Portland Fermentation Festival 2017 Redux

October 31st, 2017

Nat West and Sarah West of Reverend Nat’s Hard Cider. Nat ALWAYS brings something interesting and experimental to the fest. So fun. This year he brought some of his ciderkin to sample. Ciderkin is made by using the traditional cidermaking technique of re-wetting the spent pomace (what Nat is holding) after the first pressing of juice is extracted from the apple. It was a bright yummy and appley sample that most festival-goers had never tried before. Thank you Nat and Sarah for always bringing your fun and wild energy and ferments!

Thank you so very much to everyone — there were hundreds of you! — who came out last week for our EIGHTH annual Portland Fermentation Festival at Ecotrust! We had 100-plus tasty funky fermented foods and drinks to sample, smarty-pants exhibitors and attendees, all sorts of fun DIY demo’s, rooftop good vibes thanks to my fine fellow DJ Jimbo (I’ll post his 2017 playlist once he puts it up), Reverend Nat’s Hard Cider and Cinder BBQ.

Thank you all for coming out for it and joining the stink! And thank you to our newest recruit who joined us as a co-organizer this year — festival friend and participant since day one Heidi Nestler of Wanpaku Natto. Heidi kicked-ass and you could feel her awesome months-long event organizing effort in many ways throughout the festival. Heidi really helped us focus on more diversity on the exhibitor floor. She got a lot of new folks to sample their yummy ferments this year and we are so grateful.

We put the Portland Fermentation Festival together every year with a shoestring budget + heaps of volunteered hours (thank you sooooo much to all of our kick-ass volunteers!) and as always we’re so grateful that Ecotrust puts up with us year after year. Thank you again Ecotrust! We love you.

We had some great coverage this year including this segment on KGW News with Christine Pitawanich and this Portland Monthly story by my friend and one of my all-time favorite editors Kelly Clarke. We’re very excited that Japan’s Elle Magazine was in attendance to cover the fest. I will shout that feature out from the rooftops once it prints. We’ve posted most of the other coverage on social media. If you’d like to keep up with local fermenty goings-on please check out our festival Facebook and Twitter pages.

Below are a whole bunch of photos from this year’s Stinkfest! If you have some great ones too please post them to the Facebook page or Twitter or Instagram them with the hashtag #portlandfermentationfestival.

Thank you, thank you, thank you and see you all again next year we hope! Stay stinky! Oh, and please let me know if I attributed anything incorrectly. Thanks!

Festival founders — the Dapper Foodists! Marty snapped this one of us a few minutes before we opened the doors. Left to right — David Barber, me and George Winborn. Year after stinky year. XO

People were lined up and chaming at the bit to get in. As always.

And once the doors opened it filled up quickly with hungry folks ready for fun and all sorts of special food and drink ferments.

Maria Llull brought her delicious fermented whole grain mustard.

Maria’s fermented mustard!

It makes me really happy that Gabe Rosen of Biwa /Noraneko comes to the festival every year. This year he made one of my favorite festival bites — freshly fried potato chips tossed in dehydrated powdered house kimchi and served with a sour cream dip blended with dehydrated flaked and powdered house sour pickles. Chip and dip dream come true!!

So fun having Thubten Comerford bring his sweet energy and super tasty fermented sour pickles, corn relish and sauerkraut to this year’s festival. They were all so good and it was really nice to have so many new, vibrant folks sampling this year. We were aiming for more non-commercial fermentation enthusiasts and we got it with Thubten and others. Love this pic.

Thubten’s tasty trio of ferments.

I am the lucky one who gets to organize the ticketing table volunteers annually and it makes me really happy to have my strong female friends volunteering as the fest welcoming committee in five shifts of two. Here are my friends Phoenix and Kelli at the lobby ticketing table’s first shift before the doors opened. XOXO

One of the first two demo’s of the night was the packed fermented nut cheese fondue with my friend Claudia Lucero pictured here. Claudia is working on a step-by-step vegan cheese book at the moment and I can’t wait to get my hands on it when it publishes!

I got to try some of the vegan nut cheese fondue and it was sooooo good. Everything Claudia makes is delicious.

Festival co-organizer Heidi Nestler was doing a fermented natto demo (her biz is Wanpaku Natto) at the same time across the mezzanine. I really love that we have all of these tasty demo’s every year. Inspiring and empowering.

