Host Rachel Belle holds rainbow pasta with her guest Linda Miller Nicholson

The Nosh with Rachel Belle

The Nosh with Rachel Belle explores the eclectic and delicious culinary scene of the Pacific Northwest through lively and curious storytelling. We examine art, culture, trends and the outdoors, all through the lens of food and drink. Hosted by longtime Seattle journalist Rachel Belle, host of the James Beard Award-nominated podcast Your Last Meal.

Meet the dogs trained to sniff out Washington truffles

Rachel Belle joins Truffle Dog Company to forage for the coveted delicacies in the Snohomish County woods.


Truffles ... those luxurious and elusive fungi, often associated with European cuisine, may seem like a distant delicacy to many. However, nestled among the towering evergreens and damp undergrowth of the Pacific Northwest is a treasure trove of these culinary gems. Truffles thrive in the region’s unique microclimates, the cool, moist conditions providing an ideal habitat for these subterranean fungi to flourish. Species such as the Oregon white truffle and the Oregon black truffle boast distinct flavors and aromas, from earthy and nutty to subtly fruity. 

The fungi find their way into the kitchens of local chefs and food enthusiasts by way of the skilled foragers and truffle-hunting companions who find them. One such group is the Truffle Dog Company, who take folks from all over on truffle-foraging adventures – and you can even hire them to train your dog to become a truffle-hunter all their own! 

In this episode, Rachel Belle spends a day meandering through the mossy woods of Snohomish County with Alana McGee and Aiko Vail of Truffle Dog Co. She learns why truffle-sniffing dogs are the most environmentally sound way to forage; discovers the biological purpose of a truffle’s intoxicating scent; and tastes for herself how these local truffles stack up against European varieties that can fetch thousands of dollars per pound.