EATERS DIGEST: Start the day at Busy Bees, Happy Boy Farms floods and a virtual D.E.W.N. wine tasting

Chef Ty Pearce serves up from-scratch breakfast classics at Busy Bees Café and Catering in Capitola.
(Via Facebook)

Chef Ty Pearce offers comforting breakfast classics at Busy Bees Café and Catering in Capitola, Happy Boy Farms launches a GoFundMe to help keep it afloat after a devastating flood and a virtual wine tasting to challenge your palate.

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Another week of wet weather has saturated the Central Coast. While all that water is a blessing for many things that grow in the soil, it has unfortunately also brought destruction to at least one local farm.

It will take months before the flooded fields at Happy Boy Farms can be farmed again, says owner Greg Beccio. The organic Watsonville farm lies near the Pajaro River, which broke its banks and covered everything in 5 feet of water. More info on how to help, if you can, below.

Mushrooms, however, are flourishing throughout the region. Next month, celebrate the world of fungus with the Santa Cruz Museum of Natural History and sign up now for its calendar of events. Plus, dive into the experimental world of wine with Bonny Doon Vineyard’s Nicole Walsh and Randall Grahm at a virtual tasting next week and get your buzz on with a coffee-and-beer collaboration at the Slough Brewing Collective.

And if all this rain is getting you down, warm yourself from the inside out with inviting breakfast options at the new Busy Bees Café & Catering in Capitola, featuring comforting classics like biscuit sandwiches and gooey cinnamon rolls.


Happy Boy Farms, a mainstay at local farmers markets offering some of the best organic vegetables in the area, is underwater. Two weeks of nonstop rain have drenched the 35-year-old organic farm outside of Watsonville, flooding the fields with 5 feet of water. The damage is catastrophic, says owner Greg Beccio, and it will take months to recover. Not only has the farm lost most of the current production, there is now nowhere to plant the spring transplants in the greenhouses, and the dedicated harvest and packing crews are facing the possibility of losing their jobs.

Storm Central keeps you updated as we watch, wait and assess. Check back here as Lookout correspondents reach out across...

Beccio has turned to the community for help and launched a GoFundMe with the ambitious goal of raising $250,000. Unfortunately, Beccio told Lookout, insurance is for liability purposes only and won’t cover acts of God. While the farm has rolled with many punches over the years, it has never been challenged the way it is now, Beccio says on the donation site’s page: “We are grateful for the support and dedication you have shown us throughout the years. So now we are asking for your help so we can continue to provide food for you, your family and our families.” Donate here.

Fungi fun continues in Santa Cruz County with Fungus February at the Santa Cruz Museum of Natural History. Register now for mushroom-themed classes and demonstrations running throughout next month, from nature journaling with naturalist Melinda Nakagawa to a mushroom walk through DeLaveaga Park for adventurous middle school students. These classes are already filling up, so grab your spot now. More info at

Eat this

If the nonstop gloomy weather and wave after wave of intense rain have you down, I have the cure: breakfast at Busy Bees Café in the Begonia Plaza off of 41st Avenue in Capitola. Not only will chef Ty Pearce’s from-scratch menu warm you from the inside out, but his wide, friendly smile as he carves huge slices of homemade bread from behind the counter is sure to brighten your day.

Some might remember Pearce from Ty’s Eatery, a pop-up he ran out of the then-Santa Cruz Food Lounge from 2015 to 2016. He’s back with a breakfast and brunch menu of memorable takes on the classics. Choose from breakfast burritos, biscuit sandwiches, toasts smothered in goodies, stacked sandwiches on housemade bread and breakfast bowls that will tide you over until lunch.

I’m still dreaming about a simple but perfectly executed biscuit sandwich with eggs, sausage, cheese and a sweet-spicy combo of both chipotle sauce and honey. The plush biscuit miraculously held together the whole time — although it didn’t take me very long to devour it. A softball-sized cinnamon roll covered in frosting and more cinnamon-sugar drizzle barely made it to the table before it was gone. Breakfast burrito stans shouldn’t miss out on the Bene Burrito, filled with scrambled eggs, ham, spinach, avocado, breakfast potatoes and hollandaise sauce. A particular shout-out to the Reuben, made with housemade corned beef piled between two thick slices of dramatically swirled rye bread with melted Swiss, sauerkraut and Thousand Island dressing.

Right now, Busy Bees, which also offers catering services, is open only on Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., although Pearce plans to open for more days during the week in the coming months. There’s no seating inside the café, but an outdoor patio can seat around 30 guests. (It’s also gated all the way around, which I appreciated as the mother of a flight-risk toddler.) View the menu, hours and location at


Nicole Walsh and Randall Grahm at Popelouchum.
(Via Bonny Doon Vineyard)

On Wednesday at 5 p.m., join Randall Grahm and Nicole Walsh, two iconic local winemakers, as they dive into the first wine club shipment for D.E.W.N., Bonny Doon Vineyard and Ser Winery’s newly launched Distinctive Explorative Wine Network. Grahm and Walsh have been working together for more than 20 years to craft the experimental wines at Bonny Doon Vineyard, and Walsh also has her own label, Ser. The two recently teamed up again to rebrand the Ser tasting room in Aptos Village to feature both BDV and Ser wines.

At this first virtual tasting, Walsh and Grahm will guide club members through the first shipment, which includes a curated selection of wines from both wineries and from Popelouchum, Grahm’s experimental vineyard in San Juan Bautista. If you enjoy expertly crafted wines that will challenge and intrigue you, this event is for you. One note: You must join D.E.W.N. and pick up your wines at the tasting room to attend. More info at

The Slough Brewing Collective in Watsonville is teaming up with San Juan Bautista’s Vertigo Coffee Roasters for Jitterfest Dark, a coffee- and beer-themed event that’s sure to be a buzz. This Saturday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., head to the Slough’s brewery and taproom at 65 Hangar Way for 12 hours of caffeinated fun, including a tap takeover of six unique coffee-infused beers featuring Vertigo coffee; espresso service by Calavera Coffee; a latte art throwdown; vegan donuts; live music and more. See the event poster on Instagram at @thesloughbeer.