MOUNT VERNON, Washington — Heading to the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival?

Here are three spots to grab a bite, drink and something sweet in Mount Vernon:

FORTE CHOCOLATES

This small artisanal brand with a storefront and production kitchen in Mount Vernon has earned international acclaim.

"We are not only the highest awarded chocolatier in America, and we've been for a few years,” said founder Karen Neugebauer. "We're now one of the top ten chocolatiers in the entire world."

The temptations range from bars and truffles to chocolate tulips in a chocolate vase. Each item is made by hand – from tempering and pouring the chocolate to packaging the confections.

"I want them to taste chocolate like they've never tasted before,” Neugebauer said.

Forte Chocolates is located at 700 S. 1st Street and is open daily.

VALLEY SHINE DISTILLERY

The family-owned distillery has been producing spirits since 2010 and opened a tasting room/restaurant in 2016.

"High-quality local spirits, small batch, presented at a fair price,” said owner Ben Lazowski, who operates the business with his wife Stacey. "We do vodka, gin, rum, bourbon, and we do three liqueurs."

For $9, customers can try all seven of their spirits. The menu also features craft cocktails like the show-stopping smoked rosemary bourbon sour.

Valley Shine Distillery is located at 320 S. 1st Street and is open Tuesday – Sunday.

C-SQUARE & THIRD STREET CAFE

These two dining options are located under one roof – and both are extensions of the Skagit Valley Food Co-op.

"Like the Co-op is community owned, this is the only community-owned restaurant for miles and miles,” said Marketing and Outreach Director Nicole Vander Muelen.

C-SQUARE is a specialty counter featuring sandwiches, cheese and meats, and coffee. Third Street Cafe is a sit-down restaurant. Both serve items made in the on-site bakery, creamery, and charcuterie, using organic ingredients from the Co-op.

"It is local and it kind of highlights the beauty of the Skagit Valley which is what the tulip festival is all about,” Vander Muelen said.

C-SQUARE and Third Street Café are located at 309 S. 3rd St. and are open daily.

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