My youngest in the best friends realm — almost 11-year-old Kylie (my Michelle’s daughter). She loooooves the Portland Fermentation Festival. Her favorite tastes this year were Heidi’s natto and a couple of the kombuchas.

Me and Kylie before the doors opened.

And if you were wondering what those cute pink things are that we are wearing they are festival SCOBY (the host of bacteria and yeast that you use to make kombucha) pins that fest volunteers and dear friends Loly, Phoenix and Kelli dreamed up and made. So cute.

This year’s festival poster that the talented artist Tim Root designed for us — as he does every year. Headless Horseman!!

Lovely Amelie Rosseau brought her pinot noir and homemade fermented hot sauce to the festival. Thank you Amelie! So happy that you came and sampled this year.

Susan Laarman of Swarm Portland brought her tasty fermented honey! She has a few accounts in Portland but please check out her website swarmportland.org for more info. about what she does.

Close-up of Susan’s yummy fermented honey.

Photographer Shino Yanagawa (on the left) of Japan’s Elle Gourmet Magazine came and shot photos of the fest this year! Can’t wait to see them when the story publishes!

Photographer Joshua Eddings (check him out on Instagram at skyturtlestories) took this great shot on the rooftop this year. It always amazes me that we never get a rainy festival despite the fact its always in September/October. It’s always beautiful. We had ciders from Reverend Nat Cider up there, barbecue by Cinder BBQ and…

Music by DJ Jimbo. Every year my sweetie Jimbo makes us a festival playlist that cycles good vibes on the roof. Once he posts the playlist online I’ll share it on our festival social media.

Me and George taking a quick and sweet rooftop breather. We found out he can emcee from the roof and everyone can still hear him in the main hall of the festival a floor below. Hilarious. Photo by Loly.

Us earlier in the day hunting and gathering for the festival. AND getting a little sweet pick-me-up from Nuvrei which we both adore.

Festival favorite Sash Sunday of OlyKraut! We look forward to seeing Sash (she lives in Olympia) and tasting all of her awesome ferments year after year.

Really yummy fermented breads spread from Tabor Bread at SE 50th and Hawthorne. We LOVE Tabor Bread…

And John from Tabor serving them up.

Careen Stoll is another tried and true festival friend. Every year she brings her beautiful hand thrown porcelain crocks that you can purchase at various galleries and shops around town.

Careen and one of our favorite festival veteran volunteers — Marty Dooley.

SOMA brought all sorts of tasty kombuchas this year. Love that they had kombucha taps to serve from.

This was a really, really yummy fest sample — Cultured Manifestation’s Yummus. Hummus made with fermented garlic, lime kefir whey, cumin, sumac and more.

Made by these two! Val Pena and Paul Castoral of Cultured Manifestations.

We loved having Madi Kay of Imperfect Produce at the festival this year to talk with attendees all about the good work that the company does. Please check them out at imperfectproduce.com if you haven’t already. Inspiring.

KGW’s Christine Pitawanich came and did a live segment in the main tasting hall at 7pm and we had fun showing her different ferments and taking her around. You can check out the segment at the link in my post above.

We first took her to the Choi’s Kimchi table with Matt and Chong Choi and Elmo. Choi’s is my very favorite kimchi. Matt and his mom come to the fest every year. We love them.

We also took them by Fumiko and Jason’s Obon PDX table. Fumiko was sampling their delicious tofu misozuke.

We tried to make it to the Jorinji Miso table with all of these fine folks including Earnest and Yuri Migaki but they were too popular and their table was too crowded. Earnest and Yuri are my dear friends and I love them and their miso so much! If you haven’t tried it before get some! Photo by Loly Leblanc.

A close up of their misos. They made all sorts of tasty miso treats throughout the night including white miso granola, roasted miso chicken and miso dressing, tonjiri with red miso, pork and winter vegetables plus miso soup. YUM!

Heidi Nestler at her Wanpaku Natto table — natto sampling (navy bean natto with mustard and natto kimchi) and educating.

Heidi’s felted SCOBY looks A LOT like her new Wanpaku Natto logo. Cute!

Another festival friend year after year — Colin Franger of Blue Bus Cultured Foods with all of his tasty treats.

Tina Johnson giving her super informative demo all about fermenting and curing olives.

Tina’s cute sign.

Anja Spence and Bill Jones of Miss Zumstein’s Bakery and Coffee Shop sampled their bright and delicious house fermented hot sauces. So yummy!!

