The Chukar Story: Watch the Video
A daughter of the Pacific Northwest, Pam Montgomery was raised in an era of creativity and ingenuity. In the 1980s Microsoft was leading the boom in home computers, Boeing was manufacturing its 1,000th 737 aircraft, and Pam was selling Seattle real estate hand over fist.
But with newborn Vivian in tow and twin girls soon to come, Pam was drawn to the idea of raising her family in a small town. When an 8,000-tree cherry orchard came up for sale in Washington's Yakima Valley, the family sold their business and purchased the orchard.
Pam soon discovered that many cherries went unpicked after harvest. This allowed the natural sugars to build until the fruit dried on the branch.
On impulse one day Pam ate a few of the shriveled cherries. They were chewy, naturally sweet, and delicious. Pam began to glean cherries and fabricated a dryer from window screens.
In 1988 Chukar opened a cherry drying facility and storefront in the small town of Prosser, Washington. Enthusiastic customers fueled growth and in 1992 Chukar launched a second store in Seattle's Pike Place Market. Our third store in the Bavarian village of Leavenworth, WA opened in July of 2012.
Chukar's vision is simple:
- Start with local fruits and the finest ingredients
- Make and ship only fresh goods
- Listen to our customers and coworkers
- …and have fun!
From the malfunction of a new machine that spilled chocolate all over CFO JT Montgomery (christening him JT Wonka) to a daily dose of humor at our stores in Pike Market and Leavenworth, a sense of camaraderie characterizes the Chukar Team. We are multi-ethnic, come from across the USA, and have one thing in common—we love chocolate and cherries!