On the Kitsap Peninsula, we love good food. Food that starts with fresh premium ingredients and is handcrafted by people who are passionate about what they’re making. Food that has a story behind it and family traditions built around it. From smoked salmon to small-batch roasted nuts to truly decadent chocolates, the region has something for every palate. And that means a trip to the Kitsap Peninsula can make your Christmas shopping and entertaining a whole lot easier.
Crimson Cove Smoked Specialties – Need to fill a gift basket? This Poulsbo store should be your first stop. Northwest native Mark DeSalvo created his signature smoked salmon when he was a Navy pilot stationed in Oklahoma, longing for a taste of home. The wild-caught Alaskan sockeye is brined, then smoked naturally with a blend of alder and apple woods, and is available in vacumn-sealed packs that don’t need refrigeration. Other smoked goodies include cheeses, nuts, oils and sea salts. The store also carries a variety of Washington beers and wines and there’s a smoked salmon spread made with Mt. Townsend Creamery’s Fromage Blanc that could solve all your party menu dilemmas.
CB’s Nuts – If you’re a Mariners fan, you probably already know about CB’s. Maybe you’ve even snapped up a bag of founder Clark Bowen’s peanuts straight from an antique roaster outside Safeco Field. Bowen started with one portable roaster and a love of peanuts, baseball and beer. Using only organic, US-grown, non-GMO nuts, he’s grown his Kingston business far beyond his original goal of earning enough money to pay for Mariners’ tickets. At CB’s tasting room and store, you can sit in a section of the original Mariners’ dugout from the Kingdome, have a beer and sample the wares. CB’s is known for its natural peanut butter, made with ground roasted peanuts and nothing else. Also popular are assorted roasted tree nuts, roasted pumpkin seeds and Theo’s chocolate bars made with CB’s peanut butter. The roasted peanuts are available in refillable buckets.
Mirracole Morsels – People ride the Kingston ferry just to visit this gluten-free granola factory and bakery perched on a hill overlooking the ferry terminal and Appletree Cove. Owner Nicole Haley started selling her homemade almond papaya granola at the Kingston Farmers Market in 2002 to support herself and her two children. She now has more than 10 varieties of chunky granola and has added wholesome trail mixes named for places her family likes to hike. All of her products are chemical-free with ingredients you can pronounce. In recent years, she also gone gluten-free, offering baked goods that draw raves, including breads, muffins, cinnamon rolls, pies, cookies and scones. Many of the products are also free of other potential allergens, such as dairy.
ChocMo, Amy’s Decadent Chocolates, Carter’s Chocolates – Chocoholics, we’ve got you covered! ChocMo in Poulsbo has unique truffles, many infused with beer or spirits, plus barks (the dark chocolate blueberry is to-die-for) and caramels. Try the drinking chocolate mix for an indulgent treat. Amy’s in Bremerton lives up to its name with 22 hand-crafted confections, plus truffles and 16 types of caramel apples, all enormous and covered with a variety of sweets. Her s’mores are the ultimate treat – a homemade square marshmallow between two chocolate-covered graham crackers. Port Orchard’s Carter’s Chocolates are works of art, made from single-origin, organic chocolate. Hearts, flowers and polka dots decorate the tops of Matt Carter’s creations and his nut-filled turtles and frogs are like chocolate sculptures. Take home a jar or two of the whiskey caramel sauce for the ice cream lover on your list.