Culinary CruisIng BY
R E T R
PUGET SOUND IS A PLaCE MADE F O R B o T H B O At E R S a N D F O O D I E S .
We boaters live in the Puget Sound area because of the amazing natural beauty, the ease and proximity of getting out on the water from our homes, and, of course, the awesome local food. In fact, one could probably spend a whole summer cruising Puget Sound one meal at a time, from waterfront restaurants and bars to tucked-away farmers markets, shellfish harvesting grounds, and fire pits
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on the beach. What’s more, many of the marinas now work with local businesses to create fun, and often tasty, events to draw in boaters over the summer weekends. Throughout the Sound, there is a great variation of busy and mellow locations to fit the needs of every boater looking for flavor. As a professional chef and local boater, I share with you some of my favorite places to cruise from the culinary perspective.
South sOUnd A Changing Culinary Landscape Let’s start in South Puget Sound, where Washington’s capitol of Olympia is a great location for a delicious weekend get-away. Marinas line the boardwalk rimming downtown, and the marina run by the city of Olympia adjacent to Anthony’s Homeport restaurant is a great place for weekend moorage. Arrive by boat and stay there for dinner, or walk down to the famous The Oyster House, McMenamins Spar Café, or the Budd Bay Café near Anthony’s---all do a great job with their menus. On my way to the well-stocked Olympia Farmers Market, I often stop at Olympia Coffee Roasters for a delicious coffee and some beans to bring back to the boat. As far as groceries are concerned, the Bayview Thriftway grocery store is conveniently located right next to the Olympia Yacht Club. Olympia is a perfect spot for parking the boat for future adventures. It would be easy to leave the boat at one of the city marinas during the week and travel home for the work week, then head back down, load up the boat, and head out to one of the nearby inlets for another weekend away. Linking trips together this way is a great, practical strategy to explore the incredible Salish Sea. Here’s an example of how I like to spend a weekend in the South Sound. On my way back into Olympia after the work week, I stop off at the Bayview Thriftway for supplies and check out their great wine selection, then go to the Olympia Seafood Company for some local oysters and fish for dinner before heading north toward Harstine Island up Pickering Passage where Hope Island Marine State Park sits off Squaxin Island. There are docks, floats, and buoy moorage to tuck away the boat for the evening. That first night, I grill on the boat or use one of the campsites on shore to enjoy some nice rosé and freshly shucked oysters while grilling fish for dinner. I spend the night at Hope Island and enjoy some of the trails in the morning, then continue up Pickering Passage to the north end of Harstine Island to Jarrell Cove. Jarrell’s Cove Marina has a gas dock and a small seasonal market open between Memorial Day and Labor Day. There are also docks and buoys for the boat, and the bay is big enough to drop anchor. The state park is located across the bay from the marina and has spots for camping, with allowances for clamming and crabbing (but not within the cove itself). There are fire and BBQ pits at the marina and in the park to whip up a meal. It is a lovely, quiet place to hang out. I advise that you call ahead to reserve a campsite or campfire area, then buy extra-large oysters for