A Visit to Harry and David + The Rogue Valley

Before I start talking about our trip to Harry and David, I wanted to just congratulate Monet on winning the copy of Small Plates + Sweet Treats by Aran Goyoaga in the giveaway I hosted last week!

Twelve hours of traveling (including three flights) made for a very long trip back to Boston.  Despite being exhausted, I couldn’t help but smile when I reflected on the time I spent in Oregon: the tour of Harry and David, our outdoor dinner at Sandy’s house, the meals shared together in Jacksonville and Ashland, the warm welcome and fantastic service provided by Robert and Susan Roos (and their sweet pup, pictured below) at the Magnolia Inn (they make amazing breakfasts, many of which use H&D products). It all made for a wonderful experience.

Harry and David was founded in 1910 and is best known for its mail order Royal Riviera® Pears, which are grown, along with other fruit varietals, at their sixteen orchards in the Rogue Valley.  During their annual harvest, the company will pick 700 tons of fruit a day… all of which is done by highly trained workers.  And H&D treats their employees well (many of whom have been there for 20+ years).  The migrant workers who come for the harvest are not only paid well, but housing and meals are covered.  It also says a lot that many of these workers come back year after year.

What surprised me was how many products H&D produces.  Besides fruit, they also make their own gourmet chocolates, cookies, cakes (the cheesecake is my litte personal piece of heaven), soup mixes and jams, among other things.  Oh, and I can’t forget about Moose Munch.  I couldn’t get enough of that stuff.

On our last day of the trip, we were treated to a little surprise: the announcement of their upcoming line of wines. We were the first group to try them and I have to say that I enjoyed each one.  They should be rolling that out next year, so stay tuned.

I’m going to be quiet now and let you all take in some of these pictures, which covers everything from our dinner at Sandy’s, the Magnolia Inn (where we stayed), the tours of Harry and David orchards and factory, as well as visits to Peerless and Noble Coffee in Ashland.

Other bloggers/writers who attended: 

Magnolia Inn – Medford, OR

Dinner at Sandy and Paul Coughlin’s Home

Harry and David – Medford, OR

Harry and David Staff Pictured: Craig Johnson, CEO (1st photo, right), Matt Borman, Orchard Director (4th photo)

Harry and David Bakery and Candy Kitchen

H&D Staff Pictured: Charlie Douglas, Manager of Research & Development (1st photo, left) and 3rd Generation Candy Maker

Harry and David Packaging Facility

Peerless – Ashland, OR

Noble Coffee – Ashland OR

  Disclaimer: This post is in conjunction with an all-expense paid trip provided by Harry and David.  The views on my blog are my own and in no way was I monetarily compensated for writing this entry.

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  • JamieOctober 15, 2012 - 12:38 am

    What a fun fun delicious trip! I have eaten Harry & David’s chocolate-covered berries – have two bags in my kitchen – and they are extraordinary! What luck to have visited this great company to see how it works. Great pics of a great trip, Brian!ReplyCancel

  • Lori @ RecipeGirlOctober 15, 2012 - 12:44 am

    I’m so glad you enjoyed your trip… sometimes traveling east coast the west coast (or in my case, vice versa) can be exceedingly tiresome! But for Harry & David, well worth it. It’s beautiful country up there in Oregon too, isn’t it?? And H&D is really a great company, all around. Good people.ReplyCancel

  • LirenOctober 15, 2012 - 1:22 am

    Sigh! What a fabulous trip, Brian! Simply lovely, and it sounds like the folks at Harry & David really know how to entertain. I have yet to visit that part of the world, to my sadness, but I do hope to fix that soon. I’m so glad you had a wonderful time, and in such lovely company, too.ReplyCancel

  • Bev @ Bev CooksOctober 15, 2012 - 7:58 am

    OMG, that apple factory reminds me of Laverne and Shirley! Did you put a glove on one apple and wave at it as it passed you by?ReplyCancel

  • shelly (cookies and cups)October 15, 2012 - 8:04 am

    What an amazing trip! Such a long trip home, but glad it was worth it :)ReplyCancel

