Savor the date
September is harvest time for the 15 varieties of luscious dates ($11 for a 2½-pound sampler) that grow at China Ranch, a desert oasis of walking trails, willows, migrating birds, and date palms in California near Death Valley National Park. (877) 503-2837, chinaranch.com .
Move over, maple
Every spring, Dulce and Michael East wade through snow to tap sap from 4,000 birch trees 80 miles north of Anchorage. Their Kahiltna Birchworks birch syrup (eight ounces, $19) has a "deep, spicy sweetness," Dulce says. Find it at the Anchorage Market and Festival through September 13. (800) 380-7457, alaskabirchsyrup.com .Water? It's the hops
Flowery, citrusy, herbal, spicy—a great Willamette pinot gris? Nope, a special ale made at the Deschutes Brewery in Bend, Ore., one day each September, using fresh hop flowers picked near Salem. Visitors enjoy tours and tastings every day and can buy Hop Trip pale ale on tap, in kegs, or in 22-ounce bottles ($5) October through December. (541) 385-8606, deschutesbrewery.com .
Photography courtesy Deschutes Brewery
This article was first published in September 2009. Some facts may have aged gracelessly. Please call ahead to verify information.