Today I thought I would write about vising family who live year round in Chelan, Washington. This small town on the shores of popular Lake Chelan is an itineresting place, particularly in the summer time. From Snohomish, where we live and work, it is about a 3 hour drive east over Stevens Pass (Hwy 2) and the Cascade Mountains to Chelan. We went over to celebrate the 4th, relax on the lake, go for a boat ride, taste some wine, and just unwind.
Chelan has lot to offer visitors: first class accommodations on the lake, recreation in the form of boating, jet ski and kayak rentals, a water slide park, and plenty of wine tasting. It seems like every time we go over there a new winery has opened. Like all wine regions, there are good wineries and not so good wineries, but generally that is a matter of personal opinion. But the point is, you can spend a full weekend doing nothing but visiting wineries and sampling some great food and wine while you are at it. Several wineries serve food - from a formal Italian style buffet, to BBQ, to French bistro fare, and more.
This weekend we visited two really good wineries: Balsamroot Winery and Benson Vineyards. Both are just outside of Manson up in the hills above the lake, and you will need a map to find them, but they are well worth a visit. At Balsamroot, while we were tasting our wines, we were also given two different plates of crakers with cheeses and salsas to go with a particular wine we were tasting at the moment as an exercise in wine and food pairings. This added touch was very nice, in addition to the knowledgeable winery employee, and the good wines. At Benson Vineyards we discovered a family run operation with the winemaker and his family manning the tasting room, talking to the visitors about their wines and the winery, and adding a very personal touch to the experience. The wines were excellent, and if you have ever tried or wanted to try an authentic ice wine (made with late harvest grapes picked AFTER they have been frozen on the vine), this is the place to do it!
The highlights of our 4th of July weekend were the two fireworks shows - one on the 4th at Wapato Point, uplake from Chelan, and then on the 5th the city of Chelan put on their own show, which was spectacular. Nothing beats seats on the lakeshore with the fireworks barge directly in front of you in the middle of the lake!
For more information about what is going on in Chelan, visit www.golakechelan.com.
If Chelan sounds like a place you would like to live or own a vacation home, call me. I would be happy to help you in your search of the perfect get-away condo or house on the lake for you and your family.