  • Aimee @ Simple BitesOctober 15, 2012 - 8:05 am

    Looks just amazing! I loved following along on Instagram for the whole event. Welcome home. =)ReplyCancel

  • Ken┃hungry rabbitOctober 15, 2012 - 8:31 am

    Fantastic recap and beautiful photos as always.ReplyCancel

  • BentheOctober 15, 2012 - 8:34 am

    This all looks so overwhelming delicious/pretty :)ReplyCancel

  • […] out these stories: Brian – A Thought for Food If you're new here, you may want to subscribe to my RSS feed. Thanks for visiting! Leave a […]ReplyCancel

  • Sandy @ REOctober 15, 2012 - 8:48 am

    Brian, it was so wonderful having you here in my home town. It was an honor to introduce you to the H&D staff and your beautiful photography and site here. Hugs from Oregon and miss you already!ReplyCancel

  • Sommer@ASpicyPerspectiveOctober 15, 2012 - 9:03 am

    Boy, did we ever have fun!! And I’m SO glad to see those chunky cookies you made me wait on…. ;)ReplyCancel

  • Kay FrishmanOctober 15, 2012 - 9:21 am

    Such beautifully delicious photos…. Even the scenery seems delicious enough to eat!ReplyCancel

  • Andrew FrishmanOctober 15, 2012 - 9:28 am

    Mmmnnnn. . . I LOVES me some pears, especially when they are delicious pears.

    ¡Peras, si!ReplyCancel

  • Julie @ Peanut Butter FingersOctober 15, 2012 - 9:28 am

    brian, i am floored. your photography is absolutely stunning. i will never make fun of you for taking 1.2 million photos again. WELL worth all the time, energy and effort you clearly pour into your amazing talent. can i redo my wedding so you can come photograph it!?!?

    also, i am so grateful our paths crossed during this wonderful trip. your personality added so much and i feel grateful for the time we had together! SO fun!ReplyCancel

  • MikeVFMKOctober 15, 2012 - 9:32 am

    Looks like a wonderful trip and the folks at Harry & David know how to entertain. Great behind the scenes shots too. And what a great group to be with.ReplyCancel

  • Matt mmWine HorbundOctober 15, 2012 - 9:36 am

    It was fantastic to meet you Brian. I’m glad that visiting Oregon and Harry & David brought us together. Your art is amazing, and your ideas are inspiring! You captured the magic of Harry & David’s Medford operations without making it seem so “corporate”!

    Cheers
    MattReplyCancel

  • Kiersten @ Oh My VeggiesOctober 15, 2012 - 10:12 am

    What wonderful photos–it looks like it was an amazing trip!ReplyCancel

  • Brenda @ a farmgirl's dabblesOctober 15, 2012 - 10:15 am

    It was so fun to meet up again, Brian, and get to know you better. I’m still a bit weary from all the travel and FUN, but in the most awesome way. What an absolutely wonderful trip with Harry and David folks and fabulous friends. Awesome recap!ReplyCancel

  • Tina @ MorePleaseRecipesOctober 15, 2012 - 10:25 am

    Wow, your photos are beautiful. I especially love the portrait of the pear orchard. Thank your for sharing your beautiful weekend.ReplyCancel

  • Cassie | Bake Your DayOctober 15, 2012 - 10:29 am

    Gorgeous, gorgeous shots, Brian!ReplyCancel

  • Ann MahOctober 15, 2012 - 11:00 am

    How beautiful! I grew up with Harry and David pears at Christmas, but never realized they came from an actual place, a real orchard in Oregon. No wonder they’re so delicious — they’re grown and picked with care. Thanks for the photo introduction!ReplyCancel

  • MariaOctober 15, 2012 - 11:07 am

    Loved reading your recap! So glad you enjoyed your time in Oregon with Harry and David! They are the best!ReplyCancel

  • Ron HilbinkOctober 15, 2012 - 12:14 pm

    Brian:

    Your photography is amazing. I really appreciated getting a look at where the wonderful pears are grown and processed that arrive each holiday season.

