For those who thirst for flavors beyond the typical cocktail concoctions, re-introduce yourself to the elegant, classic and sublime pear. The ideal addition to a short list of sophisticated ingredients, the pear makes for remarkable libations, and allows mixologists to truly exercise their craft.

Hailed as a “gift of the gods” by the Greek poet Homer in The Odyssey, the venerable pear has graced diverse civilizations for more than 4,000 years. Today, the U.S. is the third largest pear producing country in the world, and the pastoral terrains of Oregon and Washington orchards allow this old-world delight to flourish to perfection.

Moisture from meandering rivers and glacial snowmelt feeds the region’s nutrient-rich volcanic soil that creates an environment for pear trees to flourish in. With these idyllic growing conditions, it’s no wonder Pacific Northwest pear growers produce over 80 percent of the nation’s fresh pears—and they’re available almost year-round. A rich history and a richer earth make these USA Pears a tantalizing temptation to the cultivated palate.

The world’s largest website dedicated to pears awaits you. Recipes, ripening tips, nutrition information, entertaining ideas, and more are just a click away. www.usapears.org

Pear Panache