Saturday, January 25, 2014

Girl Blew West Diary: Port Angeles and Olympic National Park

Port Angeles was more of a bustling city after our tranquil time in our cabin in Ashford, but I was so pleased with our Airbnb stay with Lewis. The room was just around $60 a night and we had breakfast basics like English muffins, cereal, coffee, tea, and orange juice to start the day. The room is attached to his house (built by Lewis himself!) and the property is tucked away from busy roads.

I loved the cheery flowers that greeted us. The simple touches make such a difference.
When reviewing dinner choices, Italian sounded very inviting. Bella Italia.

I had no idea they were mentioned in Stephanie Meyer's Twilight book.
I adore vegetarian ravioli, so happened to order what Bella ate on her first date with Edward: the mushroom ravioli with Olympic forest mushrooms. I paired it with a glass of Eve chardonnay wine. Steve had the Dungeness crab, and we realized here this was the area Dungeness crabs come from.
On the dessert special: strawberry panna cotta with strawberries from Graymarsh Farm. I wondered why restaurants in New Jersey don't showcase our wonderful blueberries or peaches and specific local farms when they're in season. New Jersey is named the Garden State, but I think Washington may deserve that name more than we do.
We were lucky enough to be here for the farmers' market. I know I'm supposed to be savoring the delights of winter, but I really miss the bounty of summer and visiting farmers' markets and farms. In the northern New Jersey area where I live, malls are everywhere. When I tried to remember the last time I was in one, I couldn't. Give me a farmers' market or farm any day.

Sharing a coffee, pear tart and champagne raspberries.
Watermelon lemonade.

Some local treats to go: lavender infused chocolate and hazelnuts.

Our magical day at Olympic National Park. As with our Southwest trip, we purchased the annual national parks pass for $80. It's one of my favorite places and causes to support.
I loved this saying inspired by Chief Seattle, "If all the beasts were gone, man would die from a great loneliness of spirit. For whatever happens to the beasts soon happens to man. All things are connected." We couldn't believe in one day we were in the mountains sipping Washington state apple cider, then hiking in a forest climate, and ending the day walking along rocky Rialto Beach, watching the sunset, listening to a woman play soothing Native American flute music. Respect and being awestruck by nature was the tone of the day here.



Since the restaurants were closed by the time our park day was over, the next day we treated ourselves to a leisurely breakfast at Granny's Café. I always love these Americana restaurants. 

Oatmeal with strawberries, toast, and a pot of English tea with lemon. They have kitschy salt and pepper shakers at each. Adore our pigs.

Lincoln Street Coffee Pot. These indie, small coffee and tea spots that dotted Washington state are so much more charming then Dunkin Donuts in New Jersey!

A blackberry scone with an Oregon chai soy latte with lots of cinnamon.
Hiking the Dungeness Spit. The entire hike would have been 11 miles, which we didn't have time for and had unfavorable weather, but enjoyed our magical time here in the eerie, calm landscape.
Dinner at Kokopelli Grill. After a house salad with prickly pear dressing, I savored linguine with Southwestern cream sauce with sundried tomatoes, black beans, mushrooms, spinach and cotija cheese. I love Southwestern cuisine but never think to incorporate it into pasta dishes. Do try this at home.

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