And hello again!  I’m back here on my mission:  Why live anywhere else?  Let’s talk coffee, beer and wine!

As every coffee lover knows, Washington is pretty much the coffee capital of the United States.  Starbucks, the biggest coffee chain in the world, was founded in Seattle.  The original Starbucks can be found at 1912 Pike Place.  We have more coffee bean roasters per capita than anywhere else in the US.  And if you’re in to small, independent coffee shops and cafes, there is no shortage of them here.  State routes, highways and even the small back roads are often filled with small, drive through coffee stops, reminiscent of old photo huts.  And because there are so many coffee entrepreneurs out there, these places are constantly working to push the envelope of creativity.  So whether you like your coffee “black as midnight on a moonless night” -Agent Dale Cooper via Twin Peaks, a crazy caffeinated concoction or a fancy frozen frappe, you’re bound to find something new and unique to broaden your cuppa joe horizons.

And for the beer lovers, Washington State is the nation’s #1 hops grower.  We grow 70% of the nation’s hops used to make countless numbers of beers.  And 2/3’s of the hops grown in Yakima Valley are exported to countries all over the world!  There are 146 active breweries in Washington, now that’s a lot of beer.  And there are even entire books written on beer in the Pacific Northwest.  Wikipedia will provide a complete list of the breweries in our state, but here are some main attractions:  Elysian Brewing Company, Pike Brewing Company, Pyramid Breweries, Redhook Ale Brewery, Rogue Ales and Scuttlebutt Brewing Company.  And May through October, there are more than 30 beer festivals state wide, throw Oregon in the mix and there are over 40.  If you love to celebrate beer, there’s no place better to celebrate than Washington State.    Interested in a complete list of Washington’s breweries and brewpubs?  Check out these guys:  The Washington Beer Blog

Finally, for the oenophiles out there, Washington State is the second largest wine producer in the nation, home to over 750 wineries.  Our state’s vineyards lie at the same latitude as the classic wine growing regions of France.   Washington wine touring information is broken down into 8 regions and the industry welcomes 2.4 million visitors annually.   The South Sound/Olympic Peninsula area has more than 20 wineries alone!  There are several annual events throughout our region including Olympic Peninsula Wineries Red Wine & Chocolate in February, Northwest Wine and Cheese Tour in April, Lavender Celebration in July, Dungeness Crab and Seafood Festival in October and the Harvest Wine Tour in November.  Check out http://olympicpeninsulawineries.org for for information on those.  And be sure to visit http://washingtonwine.org for more wine information and a free Washington State Wine Official Tour Guide.

Perhaps next time we’ll move on to everyone’s favorite:  FOOD!

 

 

Starting today, we’re going to get this blog rolling again.  And with that in mind, we’re going to start a new series of entries about why it is so fantastic to live here in Washington State, and then more specifically, Union, WA.  Union was rated by Forbes Traveler as one of the top 20 most beautiful places to live in the nation.

Did you know that Washington State has the highest number of high school graduates in the United States?  Our beautiful state is a leader in innovation and technology, housing some of the most important and influential companies in the world:  Microsoft, Amazon, Startbuck’s, Expedia, Costco, Boeing and Nordstrom.  Other large leaders include Zillow, REI, Nintendo, Jones Soda, Groundspeak, Sub Pop Records, Zulily, Eddie Bauer, Zumiez and countless others.  Washington State runs below the national average in it’s unemployment rate and even lower in the greater Seattle area, at 4.3% vs the US at 6.2%.  Education, innovation and employment!  Sign me up!

While I am a native Washingtonian, I have spent the last several decades living in Philadelphia, PA.  As the years went by,  the call of the Pacific Northwest and Washington in particular could no longer be ignored.  I packed my bags and a very large truck, and aided by some friends, made my trek back to this amazing place.  I have been incredibly amazed and stunned by the overwhelming beauty of this place and the infinite number of interesting places to see and things to do.  It is impossible to be bored here!  And I know what you’re thinking, a question I heard dozens and dozens of times from friends on the East Coast, “Doesn’t it rain there all the time?!”  And the answer to that is:  NO!  Did you know that Washington State gets less rainfall annually than Atlanta, Boston, New York, Houston, New Orleans, Philadelphia, Washington DC and Miami?!!  And when you live in Western Washington, there is also very little snow.  So, it is my mission here to convince people, even just a few, that they should come join us to live in this spectacular paradise.  My question is:  Why live anywhere else?

Stay tuned for more information and factoids!

Photo Dec 02, 10 21 21