Event is SOLD OUT*

  • By Beth Kuchynka
  • 21 May, 2017

Cynthia Nims        *please let us know if we can hold any signed books for you

 local Seattle author of OYSTERS and CRAB, Cynthia Nims
Join us for a special evening with local Seattle author Cynthia Nims. We've loved her books for years - especially her latest. This evening will feature demonstrations, tastings, personal stories and of course book signing. We'll be featuring both book subjects - OYSTERS and CRAB. This is a limited seating event.  We'll have books on hand for sale - please let us know how many of each we can hold for you. Feel free to bring any of her other books for signing.  $20 Please register here . Read more about Cynthia here

By Beth Kuchynka 14 Jun, 2017
Join us as we welcome Erik Cooper from Nefarious Cellars for this month's FREE Thirsty Thursday for wine club members. 
We'll be tasting 6 wines from 5-7. Not in the club yet? Feel free to join us and pay only $10 to taste. Sign up and we'll waive the fee - read more here. 
Thirty Thursdays are a fun, social, casual wine tasting. First come, first served. We'll have a nosh of food for purchase too. Don't miss out - these wines are terrific. 

Nefarious Cellars story...

The tale of this winery mirrors that of this young and growing wine region and is equal parts love story, passion for wine, and defiance.

The wife and husband team of Heather and Dean Neff began their foray into the world of winemaking in 1998 by planting a one-acre test block on a piece of family land 20 miles north of Chelan. Planting a vineyard in the area was, at the time, an audacious thing to do. While the area had a hundred year history of growing tree fruit and people had intermittently grown wine grapes, no one was yet producing grapes commercially in the area at the time. In fact, many believed it was too cold.

Heather Neff says of their decision to plant a vineyard and start a winery, “It was the whole thought that winemaking was romantic, that sort of life that you imagine in your head.” It was this life that the Neffs set out to find.

The couple’s experimental vineyard confirmed two things. The first was that growing grapes in the area was possible; the second was that learning to make wine would require more training. “We decided if we were going to put our life savings on the line, we had to get a lot of hands-on experience,” Dean says.

So they packed up their belongings and traveled to Oregon’s famous Willamette Valley where they spent the next two and a half years learning the tools of the trade. By the time they were lured back to Chelan, eager to start their winery, a fledgling wine industry had already begun to take root in the area.

The Neffs planted two vineyards near their original test block north of Chelan in 2004. Rocky Mother (“It is!” Heather declares of the name) is planted to Syrah while nearby Stone’s Throw is planted to Riesling. They also purchased land on the outskirts of Chelan for another estate vineyard and as a home for their winery. They planted this site to Syrah, Malbec and Viognier, naming it Defiance Vineyard because, after all, it was still questionable how wine grapes, or a winery for that matter, would fare at Lake Chelan.

On a romantic overture, the couple opened their tasting room on Valentine’s Day in 2006.

At Nefarious, the Neffs take a unique approach to making their wines. Heather makes the white wines; Dean makes the reds.

“It seemed like a logical thing,” Heather explains. “We could either divide up the varieties or we could make it really simple.” While for some this division of labor might prove difficult, the Neffs have thrived.

~Washington Tasting Room 
By Beth Kuchynka 14 Jun, 2017

Order one of our signature sandwiches crafted on a fresh baked ciabatta. Or, if you want to truly experience all that our cheese case has to offer a sampling of cheese, meat, and antipasto on a large or small picnic plate is the perfect option.

Pair your food with wine by the glass or bottle, an ice-cold craft beer or FinnRiver cider, or one of our hip and trendy non-alcoholic beverages. Dine in our nicely stocked wine room or out on the patio overlooking the waters of Penn Cove…or have us pack up your choices to enjoy at home or at one of the many scenic vistas on our beautiful island.      

By Beth Kuchynka 14 Jun, 2017

We love to assist with all of your gift giving needs! Peruse our distinct collection of cookbooks, kitchen and table accessories, Riedel wine glasses and decanters, and more.

 Choose from our collection of fine French Garnier-Thiebaut linens, browse swatch samples and special order your own. Shop our bi-annual trunk shows!

 Stop in or call ahead for one of our featured gift baskets , build your own, or have our creative staff help you assemble the perfect combination for your favorite foodie, client, family member, or friend. Can’t decide? Give a gift certificate in any amount. 

We specialize in corporate gift giving! And, yes! We ship!

By Beth Kuchynka 14 Jun, 2017

Our well-appointed cheese case is filled with an exceptional variety of domestic and imported cow, goat, and sheep cheeses as well as delectable charcuterie including cured meats and pâtés from artisan local producers and traditional European houses. Questions? Ask for a taste! Need a bite for yourself or a platter for a party? We can cut as little or much as you need.  We offer catering , custom meat and cheese plates, and wine by the bottle or case for your next event.


Accentuate your selections with an assortment of antipasto including olives, cornichon, tapenade, Mama Lil’s peppers, to name a few.


Our knowledgeable staff will be glad to assist you in finding just the right complement to your meal, wine pairing, or party. And, don’t forget the crackers!

By Beth Kuchynka 14 Jun, 2017

We pride ourselves in our worldwide search for distinctive, ethically and sustainably produced, superior quality goods from small producers. We explore food shows, specialty markets, and even word-of-mouth recommendations to find the latest and greatest for you, such as RITROVO SELECTIONS™ extra virgin olive oils, Michel Cluizel chocolate chocolates, Nueske’s meats, Matiz figs, Billecart-Salmon Champagne, and Chad Stock’s Minimus wines.

 Sign up online or in the store to attend one of our monthly food or wine tastings and learn more about our latest finds. Join one of our four wine clubs to taste exclusive selections from a range of regions.  

