On our second trip to California Wine Country, in 1991, Rob and I discovered the Jimtown Store, a roadside place in the Alexander Valley that captured our imaginations and our tummies. Jimtown stocks an interesting collection of old-timey toys and candies, unique home and kitchen goods and oddball antiques—and it boasts a bona fide foodie pedigree (it was established by one of the partners in Silver Palate).
We’ve been there a number of times, as it’s the perfect spot to fill your belly in advance of an afternoon of wine tasting; we’re partial to the grilled-cheese sandwich and the rockin’ good, made-from-scratch chocolate pudding.
As if to torture ourselves, we’ve signed up for Jimtown’s e-mail newsletter, so monthly we get word of weekly food specials and monthly wine events, none of which we can experience. Sigh.
Until next week. Our anniversary trip takes us to Healdsburg just in time for the First Thursday Wine Tasting. We’ll be there with bells on. Meantime, we made sandwiches this week inspired by Jimtown’s current menu.
grilled cheese with summer vegetables
Slice a large-ish zucchini or summer squash (I used 2 of those 8-ball type squashes) into slices less than 1/4-inch thick.
Core a red bell pepper, cut into halves and press flat with your hand.
Drizzle vegetables with olive oil, sprinkle with salt & pepper and grill until slightly soft and a bit caramelized.
For each sandwich, take 2 slices of sourdough bread; drizzle one side of each slice with olive oil. Spread one slice with pesto, then add 1 or 2 slices of Provolone. Add a layer of zucchini, then pepper. Place bread slices openface on a grill; grill until the cheese begins to melt. Top with 1 or 2 more slices of Provolone, then bread; turn over and grill the second side until cheese melts.