Washington's North Cascades region lies in the state's northwest sector and encompasses the cities of Anacortes, Bellingham, Burlingoton, Bow and La Conner. With the Salish Sea to the west and the Cascade Mountains to the east, the region provides a distinctly Northwest bounty. Read on to discover just a few places to stop for farm-fresh eats in the area.
U-Pick Berry Farms in Northwest Washington
Washington grows 92 percent of the nation’s red raspberries, and most of them come from this area. Captain Kendrick’s Memorial Hot Dog Wildlife Preserve—a roadside hot dog stand and zoo portrayed in Tom Robbins’s Another Roadside Attraction—doesn’t actually exist here in the Skagit Valley. But dozens of farm stands do, including Bow Hill Blueberries in Bow and Sakuma Bros. Farms and Markets in Burlington, with pick-your-own raspberry fields.
Chuckanut Drive Oysters
With an oyster farm at most every turn, shuckers will love Chuckanut Drive, a scenic byway dotted with sprawling farmline, historic storefonts and places to feast on oysters. Buy a bushel of bivalves from Taylor Shellfish, a dozen Pacifics from Blau Oyster or a half-dozen Kumamotos—and a bonus cliff’s-edge view—at The Oyster Bar.
Fresh-Caught Washington Prawns
Reserve time for dinner at Willows Inn on Lummi Island (a San Juan Island), where Food and Wine’s 2012 “Best New Chef” Blaine Wetzel may just have pulled a dozen fresh spot prawns from the Rosario Strait and cooked them covered in hot rock salt.
—Julie H. Case