Afternoon Delight

Down the street from Shelley’s house sits one of Yakima Valley’s favorite hangouts.  On an 80-degree afternoon, the first Friday of June, we met our good friend Chef Jessica Smith in a hop field, to pair her culinary creations with Bale Breaker Brewing Company‘s daily tap offerings. Just outside of town off Highway 24 on the way … Continued


Either you love it, or you don’t think that much about it.  There doesn’t seem to be a whole lot in between.  I’m talking rhubarb here.  It’s like the red-headed stepchild of the vegetable patch.  If it’s not in your DNA, you disregard it—always choosing around it when presented with a rhubarb dessert opportunity, even … Continued

Salmon for Flowers

Driving into a neighborhood in the middle of Toppenish, Washington, I find myself surprised.  I recognize Les Schwab and the school bus depot, but as I pull off of Asotin Avenue, wedged in-between some houses on an ordinary side street, there is an open field of almost two acres of peonies.  “Adeline’s Peonies” by the … Continued

Ag Connections

WSDA Local Buying Mission Tour and Business Networking Social On a recent brisk, blissfully blue sky morning, rooted went on a mission.  Meeting in the early shade of the Bale Breaker Brewery in Moxee, Washington, we fell in with the Washington State Department of Agriculture and a host of ag-producers and ag-buyers to hit the … Continued

Rebel Bloom

This spring has been reminding me of a poorly cracked egg.  I just want that quick sunny side up I was expecting, but instead there has been a slow leaking of the season, slipping through the cracks a little at a time, revealing itself in a muddled and unhurried fashion.  For an area that is … Continued

Asparagus, the Forerunner

If you listen very carefully, you can hear it.  The asparagus is finally popping out of the ground.  Well maybe you can’t exactly hear it, but you can certainly see it.  You don’t even have to live near an asparagus field.  It’s popping up all over town.  Boiled or steamed, quiches or frittatas, pickled, grilled, … Continued


Driving the highways and byways of the Yakima Valley, you can see it.  The trees are finally waking.  As the shiny new growth pushes its way through the tree tips, the flower buds fist up, just waiting to burst open into fat, full blooms.  Beautiful, yes; but really, it’s just a natural byproduct of development … Continued

The Twining

A hop yard is a distinctive looking piece of agriculture.  Empty or full, a wire and pole trellis system 18 feet high and dozens of acres deep is a hard thing to miss on the roadside.  While most folks in the world are scarcely aware of how a hop is grown, anyone from the Yakima … Continued

Dog Days of Spring

Now that the sun has finally decided to show up, we’re hungry.  But not for the same old same, we want something with a little panache.  Something as delectable and laid back as a warm spring afternoon in the Valley.  Lucky for us, Winey Dogs has just what we are angling for.  On 6th Avenue … Continued

Spring Awakening (Almost)

A big blue sky has been an elusive sighting this winter, but on a recent morning, Gary Morford and I caught one.  Gary, the owner of Green Acre Farms in the Lower Valley, has graciously agreed to let me tag along in the pick-up for a few hours while he does his daily farm survey.  … Continued