Eight Washington products won Good Food Awards this year, representing three times our state’s fair share of the list. There’s no question that Washington is home to some pretty impressive eats, but these represent the best of the best: They were narrowed down from a massive number of nominations based on the criteria of ethical production, authentic ingredients, and good taste.
Here are this year’s Washington winners, which were crowned at a ceremony featuring the likes of Alice Waters and Ruth Reichl. As for the rest of the winners? The lineup can be found online, and let’s just say that next time we travel outside of the Emerald State, we’re taking it as a to-do list.
Finnriver Farm and Cidery Black Currant Cider
This Port Townsend farm has long been at the forefront of Washington’s burgeoning cider industry. This cider is mildly sweet, blushing with deep violet currant juice and begging for cheese pairings.
Available at: Whole Foods, PCC Natural Market, Central Market, and other independent beer and wine shops.
Island Trollers Original Troll-Caught Albacore
Sashimi-grade canned tuna isn’t as much of an oxymoron as you thought. This Whidbey Island fishery raw-packs its sustainably-trolled catch with just a hint of salt. Pro tip, don’t drain it after opening. That’s not your typical packing oil, that’s the natural tuna juice that renders during the cooking process.
Available at: Made in Washington stores.
Jacobs Creamery Bloomy
Most of the cheeses at this Chehalis farm recall owner Lisa Jacobs’ Dublin roots—they’re hard, deeply aged, and loud with tang (oh, and delicious). But the real star is the brie-like Bloomy, which grows softer as it ripens, its dense, chèvre-like middle giving way to a melty exterior over time.
Available at: PCC Natural Market.
Kuma Coffee Panama Carmen Estate
The direct trade coffees that roastmaster Mark Barany has been turning out since 2007 are consistently outstanding, but this blend of cherry, caramel, and citrus notes stood above the rest. Unfortunately, everyone else realized it too, and the entire batch has already sold out.
Available at: Well, nowhere. Kuma's other coffees, including a similar Panama Carmen Honey, can be found at Whole Foods, Central Market, and coffee shops like Neptune, Trabant, and Milstead and Company.
Ballard Bee Company Dark Cream Honey
This urban apiary started as a way to increase pollination rates within Seattle, and the extraordinarily tasty honey all those bees produced was really just a perk. The dark version of their cream honey is like honey dialed up to 11, smoky-sweet and faintly earthy.
Available at: Specialty stores like DeLaurenti, Pasta & Co., and Sugarpill, and restaurants like Boat Street Café, Delancey, and Parfait.
Honey Ridge Farms Clover Creamed Honey and Balsamic Honey Vinegar
Yep, two of this year's wins came from this beekeeping family in tiny Brush Prairie, Washington. Their clover creamed honey is rich, smooth, and dense with floral flavor, and the oak-aged balsamic honey vinegar is tart, yet balanced.
Available at: Made in Washington and the Honey Ridge Farms website.
Olykraut Smoke and Kale
Summer Bock and Sash Sunday's line of lacto-fermented sauerkrauts and kimchis is made by hand from locally-sourced organic cabbage. This winter seasonal flavor is studded with carrots and leafy greens and laced with jalapeño for a hint of lingering heat.
Available at: Eat Local, Madison Market, Marx Foods, and PCC Natural Market.
Johnson Berry Farm Tayberry Jam
What the hell is a tayberry, you ask? It's a cross between a Scottish raspberry and an aurora blackberry, and it tastes like it. The resulting jam from this Olymia farm is the best of both berries: sweet and tart, it tastes like the Pacific Northwest in a spoonful.
Available at: Pike Place Market