Texas Hill Country is the second most visited wine region in the United States today. Only Napa Valley receives more visitors on an annual basis. The expansive multi-county area west of Austin is home to dozens of wineries and the Highway 290 corridor from Johnson City to Fredericksburg is literally packed with possibilities. The question […]

Food is an expression of culture and the perfect medium for sharing one’s culture. Philosophers throughout the ages have waxed poetic about the nature and value of food. I like what Wendell Berry said: Better than any argument is to rise at dawn and pick dew-wet red berries in a cup. Following our move to […]

Austin makes a strong impression on the newcomer. It’s sunny and warm, the people are warm and friendly, and there are seemingly a million places of interest for the food and beverage lover to consider and discover. Both Zagat and WalletHub rank Austin high on their lists of best cities for foodies. And Easter Austin […]

Boise, Idaho and Walla Walla, Washington are inland agricultural empires that have famously produced potatoes, wheat, onions and other staples of the American diet for generations. Today, the farmers in these areas are increasingly growing viniferous grapes and the impact that this crop is making on the local farm-based cultures is significant. Earlier this month, […]

On Nov. 4, Oregon voters will decide the fate of Measure 92, which would make the state one of the few in the country to require labeling of GMO foods. Opponents of the measure, mainly food manufacturers and chemical companies, have pumped more than $7 million into the No on 92 Coalition effort. If you […]

I think every American can agree that wasteful spending by the federal government needs to be corrected. The problem is we can’t seem to agree on the “wasteful” part. As we have seen, people with radical views on the right want to slash and burn any shred of a safety net for our nation’s most […]

I recently pitched Travel & Leisure on a “three days in Oregon food and beverage experience,” and I can see how that article–and the trip it will require to write it–plays out. But more on that another day. Today, I want to detail a different route into the heart of south central Washington. Mt. Adams, […]

Food waste in America has grown 50% since 1974. Today, the average American household throws out 470 pounds of food every year, making it the largest component in our nation’s landfills. Naturally, this speaks volumes about our culture. Just a few generations removed from war rationing and The Great Depression, Americans waste about 27% of […]

Portland is home to a number of top flight coffee shops–Barista, Albina Press, Spella, Stumptown, Ristretto, Heart and Extracto all contribute mightily to the thriving coffee scene in Portland. But their largess does not extend to the suburbs, and as a resident of West Linn I’m somewhat put out by that. The best place in […]

“Sour beers certainly broaden the flavor spectrum,” Ron Gansberg of Cascade Brewing says, “and they should interest adventurous wine drinkers and beer drinkers both, because the beers are a sort of middle ground.” And he is right. After facing the long lines at Portland’s first annual Fruit Beer Festival, we opted to head over to […]

America is all tapped out. It’s all been discovered, mined and otherwise done. Am I right? Of course not. There are still many special places tucked away, especially in hard to reach corners of the West. Although few places feel as tucked as Wallowa County, Oregon. It is the northeastern most county in the state, […]

I’m starting a new email newsletter for paid subscribers. No, I have not gone mad, I’m merely inspired to pursue various strategies that pay me to write, edit and publish. Why would you want to invite me into your inbox like this? And why would I bother to charge for the content and effort needed […]