As usual, any good wine tour eventually comes to an end. So, unfortunately, Monday morning, we got up, and got ready to check out from our home away from home. Jon is outstanding in this capacity, because he will pack up the car with all of our wine and assorted junk while I am showering and doing my hair, as long as I am willing to make room in my suitcase for the things he can no longer fit in his. Don’t ask me why Jon who can’t fit his stuff in his suitcase – it would make much more sense if it were me who couldn’t jam everything in for the return trip. But, it is what it is, so I put his jeans, shirt and sweatshirt in mine and called it good.
We headed out once again in the beautiful blue sunshine that is Eastern Washington, got on the road, and said farewell to Yakima. The Precision Fruit and Antique Stand still wasn’t open. However, we lucked out, because the Thorp Fruit and Antique Stand was open! I’ve been driving by this place on my way back and forth to Eastern Washington for years, and have never been there. So, finally, I can say I have! Of course, keep in mind that they didn’t have much in the way of seasonal fruit, given that it is February, but they do have all sorts of neat local jams, marinades, and sauces. And wine. We saw several that were local, including a few that we hadn’t had a chance to get to. They even had the Piety Flats Black Muscat, which was sold out at the winery, and I had read good reviews about (of course I got a bottle). Jon tried out the Hyatt Winery red blend (he opened it when we got home, and declared it one of his favorites from the weekend). The upstairs is really where it’s at though, for me anyway. Two floors of antique mall booths – I was in heaven. Jon was very patient, letting me browse all the way through, and only occasionally coming to ask how far I had gotten. And in the very first booth, just waiting for me, I spotted a trio of Howard Pierce Quail – the mama and two babies.
For those of you who have never heard of Howard Pierce, which I’m sure is most of you, he was a potter in California from the 1930s until his death in the early 1990s. He and his wife made all sorts of pottery figurines, mostly animals, but also saints and angels, vases, and some other random items like lapel pins. His style is very distinctive, semi-abstract, and very earthy. They used just one ‘not so large’ kiln, and as a result, Howard Pierce was never mass produced. You don’t see Pierce items all that often, but when you do you will recognize them. This is the little quail family that went home with me, and made the end of my weekend!
Our drive back across the pass was uneventful, although there were a few snowflakes coming down (they were not sticking, although Jon swears they were). And of course, once we crossed the County line close to home, it started raining, just to welcome us back. Until next time…