Hello all, let me tell you about our idea of a well spent Saturday in the Driftless Area.  Our first “must do” was a walk over to Cafe Ellie to get a cup of latte (a pumpkin spice one for me) made with Kickapoo coffee.  Then we made quick stop at a Little Free Library to drop off a book then a walk up High St. toward the farmers’ market.  At the market, we spent a good couple of hours chatting with friends and even meeting some new ones (Denise and her husband Doug of the Digging in the Driftless blog).  Ollie dog was smothered with hugs and kisses from several little girls.  He also made a couple of new furry friends (Ziggy and Emma).

Market Bounty 

We walked back home and rested for a bit.  Ollie dog was done for the day.  With perfect timing, our friend Jony emailed us and we planned to meet for lunch at Kusaka along with her husband Phil, daughter Haley, and friend John.  We had my favorite pork donburi and a special item, okonomiyaki.  It was a fried potato and vegetable pancake topped with what Chris called “delicious” sauce, bonito flakes, and mayo.  Very intriguing flavor combo.  I’m not sure whether I liked it or not.  I think I need to have it again another time.   That’s one of the things I love about this place, an introduction to new flavors for my pretty experienced palate.  A piece of flower candy was a nice ending.


After lunch we decided to take a drive around.  What a gorgeous day it was, the temperature barely touched the 70’s.  We saw some sheep, a donkey, cows (of course), windmills, creeks and streams, and wild flowers.  At some point, a car stopped to check on me after I took a picture of a creek and I was pleasantly surprise to see my friend Bazile in there!  We also made a stop to see our friend Rebecca of Yellow Barn Farm.


We took a break from driving and ended up at the Global View barn.  It’s an amazing place filled with jewelry, sculptures, and tapestries from Asia.  I found a most elegant Kashmiri wool scarf with gorgeous embroidery.  Marion, the owner, told me that contrary to what most people think, it is the men in the village who do embroidery, not the women.  I cannot wait to wear it for  a special occasion when it gets a bit colder.

A Treasure Trove

After shopping, we drove around a bit more and got hungry.  Pie would make the day even better, I said.  We stopped at Friederick’s in Fennimore.  I got a classic warm cherry pie a la mode and Keith had a montrous piece of coconut cream with a cup of coffee.  We polished off our plates.  A sweet deal at $6.59.

 Good ‘Ol Pie

On our way home, we happened to see a sizeable farm stand, Preston Valley Produce.  We purchased a jar of honeycomb and some eggplant.  I was really excited about getting the local honeycomb because it’s one more thing that I can cross off on the list of 100 Foods to Try Before You Die.  (Yes, I know I’m a food dork and proud of it.)

We got home and saw a large box sitting by our mailbox from Keith’s mom, Donna.  It contained some raw milk cheddar from Leoti Kansas which went into our dinner of grilled cheese and pears.  After dinner, we watched the Top Gear: India Special!

Preston Valley Produce






CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.