Monday, April 07, 2008

More daffs than you can shake a stick at

Yesterday my friend Sunshine and I headed down south to Amity for the annual Amity Daffodil Festival. As we had a thoroughly enjoyable time, I highly recommend the trip.

There is a daffodil show, art show, nursery sales, and buffet lunch throughout the day at the Amity Elementary School. There is also a driving tour set up to hit a half dozen or show locations in and around Amity. We ended up hitting various things at random.

After getting the lay of the land, we stopped for brunch at Ashes Cafe. The place looks small, but is much larger than you first think. They had an all-you-can-eat breakfast buffet going on, so after checking to see what was in there, we both went for it. They had this amazingly thick and tasty bacon, delicious sausage, fluffy biscuits, some sausage gravy that was pretty good once you added a tad more pepper to it, scrambled eggs, thick french toast, cinnamon rolls, and breakfast potatoes. Yum yum yum yum yum. I am all about the biscuits and gravy. If there had been hashbrowns, I would've been in redneck heaven. We managed not to go back for seconds (although there was some debate about bacon). Total cost of this tasty brunch with tip was under $25 (and we tipped well).

We were the only people in there not from Amity.

After brunch, we stopped in at an antiques store around the corner that was going out of business. Most of the place was junque, but I picked up a beautiful pair of amber and sterling earrings for $20. Sunshine nabbed a great deal on a long strand of genuine pearls ($15) plus a sterling and amber pendant and chain.

From there we took a short walk around the corner and made the best stop of our trip at Coelho Winery's tasting room. This was worth the whole trip in itself. It's a small family owned winery with their tasting room located in a gorgeous old building (according to their website, built in the 1930s) right off the main drag in Amity. And they're not kidding about being small and family owned. The two manning the tasting bar are the son and daughter of the husband and wife owners. The husband and wife came over and chatted with us for more than an hour, telling us stories of their families, the wines, the history of the labels and the logo (can you spot the bunny?). On top of all of this, they have fabulous wine. I left with a bottle of Pinot Gris and their 2005 Pinot Noir, while Sunshine got their Rose, the 2006 Pinot Noir, and their Portuguese red table wine. I am saving mine for my mom's visit in May.

After a great time at Coelho, we detoured by the elementary school to see the daffodil show. I had no idea there were varieties of daffodils I've never seen before, including a few that don't necessary look like daffodils. (To give you an idea, they do look like excellent subjects for a Georgia O'Keefe painting.) Again, we were just about the only people there who aren't from Amity.

Next was the Brigittine Monastery, or "monkery" as I like to call it. They are the only Brigittine monastery in the United States, and they support themselves by making fudge and truffles. We got to sample the fudge; it was awfully darn good. The recipe comes straight from God, you know. While I like the occasional nibble of fudge, it is often too much for me, particularly if it is a chocolate fudge. My fudgey druthers lean towards the peanut butter variety, which they did not have, so instead I purchased dark chocolate truffles. I am also saving these for mom's visit.

Last, but not least, we visited the alpaca farm Wings & a Prayer. Again, very very friendly people. Mr. Alpaca Farmer Guy (whose name I just learned is Randy) came and chatted with us for a good long while as we admired the alpacas and their three Great Pyrenees, two of whom had recently had puppies sired by the third (he was quite the big stud). They have about 70 alpaca in their own herd, with the rest being boarders (i.e., people who lost to temptation and got their own alpaca after visiting the farm). Luckily, we couldn't fit an alpaca into the car (and the puppies were too young) so we escaped unscathed but knowing an awful lot more about alpacas. I should've broken out the camera for those guys. At least for the puppies.

And throughout it all, the weather cooperated to a reasonable extent with sunshine and blue sky most of the time. Who'd've thunk it in Oregon!

All in all, a great weekend for the CilleyGirl. Hope yours was too!


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