.The Picnic Basket

Locally aligned, thoughtfully combined

When Zach Davis got his MBA, he did so with the ambition of one day owning his own business. That goal manifested when he and his friend/business partner Kendra Baker were offered a commercial space near the Boardwalk in 2011.

The Picnic Basket was born. Zach’s business acumen and Kendra’s culinary talents are a peanut butter and jelly pairing; the café has now been running strong for over 12 years.

A humble yet elevated turkey sandwich is one menu highlight, served on locally sourced bread with avocado, greens, whole grain mustard, white cheddar cheese and pickled onions with turmeric. Zach calls it “truly the best sandwich” he’s ever had, calling the flavors and textures “a magical combo.”

Other sandwiches include a Reuben and a beet veggie combo with chickpea spread.

Open every day from 7am, they close at 4pm Mon-Wed and 8pm Thurs-Sun.

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What inspired you and Kendra?

ZACH DAVIS: We looked around at other local businesses that were making delicious food, and we wanted to combine these products under one roof and showcase the bounty of Santa Cruz to locals and visitors alike. It was also an opportunity to deeply connect with a community that we both love. Not much brings you closer to people than preparing and serving food.

What is your paramount focus?

Sourcing is really important to us and it’s very rewarding to work with the local agricultural community to bring in seasonal ingredients and turn them into menu items. I think sometimes people aren’t aware of how important the agriculture industry is to our county and community. Those farmers and farm workers are the ones who actually feed us.

125 Beach Street, Santa Cruz, 831-427-9946; thepicnicbasketsc.com

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