Taste of Wahkiakum!
Wow, Taste of Wahkiakum, who knew? Living down here in evenTinierTown*, I really didn't think we'd have our very own "Taste" but apparently I was wrong. This is exciting, not just because it is an excuse to eat, shop, and talk food--and really, who needs more than that? But wait, there's more: with any luck, I will find all the local hidden food treasures gathered together in one place; it's as if someone designed the perfect "welcome to the county "gift for a kitchenmage!
* Tinytown has been allocated to Port Townsend, WA by one of the most amazing pastry artists I've seen in a while. Go check out this thread on eGullet and be awed.
I have been lucky enough to partake of a few local gems:
- Springer salmon--We were lucky enough to be invited to the sharing of the first springer catch this year; these are expecially tasty Rogue River salmon, fat and luscious and as good as Copper River any day...plus, in this case, free!
- Willapa Bay oysters--barely cooked, sprinkle salt and pepper, savor
- Homemade wine--apricot, blueberry, and blackberry wine...and maybe a couple of others...and maybe there was some stronger apricot stuff, too... i just sit there while G. opens bottles and pours yet another glass of fruity goodness
- Shallon Winery's orange chocolate wine. Okay, so it's across the river in Astoria, but it's worth the extra drive. This wine is wrapped like a truffle in half a dozen layers of paper and ribbons, and tastes like an exotic confection; the chocolate is real, magically suspended in the subtley orange wine. I like it in small doses, drizzled on desserts (or, as the label says, "a friend") because of its richness, but it does avoid the dangerously cloying sweetness that seems inevitable from the description with a slight bite that comes from...nah, that's ruin it, you have too try it yourself.
But I know there are people raising goats (if they don't make cheese, I will), and there's a guy in the next valley who delivers organic milk, and cows grazing in fields (there used to be someone who would raise you a cow with the marbling of your choice but I can't find them), and more loal people who fish...and then there's the elk across the road.
The inaugural Taste of Wahkiakum will be held on May 28 at the Elochman Slough Marina in Cathlamet. I am eagerly awaiting further details and will post an update when I hear more. I certainly wouldn't promise that the Taste would be worth the trip in itself, but it's a lovely area, with lots of water and beautiful forests, and a number of lovely bed and breakfasts. And you will leave feeling relaxed. The last people who visited us sent email after they'd been back in Seattle several days saying they were having a hard time getting back into the city, they were still just too relaxed. (too relaxed? how could you be "too" relaxed...)