    Thank you for capturing the beauty of the place(s).

    RonReplyCancel

  • Carrie MinnsOctober 15, 2012 - 12:58 pm

    Wow, Brian, what a stunning post! Your pictures are gorgeous. They take me right back. So, thrilled our paths crossed on this trip and we had the opportunity to meet. Your catching enthusiasm added so much to the group. Thank you for that. Cheers, CarrieReplyCancel

  • KristenOctober 15, 2012 - 1:51 pm

    Oh so much fun! Your pictures are so beautiful – makes me feel like I was right back there!ReplyCancel

  • CarolynOctober 15, 2012 - 3:47 pm

    Looks and sounds like a great trip, despite the long travel day on your way home!ReplyCancel

  • VijithaOctober 15, 2012 - 4:49 pm

    What a fabulous trip! I can see that everyone had a great time. You have beautifully captured the moments. Beautiful photos as always.ReplyCancel

  • AggieOctober 15, 2012 - 5:11 pm

    I feel like I just relived the entire 3 days…what a beautiful visual post full of wonderful memories. So glad to finally meet you in person, you are as just as sweet as I’d thought you would be!ReplyCancel

  • Cookin' CanuckOctober 15, 2012 - 8:17 pm

    Dang, you’re good! Your photos captured every aspect of the trip perfectly, Brian. xoReplyCancel

  • JeanetteOctober 15, 2012 - 9:12 pm

    What a fun trip! I’ve enjoyed Harry and David’s Royal Riviera Pears for years (decades actually!) – they continue to be a family favorite. Thanks for sharing all your beautiful photos!ReplyCancel

  • Alison @ Ingredients, Inc.October 15, 2012 - 9:44 pm

    what an amazing post! I am so bummed I had to miss them! I love Harry and David and Sandy! Lucky you! Great work Brian!ReplyCancel

  • MonetOctober 15, 2012 - 10:10 pm

    Oh love, I’m just drooling over these pics. You took me with you! And how exciting that I won that cookbook. Best day! Love and hugs.ReplyCancel

  • JoanneOctober 16, 2012 - 7:39 am

    Wow what an amazing trip! I’d actually never heard of H&D until other bloggers started posting about it…sounds like an amazing company with some great products!ReplyCancel

  • Heidi @foodiecrushOctober 16, 2012 - 11:40 pm

    What a gorgeous pictorial of your visit, it totally takes me back! Love the shot of Matt and the lens flare. And the burger. Ah, the burger. And the endive. And the moose munch. And the…ah hell, you get the picture. I like yours.ReplyCancel

  • Heather | Farmgirl GourmetOctober 17, 2012 - 5:44 pm

    It was great to experience Medford with you Brian. Great post too! I love all of the photos.ReplyCancel

  • Kiran @ KiranTarun.comOctober 17, 2012 - 7:22 pm

    What a fun get-together! It was so nice to get an insight of H&D’s operation. The pears definitely got me hungry :D

    ps: Beautiful photos and definitely captured the essence of that event :)ReplyCancel

  • […] Tour, Lithia Park and Déjà Vu Bistro, Harry and David Gift Baskets A Thought For Food – A Visit to Harry and David + The Rogue Valley Farmgirl Gourmet – Harry & David – A Southern Oregon Experience A Good Time With […]ReplyCancel

  • Brooks│CakewalkerOctober 19, 2012 - 7:11 pm

    My word, how I’d love to spend a day in the Candy Kitchen. I’ve been the recipient of Harry & David gifts over the years, but this up-close and personal look at the business (heck, the entire trip) is exquisitely told in photographs. Brian, you are a rock star behind the camera!ReplyCancel

  • foodwanderingsOctober 19, 2012 - 7:44 pm

    Oh my what a super duper trip to Harry & David Bri. I didn’t know they got their own orchards!ReplyCancel

  • Lisa | With Style and GraceOctober 19, 2012 - 11:00 pm

    What a fun trip and your photos are incredible, as always!!ReplyCancel

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