The Fat Duck Inn located in Walla Walla, Washington is a charming and stately bed and breakfast. As you approach the craftsman style B&B for the first time, you might be deceived by its seemingly diminutive stature, but once you enter the “Duck,” as it’s often affectionately referred to by its owner, you soon discover how copiously spacious it actually is. There are five guest rooms, each with its own private bathroom, a large dining area, a cozy common area for guests to enjoy a complimentary glass of wine, a patio, and, as most homes of the era have… a lovely front porch.
The Fat Duck Inn is situated on a beautiful tree-lined street in a quiet neighborhood just a few minutes’ walk from downtown, which offers an abundance of quality restaurants and shopping. One of the evenings during my visit I enjoyed some live outdoor music while devouring a delicious flatbread pizza and washing it down with a cold local beer.
While Walla Walla may have become famous for its sweet onions and as a college town, it’s fast becoming known for its quality soil to grow world class grapes. Ten years ago Walla Walla had some twenty wineries…today there are over two hundred. The Fat Duck Inn has capitalized on this trend by offering gourmet, wine-paired dinners on the weekends for both guests as well as locals. Unfortunately for me, my stay was during the week and I did not get the opportunity to enjoy this dining experience. I did however have a chance to meet the chef, who is not only a fascinating individual, but who also grows a lot of his own ingredients.
One afternoon I headed to the outskirts of town to meet the chef (Greg Schnorr) on his modest farm (Schorgonoff Farms) where not only does he grow a variety of produce, but he also raises hogs, geese and poultry. Chef Greg is a well-versed and interesting person who seems eager to learn about all facets of the culinary chain. He teaches his craft at Walla Walla Community College and continues his own education in farming, wine-making and the harvesting of quality ingredients. I’m either going to have to return to Walla Walla soon, or just continue to imagine the pleasure of enjoying a meal prepared by Chef Greg.
My stay at the Fat Duck Inn was a very comfortable and enjoyable one…my room was quite spacious and included a large bathroom equipped with a Jacuzzi tub and separate shower. And, because I’m often working on my computer, I especially appreciated the butler/secretary-style desk. Each of the five guest rooms is distinctly decorated and each has its own “duck” name, i.e. The Pintail (the suite I stayed in), the Widgeon, the Gadwall, etc.
Alexa, the owner of the “Duck,” is quite vivacious and hospitable, while at the same time giving guests space to enjoy their stay—she lives off-site, but just a block away, so guests can call with any needs they might have. In addition to running the Fat Duck Inn, Alexa also manages a number of vacation rental properties in the area for guests needing more spacious or private accommodations.
During my stay, Alexa graciously invited me out for drinks and appetizers at one of her favorite places, JimGermanBar, in the neighboring town of Waitsburg. It’s always nice to have a local show ya around—and, it’s fun getting to know the proprietor of the place you’re staying to find out how they got started, what sets them apart, etc. My first question of Alexa was an obvious one… “where does your fascination with ‘ducks’ come from?” As she chuckled, she said, “I really don’t have one…it was just an idea I had to create a memorable image for the Inn.” Clearly Alexa has some experience in marketing! While the Inn has an abundance of duck-themed décor, it’s all very tastefully done.
Breakfast at the Inn is served buffet style and consists of fresh fruit, granola, baked goods and a warm entrée such as a breakfast burrito. The menu does not seem to vary from day-to-day. An afternoon glass of wine is offered and is quite enjoyable on the front porch of the Inn.
Click the following link to see more of my pictures of the Fat Duck Inn. If you’ve stayed at this B&B before, please leave a comment for my readers and me. If you’ve enjoyed reading this post and watching the video, please click the “Like” button below.
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Note: After creating, then building-up and running the Fat Duck Inn into a profitable business, Alexa has decided to sell the Bed and Breakfast. So, if you’re looking for a charming B&B in a wonderful area, you can contact Alexa below with any questions.