In Praise of Palisade and Colorado Peaches

Peach Syrup at Talon Winery

Ball: One of Many Fruit Stands in Palisade

Main Street Palisade

Pretty Palisade

I’ve been back east in upstate New York most of the summer. Probably the best part of being here is that I’m loving the warm, humid weather. It’s a welcome change from the chilly and rainy days that are so much a part of July and August in Telluride. (The monsoonal flow brings terrific moisture to our arid western climate but boy, can it bring on the blues, especially since it snows well into May in Colorado’s mountain towns and as much as I love the snow, I do require a good, long blast of heat in the summer.)

But what I miss most are the peaches.

Americans love to talk about Georgia peaches. But those in the know, know that Colorado peaches are the best. Sorry, Georgia. But I really am speaking the truth here. I might go so far as to say that our Colorado peaches are even better than those from Provence. Mon dieu!

Heading Out of Grand Junction

View from My Car

On My Way to Palisade

Palisade, Colorado, a charming little town just outside of Grand Junction, is the peach capital of our beautiful Rocky Mountain state. Don’t worry, temps there run about twenty degrees hotter than in our mountain towns and rain is scarce. (Thankfully the smartly irrigated lands off of the Colorado River provide a fertile environment for the growing of peaches, grapes and other delicious fruit.)

Pretty Palisade

So Palisade

I popped into Palisade on a weekday in early June on my way back from some doctoring in Grand Junction. (Yes, that’s life in the mountains; folks from our best known ski resort towns must travel about two and a half hours for tests and treatments, which most people have just a short drive from their home.) So I decided to make it fun and stop by some of the places that give this quaint little town much of its charm. The peaches weren’t in season yet, however, the cherries were plump, luscious and as sweet as candy.

Right now–the latter part of August–is considered the height of peach season and this weekend the Palisade Peach Festival will be in full bloom. Colorado Mountain Winefest goes off here September 14-17.

More Palisade Charm

Palisade’s Food Truck

13 Brix Cider Bistro

Serving It Up at Peach Street Distillers

I’m not particularly interested in attending these festivals–except for the Lavender Festival, which takes place every July–because for me, what I like most is the tranquility and old fashioned ways this unique destination offers.

Yes, I like feeling that life’s a peach when I’m in Palisade. In fact, I think that’s a good philosophy to adopt for life overall.

Yes, indeedy-do. Life’s a peach. Make it juicy and ripe and savor ever last bite. Know that you’ll be especially lucky if it drizzles down your chin, even if it makes a mess in the process.

Wishing you love and many yummy peaches during this late summer season and forever!

I hope you enjoy the photos I took during my June stay. Be sure to visit the establishments highlighted below; I highly recommend all of them.

June Bounty

Old Time-y Palisade Produce Stand

For more on Palisade, read Peachy Keen on Palisade and Perfectly Palisade:  Colorado’s Wine Country.

The Still

It’s a Light

Cool Art at Peach Street Distillers

The Dudes

My Cocktail

Peach St. Distillers
Very much the hip and happening place of Palisade, pop in here for excellent cocktails handcrafted with zest from beach brandy or some of their other spirits. Peach-infused cocktails become the rage by mid summer and peach bombs (a concoction much like a peach daiquiri) go off for about four days during the Palisade Peach Festival. (On second thought, maybe I should make a special trip to the festival during this time in order to taste at least one of their speciality drinks.)

“This town gets crazy in the summer,” says Jessie, one of the cocktail specialists. “There’s lots of festival traffic, especially from people heading here from Denver.”

Talon Winery

The Sweet Life at Talon Winery

Talon Wines & Gifts

Wine–Inspired Gifts Galore

Talon Winery
Fortunately most of the wineries, such as Talon, have AC. Yes, it can be very hot in Palisade, and thankfully here at Talon they pride themselves on some award-winning whites and a delicious rosé called Rosato. I was thrilled to take home a bottle of Talon Wingspan Red, a velvety, full-bodied red that I enjoyed back in Telluride on a cool evening.

Yes Please

A little bit of tasting here sets you up just right for shopping in their boutique. You’ll find Colorado-centric food items and wine-inspired gift items galore!

Serving It Up at St. Kathryn Cellars

Enjoying a Quiet Moment Outside of Talon Winery/St. Kathryn Cellars

St. Kathryn Cellars
Just next door, I couldn’t resist taking a quick sip of one of St. Kathryn Cellars’s fruity blends. This time I chose Sweet Scarlet, a 50/50 merlot/blackberry blend with a delightful taste that I swear lingers in my mouth as I write this. Enjoy this lovely wine chilled with grilled pork in the summer and at room temperature with a hearty roast in the winter.

More great shopping here as well!

For more on Talon Winery and St. Kathryn Cellars, read Be My Wine, Valentine’s Shopping Recommendations, More Lovely Wines for Making Merry, Favorite Reasonably-Priced Wines for the Holidays and Welcoming Fall with a Feast and a Fine Wine

Meadery of the Rockies

Meadery of the Rockies
You’ll be enveloped with a warm and wonderful honey smell as soon as you push open the door to this lovely little establishment. The honey-colored walls further tip you off that here it’s all about honey, the sweet and much-loved gooey liquid made by bees from nectar collected from flowers. So it should come as no surprise that a meadery is a winery that produces wines made from honey.

Bee-autiful

Honey-Themed Shopping

As is the case with most of the Palisade wineries, here, too, you can enjoy a complimentary tasting of five meads. I passed on it, since I was already maxed out (best to bicycle around these parts–perhaps), but I did do a little tour of the behind-the-scenes operation where they also bottle wines for their sister properties, Talon and St. Kathryn Cellars.

Bottling at the Meadery

As with the others, the products in their boutique are well curated, here on the honey theme. But of course.

The Palisade Café 11.0

The Scene at The Palisade Café 11.0

My Lunch

The Palisade Café 11.0
I reveled in a super fresh ahi tuna salad outdoors here in June. It was lovely to take in the warmth and quietude of this peaceful little town. The only noise I heard was the chug, chug, chug of the nearby coal train rolling down the tracks. I doubt it’s like that during the height of the season but no matter, I’m sure there are plenty of places during those busy times to steal a bit of calm. Or, you can just embrace the hustle/bustle and savor an iced coffee along with a scrumptious piece of peach pie.

View from My Drive Home

I’d opt for that right now. But instead, I might have to go for a slice of blueberry, the fruit for which the northeast is best known. One way or another, bon appétit to all!

At the End of the Trip When My Old Beater Subaru Hit a Milestone-Woo-Hoo!

 
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    This blog is a personal blog written and edited by Maribeth Clemente. This blog sometimes accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorship, paid insertions or other forms of compensation. The compensation received may influence the advertising content, topics or posts made in this blog. That content, advertising space or post may not always be identified as paid or sponsored content. The owner of this blog is sometimes compensated to provide opinion on products, services, Web sites and various other topics. Even though the owner of this blog receives compensation for certain posts or advertisements, she always gives her honest opinions, findings, beliefs or experiences on those topics or products. The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely the blogger's own. Any product claim, statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider or party in question. This blog does not contain any content which might present a conflict of interest.
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