Taste of San Juan Island – A Culinary Tour of the Isle
Updated February 2019
San Juan Island, with its fertile valleys kept sunny and warm by the Olympic Rain Shadow and its fresh air and clean water, is a culinary paradise. Our busy island farmers, fishermen and foragers tirelessly produce and catch ingredients that our talented island chefs whisk into a Locavore’s dream!
Visit Friday Harbor Seafood, a houseboat selling fresh fish down by the harbor, the Saturday Farmer’s Market or the San Juan Food Coop to get an idea of just how many lovely, unique things are grown, harvested and made here.
We have selected an unforgettable culinary breakfast, lunch and dinner tour of the island for you. Indulge your senses in delicious fares prepared with love by people who care.
Breakfast: Café Demeter
Open Tues-Sat 7:00am-3:00pm, 80 Nichols St
This lovely, little European style cafe offers to-die-for pastries, cream puffs, brioches, fruit tarts, quiches, soups, and sandwiches on rustic breads, using local ingredients whenever possible. Demeter’s hot chocolate is some of the best you will ever have.
You can dine in their cozy, inviting place to enjoy the amazing fresh baked smell and check out local artist’s Paula West Pottery.
Open Tues-Sat 10:00am-3:00pm, 155 Nichols St
Their motto: “Age doesn’t matter, unless you are cheese!”
Enjoy artisan Cheese Boards from San Juan Island, the Pacific Northwest and around the world, quiches, paninis, soups, salads and a lovely glass of local wine on their sunny patio. Or put together a picnic and take your wine and cheeses to the beach, where everything tastes better.
San Juan Island Cheese also has fun, special events like on the occasional Friday evening. Check out their blog for upcoming gatherings.
Weekend Afternoon Fun: San Juan Distillery
Open Sat & Sun 1:00 pm-4:00pm, 12 Anderson Lane
The island’s only Distillery and Cidery on beautiful Westcott Bay in the north, is open for tours on the weekends from 1:00pm to 4:00pm. Their fun and informative spiel is a lovely and tasty past time and just the thing to work up an appetite before dinner.
They distil Apple Brandy, Gin, Vodka, Pommeau, Eau de Vie & Liqueur, with an emphasis on blending unique, seasonal and local flavors and their apple based spirits. Among the seasonals available are Salal, Salish Juniper, Elderberry or Nettle Spy Hop Gin, Blackberry or Madrone flavored Brandy and Lavender & Wild Rose Liqueur.
San Juan Distillery’s spirits are rarely distributed outside of San Juan and in and of themselves make a worthy trip to the island.
Dinner: Duck Soup
Open Tues-Sun 5pm-10:00pm, 50 Duck Soup Lane
This warm country cottage on a pretty pond in the woods serves local, regional, foraged and home grown food. Everything is made from scratch daily. It is the perfect setting for a romantic dinner or a special night out. Duck Soup’s Lemon Balm Daiquiri pairs beautifully with the Wild Nettle Gnocchi and glazed carrots with salmonberry harissa and makes you feel the island’s spirit is pulsing through your veins.