 Stay tuned here to be the first to know about the hottest new items to hit the shelves at bayleaf!


By Beth Kuchynka 14 Jun, 2017

Fill your pantry and your belly with epicurean delights ranging from specialty groceries and ready-to-eat snacks to bayleaf signature foods and local goods. Our shelves are stocked with  top-shelf candies and chocolates, crackers and pastas, and sauces and condiments, as well as wine, port, champagne, beer, and cider to complement your dinner, recipe, or nosh.


We offer many gluten free and organic options as well as Whidbey Island treats such as smoked Penn Cove mussels, Oystercatcher and Turner & Bea’s crackers, Screamin’ Banshee Bread, Whidbey Island Winery wines, locally produced honey and jams, and our world-famous, house-baked Salty Blonds.


Can’t find it on the shelf? Let one of our friendly staff know, and we will search to the ends of the earth to try and find it for you!    


By Beth Kuchynka 10 Jun, 2017

A rosé by any other name…is NOT sweet!

The collection of splendid rosé  wines at bayleaf are anything but your Aunt Bea’s blush or Granny Winnie’s white zinfandel. All are crisp, dry, fresh, fruity, floral, and delicious – of course!  

Fresher is better.   Unlike deep, rich reds, rosé wines are best when they are new – less than a year or two old. And, because they are not as costly to produce, they are one of the more budget friendly members of the wine family. At bayleaf, we have an impressive assortment of loveliness – most priced from $10 to $15. Come see for yourself, and buy a bottle (or a few) or have a glass (or two) while you sit on the patio and watch the sailboats navigate the blue waters of Penn Cove.      

Real men drink pink… and think pink – from the barest blush to the deepest fuchsia. The grapes used for rosés can range from Malbec and Pinot Noir to Sangiovese and Syrah. Indeed, nearly any dark-skinned grape from nearly anywhere in the world can be used to make a rosé. Each varietal imparts its own distinct aromas and flavors, but the tones and shades of these blushing beauties are a result of pigmentation from the grape skins. A mere hour or two of exposure will produce a light, refreshing wine. Increasing the time will deepen the hue and intensify the flavors and tannins.

Summer in a bottle. Inarguably, chilled rosés are best when paired with seasonal favorites like grilled meats, seafood, and farm fresh vegetables or simply sipped during the long days and balmy nights of summer. However, at bayleaf we believe rosés should be enjoyed all year long. Treat yourself to endless summer (and reap the myriad benefits of wine club membership) – for only $29 a month - by joining rose club today!  Tell them Susan sent you!  

~ Susan Wenzel 
By Beth Kuchynka 08 Jun, 2017
Sorry this event is sold out. If you would like to purchase a sample plate from the tasting we will have them for sale Thursday - the 22nd. Please let us know if we can set one aside for you. 

In 1955 two shepherds, Alessandro and Remo, began making cheese in Acciaiolo, very close to where the current Formaggi Busti plant is now located. Today, Stefano Busti, heir to this family tradition, manages the dairy with his son and daughter. Located in the heart of Tuscany, the Busti family is bound by tradition and respect for the art of cheese making, and we are very excited to bring a well-rounded selection of Busti’s fine cheeses to Whidbey Island.

Join us as we welcome Paolo Campigli of Busti for an evening of Pecornio. We'll share stories, explain how we bring these cheeses to your table and of course TASTE! Please come early if you would like to purchase wine/beer with your cheese pairing.

From Caseificio Busti, Paolo Campigli

Paolo is the Export Manager for Caseificio Busti and assists with introducing the Busti collection outside of Italy. Paolo lives in Fuecchio, a small town near Florence and commutes to Pisa (Fauglia) when he needs to get “to the office”. His background includes study as a sommelier and has worked in Argentina within the wine industry. Paolo worked along side Gabriele to help select the introductory collection of cheeses being imported to the Pacific Northwest.


From Peterson, Gabrielle Antongiovanni

Gabriele Antongiovanni the Italian Product Specialist at Peterson and works closely with suppliers to source foods of exceptional quality that are imported directly from Italy or produced in the US with respect for traditional Italian techniques. With his lifelong love of great food, Gabriele is a wonderful resource of information and training about Italian food production methods, cultural significance and regional variations, preparation of classic dishes, and ideas for use in modern cuisine. 

By Beth Kuchynka 21 May, 2017
Join us for a special evening with local Seattle author Cynthia Nims. We've loved her books for years - especially her latest. This evening will feature demonstrations, tastings, personal stories and of course book signing. We'll be featuring both book subjects - OYSTERS and CRAB. This is a limited seating event.  We'll have books on hand for sale - please let us know how many of each we can hold for you. Feel free to bring any of her other books for signing.  $20 Please register here . Read more about Cynthia here

By Beth Kuchynka 14 May, 2017

Join us as we welcome back Jesse Huffstater of Indie Wines as we explore the topic that's been in the news as of late. We've been showing you wines that are delicious and nutritious for years - fret not. 

Saturday May 27th 5pm
$15 wine club members // $20 non-club members

Have you ever thought about where your wine comes, how it's made and (most importantly) what goes into it? If you have, this event is great for you! If you haven't, this event is perfect for you!! We will explore organics, biodynamics, natural yeast, sulfur and additives in wine (what?? They put other stuff besides grapes in wine??) We will taste through some of Indie Wineries selections as well as a few mystery wines for contrast. Bring your questions, your concerns and an open mind.

Please register here

Tasting includes 6 wines both reds and whites and a nosh of food. Please refrain from wearing anything scented. We love the opportunity to learn and share that knowledge with you! Hoping you'll have fun, learn a little and take home some new found wine loves. 

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