Sunday, August 09, 2009

Do I Dare to Eat a Virginia Peach?

No sooner have I entered the Foster Harris House in Washington, Virginia when I spot it – a deep straw basket delivered by a neighbor, piled high with luscious round orbs, streaked with pink, blush and gold.

It has been just a few hours since I’ve departed the Big Apple, and I am confronted with a mountain of giant peaches. The Southern air is a touch sultry and the peaches simply glow with enticement.

Diane MacPherson invites me into the kitchen, and she brings along the basket. I perch myself on a stool. There are lots of things to catch up on after almost a year’s absence. Chef John MacPherson offers me a glass of wine. Diane slices one of the tempting peaches.

If it is true that one can actually taste the anticipation of a pending holiday, the flavors of the adventures that lie ahead are surely locked in these succulent peaches. The fruit is impossibly bright, ripe and laden with juice. The nectar sweetens my lips and clings to my fingers. All past peaches seem dry, woody and withered by comparison.

We talk for hours about food, wine and plans for the future. Time seems to pass differently in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. And, the taste of these decadent peaches is like an infusion of sunshine.

John scoops servings of his homemade vanilla ice cream and surrounds the velvety rich concoction with more sliced peaches. Does anyone want a shaving of chocolate on top?
Heck, yes!

The cold, silky dessert and the peaches rejuvenate, signaling an awakening of all the senses neglected by just a tad too much responsibility.

It is good to be back at the Foster Harris House.

I visited the food and wine country of Virginia July 23 – 27, 2009.
©2009 T.W. Barritt All Rights Reserved


Kathy said...

Hard to believe a year has already passed since your last visit. Hope you have a great time. Fresh peaches are a definitely a good thing in any form.

Sam Hoffer / My Carolina Kitchen said...

Love peaches and you've sampled them at their best, simply prepared and nothing to take the spotlight but the peaches.

Foodiewife said...

I love staying at B&B's. How fortunate that you found one that makes excellent food! We just picked white peaches from a friend's tree, yesterday. One of the best ways to enjoy them, is just as you did. Peaches and vanilla ice cream! I never thought of shaved decadent!

Christo Gonzales said...

'heck yes' peaches in the raw

La Cuisine d'Helene said...

There is nothing like a fresh peach. This is one of my fav summer treat.

veron said...

Virginia do have some great peaches! Great that you visited the Foster Harris house again, I where else you visited ;).

Lori Lynn said...

Time does fly.
What a neat place, love hearing about it again. We had a dinner party the other night, and served a peach dish for dessert. I am in chicago visit, and asked the produce manager at Whole Foods what fruit to serve. he recommended the Illinois peaches, and they did not disappoint.

Susan from Food Blogga said...

After reading your description, I feel as if I saw, touched, tasted, and smelled those glorious fruits.

Stacey Snacks said...

Virginia is not just for lovers.....they probably have great peaches too!
I have had some lousy Jersey peaches, mealy and tasteless, then they redeem themselves when I find a sweet, perfect smelling peach!
you can find good fruit all over!

zenchef said...

So simple and so good. I love peaches but i've been getting mine from (shhh..) Frog Hollow farm in California. Now i want a taste of virginia peaches.

Great writing as always!