shellfish

Beer and Bivalves

A scant 10 minutes after stepping out of my car in Olympia, I’m already slurping raw oysters. My first stop on a road trip to Washington’s state capital is the Olympia Farmers Market, a year-round affair that bustles with shoppers selecting fresh produce, locally-raised meat, cut flowers, artisanal goods, and local crafts, against a backdrop of live music. The air at the market, situated about a block away from Puget Sound, smells deeply of seaweed and salt — rather like oysters....

Lake Chelan AVA, Washington

Chelan County

Because Stemilt’s wines are naturally fermented — a finicky process that relies on the yeast naturally present on the grapes to ferment the juice — Jaime takes care to sanitize each cork before yanking it from the barrel so as not to compromise the wine inside....

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A Treasure Trove of Truffles

It’s a chilly February morning, and we are out walking through the woods near Issaquah. A gauzy veil of wintry sunshine hangs like gossamer around the treetops, the forest smells damp and inviting, and Stella and Lidia, two adorably moptopped dogs, scamper through the undergrowth at breakneck speed, so excited and joyful that you can practically see the smiles on their faces....

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The Lure of Lummi

"So what is there to do on the island?" I hear a visitor ask the woman in front of me at her driver’s-side window. We’re waiting in line for the tiny, open-air car ferry to transport us to Lummi Island, just a five-minute ride from the small mainland terminal....

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Have it Your Whey

Cherry Valley Dairy churns natural, sustainable, healthy practices into every product it makes....

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GRuB Digs In

Growing food is a vehicle for social change at an Olympia nonprofit....

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Camping With Julia

“I would far prefer to have things happen as they naturally do, such as the mousse refusing to leave the mold, the potatoes sticking to the skillet, the apple charlotte slowly collapsing. One of the secrets of cooking is to learn to correct something if you can, and bear with it if you cannot.”...

tea

The Northwest Tea Festival

“Tea is the second most popular beverage in the world,” points out Rosanoff [the first being water]. “It’s changed and adapted to different cultures and that’s what is fun about it—to see Korean tea ceremony and Japanese tea ceremony next to each other.”...

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Bites and Beers in Bellingham

I know locals who complain that Bellingham can’t keep an upscale restaurant alive. At one time there were several fine dining destinations, like Nimbus, Flats and Tivoli. In recent years those businesses have dwindled and in their place has come a Portland-like plethora of brewpubs, sandwich shops, and food trucks that seems to fit the town's casual approach....

Grape Harvest

Spirits in Yakima Valley

Like many Seattleites, most of my previous trips to the Yakima Valley centered on wine tasting. On a recent trip, the goal was no different. Wine tasting was first on our list. But as we soon discovered, the tasting opportunities don’t end with wine....

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A Pollinator Pathway

Along a swath of Columbia Street, thin strips of what used to be grass are now humming microcosms. Bees, moths, butterflies, and the occasional hummingbird flit from lavender flowers to columbines and trilliums, dutifully pollinating as they go....

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Seaweed Camp

I’m hauling an 11-foot seaweed snake over the bow of my kayak and slicing off the blade with a pocket knife. Harvesting kelp blades in this fashion allows the seaweed to keep growing, making it truly 100% sustainable. “We’re giving it a haircut,” says Jennifer Adler, nutritionist, owner of Passionate Nutrition and founder and co-leader of our three-day Seaweed 101 adventure on Lopez Island....

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Arboreal Agriculture- The Beacon Food Forest

The seeds for the Beacon Food Forest were planted in 2009, in a Permaculture class led by Jenny Pell and Marisha Auerbach. As a final project, student groups planned installations using all they had learned about designing for sustainability....

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We Will Rockwell

Willowood Farm—you have to practically wade through bald eagles to get there—is in the central, section of long, skinny Whidbey Island. These days, it’s as lovely a stretch of farmland as you could find driving through the Skagit Valley, but it’s also the farmland that almost wasn’t....

becky and squid

The Jig Is Up

Suddenly I feel the tug on the end of my line. A dull weight bends the tip of the pole down slightly. I pull my rod up in the air, reeling furiously, and go mad with joy, screaming out “I GOT ONE! I GOT ONE! SQUID ON THE LINE! HAHAHAHAHAHA” My neighbors are both slightly disturbed by my intensity and proud of me for my first ever squid....

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On The Marc in Walla Walla

"No way!" I replied, rather ungraciously, when Kyle Mussman, owner of the Marcus Whitman hotel in Walla Walla and its lovely restaurant The Marc, made me an outrageous offer. "A seven course no-carb Chef's Table tasting menu on a Saturday night? The chef's going to kill you!"...

walla walla

Walla Walla Ooh La La!

Yearning for a taste of France minus the ten hour flight and the expensive air fare? "It's Walla Walla!" chorus a trio of French winemakers, all of whom live and make wine in the adorably-named town....

richard sakuma tea plantation

Farming Tea in Skagit Valley

Ask where tea comes from, and people imagine vast plantations in China, India, or Japan. But this common beverage doesn't have to possess such an exotic provenance: Washington's got its own, little-known, small-scale tea farm....

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Quillisascut Farm

Quillisascut means different things to different people. To some it's a farm nestled in the hills of northeastern Washington, to others it's an artisanal goat cheese served at restaurants across the state. Quillisascut is also a farm-to-table school, one that often leaves participants with a profoundly different perspective on the connection between land, plate, and community....

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The Blessings of Orcas Island

George the alpaca is nibbling a carrot from the palm of my hand. His fuzzy snout is surprisingly slobber-free. Before long, the entire troop of alpacas on Once in a Blue Moon Farm is at the fence, wanting snacks....

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If Not Now, Then Wenatchee

This wind-blown stretch of the mighty Columbia creates tasty wine and hard cider, roasts incredible coffee, inspires talented chefs, and has sprouted a CSA program and market with a downright thrilling dream....

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A Tale of Two Peninsulas

After a century and a half of struggle, the Washington coast is ready for its culinary close-up...

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Small Town, Big Market-Port Townsend

Port Townsend is known for many things: historic buildings, wooden boats, walkability and the sort of scenery that makes people move here from other, likely warmer, regions. But day trips aren't any fun if the food isn't good, and that might explain the town's recent notoriety. It's delicious....

Yakima Valley Grown Goodness

The Yakima Valley has a long history of growing food. Wine grapes were first planted there in 1869, hops in 1872, and fruit orchards in 1887....