Exploring Orcas Island
Other Orcas Gems
The island’s only creamery, Bill and Jenny Myers can’t keep up with the demand for their fresh, luscious goat cheeses, but they want to keep it small, keeping just eight milking goats, 16 kids and two wethers in Victorian Valley on the island’s west side. Their fresh chèvre is rolled in herbs and featured on menus at The New Leaf Cafe at the Outlook Inn, Lisa Nakamura’s Allium and Doe Bay Café (below). Not to mention the cheese counter at Roses, the island’s largest gourmet deli counter and bread bakery, where savvy locals ask for their Little Cloud, ash tomes and Meyers’ bulk goat feta before it sells out. Not open for visitors. 360.376.3744; Facebook, “Myers Creamery”
New Leaf Cafe at the Outlook Inn
171 Main St., Eastsound; 360.376.2200; outlookinn.com; newleafcafeorcas.com
Kathryn Taylor Chocolates
Award-winning chocolates in a sleek new space in Eastsound, featuring housemade bonbons, drinking chocolates, pastries and coffee. 109 North Beach Road, Eastsound’ 360.376.1030; ktchocolates.com
The Mansion at Rosario Resort
Seattle chef Dan Koommoo and sommelier Regan Vaughn left the Emerald City for the emerald waters of East Sound to revitalize the Grand Dame of Orcas hotel restaurants. 1400 Rosario Road, Eastsound; 360.376.2222; rosarioresort.com
Bullock’s Permaculture Homestead
Sunday potlucks, tours, permaculture classes and beautiful gardens and nursery, with wandering exotic chickens and ducks; open to the public but make arrangements to visit in advance. permacultureportal.com
A 185-acre farm owned by the Coffelt family for 60 years, and recently has become a part of the San Juan County Land Bank to preserve its agricultural setting for sheep (meat and wool), vegetables and orchards. 360.376.3410; coffeltfarm.com
Farmer George Orser grows veggies in his gorgeous garden for many local restaurants, as well as raising sheep and rabbits. 360.376.3276
Up the road, Sara Ross farms 4 acres of produce, and also produces special products, like her delicious and healing nettle, lemon and rose petal tea. 360.376.3663
Savor the San Juans: A Medley of Food, Art & Culture, October 1–13, features The Great Island Grown Festival with dining and lodging specials, farm events, winemaker dinners and more. Learn more at visitsanjuans.com
Note: As part of the cross-pollination she writes about, Orcas resident Shannon Borg has worked for and with several of the farms and restaurants in this story.
How to Get to Orcas Island:
Ferry: Anacortes to Orcas
Departures: Sporadically, starting at 6 a.m. and ending at 11 p.m.
Duration: 50 minutes
Fare: One adult, walk on, $12.45; drive on, $48.30
Tip: If you really need to make a specific ferry in the summertime, arrive two hours early. They fill up! Bring a nice picnic, lunch down on the beach and wander the new wetlands trails nearby.