While Washington’s fertile soil and favorable climate mingle to facilitate abundant harvests year-round, fall is an especially delicious time to visit the state, including the north central region. From just-picked apples and cherries to handcrafted cheeses and German sausages, cities like Cle Elum, Lake Chelan, Cashmere and Leavenworth offer plenty of sweet and savory Washington treats.
1. Red Sky Orchards, Cle Elum
Wind whips through the big tent that houses Red Sky Orchards, where bushels of apricots and apples beckon. Be sure to sample the orchard’s private-label vino at the wine bar.
2. Lake Chelan Cheese, Lake Chelan
Lake Chelan Cheese, located inside Lake Chelan Winery, stocks an assortment of cheeses from all over the world. Try their mac and cheese souped up with the ends of whatever fromage is at hand.
3. Liberty Orchards, Cashmere
Invented by Liberty Orchards in 1920, Aplets and Cotlets are jellied confections dense with apricots or apples and walnuts. Take the factory tour to gain insight into Liberty Orchards’ careful candy-making process, taste a candy fresh from the factory and stock up on delicious souvenirs at the retail store.
4. Anjou BakeryCashmere
Warm your stomach with irresistible rustic breads and flaky pastries at Anjou Bakery. Don’t miss their extra-rich bread pudding made from croissants and house-made caramel or shortbread-crusted fruit pie filled with seasonal fruits.
6. Munchen Haus, Leavenworth
At this gem in the German-infused town of Leavenworth, visitors can savor sausages cooked on an open grill served with apple-cider sauerkraut and a variety of specialty mustards.
7. South, Leavenworth
Latin-inspired South makes margaritas like the fresh jalapeño-muddled Stinger that tempts visitors to taste outside Leavenworth’s eminent Bavarian theme.
8. ’59er Diner, Cashmere
If the Stinger’s not enough to give you the shakes, the ’59er Diner serves up 20 flavors of milkshakes and malts, including PB&J, and fresh-baked blackberry cobbler and apple crisp.
9. Blueberry Hills Farm, Manson
Located on the shore of Lake Chelan, Blueberry Hills Farm boasts savory country cooking (try famous cheese and fruit blitzes or choose from 24 flavors of soft-serve ice cream) and 20 acres of farmland growing 16 varieties of blueberries for your pickin’ pleasure.
—Julie H. Case
Photo courtesy of South, Mike Endsley