Gushed over by the likes of the New York Times and Esquire magazine for its burgeoning wine scene, Walla Walla might just be Washington State’s most buzzed-about destination. Luckily, the town still boasts a historic charm that other wine regions could only dream of.
Come morning, warm up with a Creekside Blend—a mix of Ethiopian, Guatemalan and Indonesian coffee beans—roasted in-house by Walla Walla Roastery. Then choose between admiring the cast bronze sculptures at the Walla Walla Foundry or the thousands of crimson, violet, and golden orchid blooms at Orchidaceae. For culinary enthusiasts, pick up the ingredients for an artisinal picnic menu at Olive Marketplace & Cafe.
For wine lovers, the detailed Walla Walla Valley Wine Alliance map makes self-guided tours a snap. Start with L’Ecole No. 41, built in an old school on a charming estate. Or base yourself at the “airport wineries,” where the Wine Incubator Project hosts fledgling vintners’ barrels in specially built microwineries.
Après tour, line up a reservation at Whitehouse-Crawford Restaurant, set in a turn-of-the-20th-century mill, for fresh-caught trout, hearty grass-fed beef, and sustainably grown local produce—even the crackers are made from scratch.
—Christopher van Tilburg
Photo by Andrea Johnson; courtesy of wallawalla.org.