No trip up scenic Mount Baker Highway to play in the snow or hike through the woods is complete without a visit to The North Fork Brewery and Beer Shrine.
That’s because the pub’s beers and pizzas are hard to resist if you’re famished and thirsty after a hard day of playing outside. Heck, it’s worthy of a pilgrimage even if your idea of breaking a sweat is getting into your car and driving to this spot along the highway northeast of Deming.
In keeping with its surroundings, The North Forks looks like a rustic lodge — one with a wall of old beer bottles that is part of owners Sandy and Vicki Savage’s collection of beer memorabilia.
The microbrewery, which opened in December 1997, makes its beers in the style of British ales and its pizzas with a thin crust.
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Customer favorites, at least when it comes to pizza, are the house meat and the Mediterranean. Or try its nod to the Pacific Northwest with the pineapple express, a pizza featuring wild smoked salmon and pineapple.
Or bite into a calzone made of folded dough stuffed with garlic chicken, artichoke heart, mozzarella and ricotta. All of it sitting in a thick marinara sauce.
As for the beer, they’re worth the drive all by themselves. The North Fork says its IPA is a best-seller and its barleywines are popular year-round. But you can order any beer that aligns with your preferences — from a crisp American wheat ale to a deeper, roasty dry stout — and make your taste buds happy.
If you’re young or young at heart (or the designated driver), treat yourself to The North Fork’s house-made root beer. It’s not to be missed.
And each diner gets a fortune cookie at the end. Why? The better question is, why not?