This week I am heading back to my roots in Sandpoint, Idaho, for what is likely my very last baby-free visit to my hometown. The next time I go up there, I’ll have the Wee Baby Tranchell in tow. So I’m determined to make the most of the trip. That is, to eat at all my favorite restaurants. Because I don’t want to be one of those moms that takes her kids to age-inappropriate restaurants just because she can. That’s why they invented Red Robin, and McDonalds.

But before I go, I want to take an opportunity to let you know about all the really great stuff coming up in the next little while in our Taste section, which as you know comes out every Wednesday.

Next week, Jan. 16, we’ll have a story on the Taste of Heaven Baking Co., in Prosser, and they’re absolutely heavenly sugar cookies.

Then Sara Gettys will join us for another one of her delicious Fresh columns, and the month gets rounded up with the monthly “Valley Fresh Fare” episode, featuring chef Ned at 911 Pasta.

In February, you can look forward to some out-of-season barbecue with Big Papa’s Southern Sauce, a Valentine’s Day feature for all you love-birds out there, and quite possibly a column from me (inspired by husband) in honor of the Daytona 500 on Feb. 24. Because believe it or not, there is more to NASCAR fans than cheap beer and cheetos. (I found it hard to believe, too.)

If you have any ideas for future Taste stories, feel free to email me at, or call 509-577-7552. I’m always up for suggestions and looking for new restaurants and food businesses to write about.