Culinary Gems at Oroville’s Farmers’ Market

Farmers Market, Oroville, Great Food

by James Gutschmidt

Some things are just great, unsurpassed. Like: homemade apple pie, a freshly mowed dandelion patch, (see pic), a man and his dog, and a great burger. I’m not talking about something run of the mill, here. I’m talking a great masterpiece.

I’m talking about Tina’s Burgers at the Farmers Market, Saturdays, in Oroville. There is no fanfare involved with these burgers. Place your order. Wait for Tina to custom barbeque it. A little mayo, a little ketchup, barbeque sauce, that’s out of this world, on a glazed bun, and, Voila, the best burger I’ve had in 50 years.

Oh, and did I tell you, the meat is from her own Irish Dexter, grass fed beef raised here in the great Okanogan? Butchered ground and certified, it’s the quality ingredients that make it right; worth traveling for.

“Masterpiece” That’s the term used by Greg Palmer to describe the “Cheese Deluxe” hamburgers that were fashioned at the Samoa Drive-In on Mercer Island 50 years ago.

Being spoiled in my youth, I remember well those burgers on Mercer Island. Quality goods made it good. And, I have waited 50 years till now, for the like.

If you were wondering, and like to read, I would recommend Greg Palmer’s Memoir “Cheese Deluxe.” It’s an interesting anecdote of the Samoa Drive-In, from 50 years ago, and a sometimes humorous account of upscale, 1960’s youthful characters, and their escapades. It’s remembered from the perspective of a pubescent, but mildly intellectual, short order cook. He’s changed the names, but I know them all well, because I was there. The chapter on the Golden Horseshoe is especially entertaining. And, the Samoa Burgers were a complete “masterpiece,” as described in chapter one. It’s reminiscent of small town life, before condos and tower cranes, kinda like Oroville.

By the way, don’t forget to take in the other exhibits at the Oroville Farmer’s Market. If you were wondering, Tina is the assistant cook at Oroville Senior Center, lunches served Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.

Noteworthy farmers at the Oroville Farmers’ Market, Saturdays.

The German Sausages melt in your mouth. Jim Weaver and Ken Zimmerlee
The German Sausages melt in your mouth. Jim Weaver and Ken Zimmerlee
Is that Dennis Peterson on the ukulele? Randy Battle Bluz Band
Is that Dennis Peterson on the ukulele? Randy Battle Bluz Band

Highland Beauty
Fresh Mow

Nothing is more beautiful than a freshly mowed dandelion patch in the Okanogan Highlands, 12 miles east of Oroville. The picture is taken from our dining room window, looking west. Great place to be.

Article by James Gutschmidt on special loan to North Okanogan – an Online Magazine. All rights reserved by international copyright laws.

P.S. For the editor. I thoroughly enjoyed the music, and your harmonica, at the Farmers Market. Great sound.

James Gutschmidt shares a poetic view of the High Okanogan

Story and images provided by
James Gutschmidt

Today, Saturday the 28th, I now understand why Mary Lou and I live where we do. From up here at 4000 feet, we see the distant clouds that lay like a lake 2000 feet above the Oroville valley below. The white capped Cascades, in a neat row, float above westward to northward, to where the arctic winds blow. The foreground valley is blanketed in a quilt of various shades of brown and white snow. The sun languishes, then sets in the west, sooo slow. The sky hangs, a clear sky blue, with a yellowish golden horizontal hew. All is still … the air is sooo cool. We may not be rich, but my God, what a view! Whew!

The vista described above can be viewed, minus the snow and cloud cover, in the archives of water color artist Jim Weaver at the following website: Jim Weaver – Paintings Sold and in Collections under the title “A Thousand Hills.”

“A Thousand Hills” – Watercolor by Jim Weaver
James and Mary Lou
James and Mary Lou

What is it like to retire to the Okanogan?

We get a lot of questions from outside the area about housing, quality of life, outdoors activities and such so we thought we’d start with housing. Here is a not uncommon example home that a retiring couple might consider. Move-in ready, beautiful surroundings with lake view, features for him and her, and in our opinion, an affordability index that does not exist in the East King County commute zone. The information shown below is a current page from Zillow and truly speaks for itself.

We keep saying our Okanogan is the most beautiful place you’ve never heard of and it is, so if you’d like a piece of it here’s an example of what your next home can offer.

Zillow listings

Disclaimer: We have no monetary relationship with Zillow or the sellers. Our objective is to promote this beautiful area.