and nuts their family farms. K & J Orchard is a year-round farm, and harvest usually begins in May with cherries, apricots, peaches, nectarines, plums and pluots. They grow an impressive 18 different varieties of cherries.
During the summer, their harvest continues with apples, pears, nuts, citrus fruits and persimmons, along with many others.
K & J Orchards sells their produce at more than 15 farmers markets, from the Bay Area all the way up to Reno. During the week, Tim is busy delivering to more than 80 restaurants. One of their many buyers is the world-renowned French Laundry in Yountville.
“We are excited to start this year’s agri-tours for the Winters Chamber of Commerce,” says Howard Hupe, the Chamber’s agri-tour director. “It is always a pleasure to share with the public the diversity of farming in the Winters area and all that it has to offer.”
On the day of the tour, participants will start their morning at 9 a.m. at Steady Eddy’s Coffee House, 5 E. Main St., where they will enjoy a coffee and pastry of choice. After their breakfast snack, participants will be escorted to K & J Orchard.
After touring the orchard, participants will be taken to The Clayground at 9 E. Main St., where owner Rebecca Bresnick Holmes will treat participants to a ceramic demonstration. Local artists sell their handcrafted one-of-a-kind goods at The Clayground, including beeswax candles, locally made soaps and lotions, jewelry, handcrafted knitwear and much more.
The tour will then move on to Turkovich Family Wines’ tasting room 304 Railroad Ave., where participants can sit and enjoy a small wine-tasting. Turkovich Family Wines is a family-owned and -operated winery. The tasting room additionally features cheese from the Winters Cheese Company.
The day will end with lunch at Preserve Public House at 200 Railroad Ave., known for its farm-to-table style food. The restaurant also offers an array of goods for sale, including jalapeño jelly, a variety of sea salts and dried fruit.
The tour costs $50, all-inclusive. For more information or to sign up, contact Winters Chamber Executive Director Sheri Neal at 530-795-2325 or firstname.lastname@example.org.