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Petting zoos, picking your own produce—such as spring’s sweet berries and summer’s peaches—and winding your way through fall’s corn mazes before choosing a pumpkin can give you a taste of rural life. But if you’re looking for a more immersive event, a farm tour offers a feast for the senses.
The Pacific Northwest is one of the USA’s top ten producers of apples, and the diversity, knowledge, and craftsmanship of its apple crops shines through ciders being produced in the region. No wonder the craft ciders of Washington, Oregon, and Idaho are growing in popularity. The chance to taste ciders is one great reason to visit the area, whether you favor versions made from limited-edition heritage crabapples or the star-dotted Cosmic Crisps bred at Washington State University.
In November 2019, I happened to flip on the TV just as the founders of The Yard Milkshake Bar in Gulf Shores, Alabama, made a pitch on Shark Tank. Ultimately, investor Mark Cuban offered $400,000 towards future franchises in exchange for 22 percent of the profits from the new locations. Today, this sweet business offers customers 34 different ice cream flavors plus 60 different toppings. There are even vegan, lactose- and gluten-free ingredients plus eight versions of edible cookie dough.
The Twin Cities Gateway is one of the Minneapolis-Saint Paul metro area’s best kept secrets. Each of the nine communities that make up Minnesota’s Twin Cities Gateway—Anoka, Blaine, Coon Rapids, Fridley, Ham Lake, Lino Lakes, Mounds View, New Brighton, and Shoreview—has its own unique vibe. They also have something in common: great restaurants.
It could be said that food is our most important love language. “Mother Nature isn’t just a circle of life, it’s a circle of love—and one to be most revered,” says Sylvia Ganier, who works diligently on her organic farm in Nashville, Tennessee. Cultivating food is labor-intensive work with a low monetary yield; it’s ultimately a labor of love.
This Valentine’s Day most of the world’s lovers are planning on staying in, but that doesn’t mean you can’t dream of a tropical island escape. With a little planning ahead, you can even enjoy an exotic tasting tour of the Hawaiian Islands.
Tease and tantalize taste buds with Hawaii’s finest flavors—with enticing options like Oahu-made chocolate, elixirs from Kauai, and wine made of grapes grown on a fiery mountainside—to feel swept away in the sensations of tropical breezes and salty waves even while at home.