Lavender Harvest at Island Thyme

Orcas Island’s apothecary turns 20 and sees a sustainable future in aromatic artisan products

In the little hamlet of Olga on Orcas Island, Chris and Eliza Morris have built a garden paradise around their sustainable business, Island Thyme, a purveyor of delicious-smelling herbal lotions, salves, soaps and sprays that nourish the skin and body with a broad harvest of herbs such as chamomile, calendula, cinnamon, rose, and, of course, lavender.

Continue reading “Lavender Harvest at Island Thyme”

A Good Vintage: Of Time Lords, the Tardis, and Reinventing Ourselves through Wine

It’s official. I’m 50. Actually, I’m 51-and-a-half, but I guess it took that long for it to soak in.

Actually, that’s not true.

I joined AARP (www.aarp.com – they’re not a sponsor) the minute I turned 50, to get their great rates on a phone plan. I’ve always felt young and intend to continue to do so, but want to live squarely in the moment, embrace my zeitgeist, if you will.

Zeitgeisttime ghost – “spirit of the age.”

Our zeitgeist is an ephemeral ghost – as time always is, but now, we live with the “ghost in the machine,”. The spirit of our age is the cloud, the search bar, the meta. Information vast and wide, as it has never existed before.

It makes me feel like a Time Lord from Dr. Who.

And we all know that the elixir of the Time Lords must be is wine.

Continue reading “A Good Vintage: Of Time Lords, the Tardis, and Reinventing Ourselves through Wine”

Kitchen #7: The Truman Show

The Truman Apartments, 200 East 100 North, Provo, Utah (or thereabouts)

October, 1985

I wandered in and out of the brilliant stacks of cans,
and followed in my imagination by the store detective.

– Alan Ginsberg, “A Supermarket in California”

DEEP VOICE:

She is in a movie. She is 19 and a student at Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah.

College,

movie.

Same thing.

Continue reading “Kitchen #7: The Truman Show”

Betz Winery: Changing of the Guard

Five years after the sale of Betz Family Winery, the iconic winery continues to raise the bar

betz-griessel-article

by Shannon Borg

EVEN after 41 harvests in Washington wine, and 19 with Betz Family Winery, Master of Wine (MW) Bob Betz “doesn’t see a back porch in his future” any time soon.  In 2011, then Betz Family Winery’s 15th vintage, Bob and Cathy Betz started to explore what the next phase of their life would look like—both for themselves, and for the winery they created and shepherded into something of an iconic status.

Read more in Washington Tasting Room magazine.

The Best New Washington Wines

Washington wine is coming of age in a big way, with a tally of more than 750 wineries, top scorers in the national media, and exciting educational winemaking programs in Seattle and Walla Walla that are bringing young talent to the dynamic and ever-evolving vineyards and wineries in our state. The old guard is branching out to new projects (some crossing the border from Oregon to make wines with Washington grapes), and the younger generation is stepping up and bringing new energy to family businesses. Behold, the top new releases that best tell the evolving story of Washington wines.

Read more in Seattle magazine.

The Perfect White Wine for Winter: Riesling

White wine in winter? Yes, please! Here’s my latest article in Seattle magazine:

The Perfect White Wine for Winter: Riesling

Image by Melissa Kagerer

Last July, Chateau Ste. Michelle’s semiannual Riesling Rendezvous wine tasting event brought together hundreds of the true geeks of the wine world, excited to spend three days focused on a single grape variety. The only major conference focused on just one grape variety in the country, the rendezvous is a chance to taste Rieslings from Austria to New Zealand and beyond, and showcase this complex grape’s manifestations. And although most of us know Riesling is a great summer sipper, the versatile wine pairs beautifully with the foods of fall and winter as well.

Read more

Wine Spectator Reviews The Green Vine!

Thank you to Wine Spectator‘s Dana Nigro for her fabulous review of my book, The Green Vine in her blog, Mixed Case. How exciting! It will be in the December print issue of Wine Spectator, but you can read it now here:

http://www.winespectator.com/blogs/show/id/49190

Nigro calls The Green Vine “…a nice stocking stuffer of a book for eco-minded foodies who want to learn more about wine or for wine lovers who’ve decided it’s time to know more about sustainable, organic and biodynamic winegrowing.”

If you have a moment to write a short product review of The Green Vine on Amazon, that would be so great – thanks so much for your support!