“As far as the people that have to do with Cuyama Buckhorn, the ranchers and farmers that have been there for a long time, you will never leave a dinner with them where you don't get some new story that is worthy of a chapter in a book. They’ve been out there their whole lives and it's always fun to hear what they have to say.”
We’re in great company with Jeff Vance and Ferial Sadeghian, Owners of Cuyama Buckhorn, a timeless roadside resort in the heart of California’s high desert. Originally built in 1952 experiencing decades of glory days as the local watering hole for a booming oil town, Jeff and Ferial have taken meticulous care and personal attention in restoring the historic mid-century architecture and design, while bringing it into a new era with luxurious modern amenities.
Today, Cuyama Buckhorn is an intimate getaway for out of towners and a trusted community center for locals alike, filled with thoughtfully crafted meals, a bar where conversation flows effortlessly and revitalized rooms with stylistic nods to the past.
In this episode, Jeff and Ferial share how a mutual interest in exploring the world of hospitality, looking for a remote property that could provide an unexpected and unassuming destination experience, turned into so much more. How the joy of shared experiences with the local community, the creative spirit and sense of place at Cuyama Buckhorn in particular, creates a connection to the natural beauty of Cuyama Valley.
[1:30] Jeff grew up in and around Los Angeles with a bar seat view into the world of hospitality before pursuing a career and founding a company in architectural design. Ferial, originally from Iran, grew up with a love of travel and food, as she explored much of Europe and the Middle East with her family before finding her way to Los Angeles and joining iDGroup.
[10:00] Jeff “peel’s back the wallpaper” to share his personal connection to Cuyama Valley and the storied history of the Cuyama Buckhorn during its glory days throughout the 50’s & 60’s as a community watering hole in a booming oil town.
[14:35] It was an unexpected but welcomed involvement in the local town from the beginning for Jeff and Ferial, hosting an artist residency with storytelling opportunities around the property, and supporting independent farmers in what is considered a food desert due to big agriculture’s control over the local land.
[28:40] The Buckhorn is brimming with unexpected and unpretentious farm-to-table comfort food and farm-to-glass cocktail and wine programs where guests can enjoy meeting the farmers, foraging for ingredients, tasting the barrel-aging process as they savor the company they’re in.
[42:00] Whether you choose to hike, mountain bike or drive the Hidden Valley of Enchantment, there are interesting roads in all directions leading to the California coast, wine country or scenic central highway.
[47:00] There’s much growth and prosperity in the future for Cuyama Buckhorn, from refining the culinary menu, continuing community events, crafting wood fired dishes, concepting a spa experience and stewarding a sustainable garden.
Flamingo Hotel, Las Vegas
Jonathan Gold, Los Angeles Times Restaurant Critic
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