John Westdahl of Squirrel & Crow Tempeh serving up his fried chickepea and sunflower seed tempeh along with his split green pea tempeh aka tempea ;

Festival ticketing volunteers Loly and Kelli (thank you also to Jess, Jemma, Phoenix, Michele K, Michelle G and Stacy!!) enjoying the festival fun.

Brian Shaw of Oregon Brineworks serving up the wild and beautiful array of super tasty ferments that he and Connie always bring to the festival. I helped at his table a bit under the guise of “helping” — really I just wanted to be closer to all of those yummy samples 😉

And a sweet goodbye from all of the fine folks at SakeOne in Forest Grove who came out and poured all sorts of lovely sakes. They sent me home with a bottle of their pear sake. Happy.

And, as always, the final festival shot goes to George Winborn — co-founder/co-organizer extraordinaire. The final fest pic is usually of him wearing the shoulder strapped vacuum pack but I guess Ecotrust finally got rid of that vacuum so now no vacuum pack. Still so cute 😉

Thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone who came out this year for our EIGHTH annual Portland Fermentation Festival. This year felt really special. I think we all needed to get together and have some good old fashioned stinky fun. I know I did. Thank you and see you next year. Happy fermenting!

Eighth Annual Portland Fermentation Festival — TICKETS ON SALE!

September 29th, 2017

2017’s Headless Horseman festival poster is by the incredible Mr. Tim Root — as always. The poster is downloadable over at our festival website if you want to have it and/or share it.

The Portland Fermentation Festival aka Stinkfest is less than a month away! I’m pasting the press release that I just sent out here below. Please have a gander and save the date! Want to participate as an exhibitor or do a demo this year?! Info. on how to do so below.


Eighth Annual Portland Fermentation Festival
Thursday, October 26th 6-9:30pm
Ecotrust’s Billy Frank Jr. Conference Center
Rooftop food and drink sales and music
721 NW 9th Ave. Portland, OR
All ages, open to the public, $10 advance, $12 cash at door
Children 12 and younger attend for free
Tickets on sale!

We are now less than a month away from the EIGHTH annual Portland Fermentation Festival! Please join us on the evening of Thursday, October 26th at Ecotrust for Portland’s annual, open-to-the-public, all-ages celebration of fermented food and drink lovingly referred to as Stinkfest. Bring kimchi, try kimchi. Bring miso, try miso. Come out for Portland’s fermented food and drink skill sharing, recipe sharing and tasting event of the year. Taste and share live, fermented food and drinks made by professionals and home fermentation enthusiasts at the annual event that brought out more than 400 attendees in 2016.

Talk to fellow fermenters, exchange cultures and recipes, get advice from local food fermentation enthusiasts, attend fermentation demo’s and sample everything from sour pickles, miso and natto, to cheeses, hard cider and kombucha.

2017 highlights:

Nat West of Reverend Nat’s Hard Cider will be making and sampling Hawaiian okolehao at this year’s festival! For festivals past Nat has made chicha, kumiss, Angel of Death (LAMB-steeped cider!) and other gutsy ferments. We always really, really look forward to the wild (in more ways than one) ferments that Nat experiments with and brings to the festival. Love it.

Imperfect Produce recently launched in Portland and they’ll be joining the Stinkfest festivities this year in order to talk up what they’re doing, hand out some of their Imperfect Produce and give fest attendees recipes to ferment their produce with.

Some of the fermented treats already on the roster to be sampled in the main festival hall from amateur and professional fermenters include Korean makgeolli, fermented mustards and ketchups, adaptogenic herbal kimchi, Wanpaku Natto from Heidi Nestler, Soma Kombucha and Elixirs, Eva’s Herbucha, Squirrel and Crow Tempeh, Claudia Lucero of Urban Cheesecraft’s vegan fermented cheeses and much, much more.

On the beautiful Ecotrust rooftop (with its lovely open hearth to cozy up to and pretty strung lights) we’ll have food and drink for sale. Reverend Nat’s Hard Cider will be pouring delicious hard cider and Cinder BBQ (at Bushwhacker Cider every Thursday) will serve tasty sandwiches. DJ Jimbo will make his annual pickled playlist for the fest so you can sip on cider, eat a ‘cue sandwich and listen to sweet and salty Jimbo tunes under the stars. We have surprisingly *never* had a rainy Portland Fermentation Festival. Strange but true.

Festival demo’s will take place throughout the night. Please check our social media closer to the date for details.

Admission for the 6pm or 7:30pm Thursday festival tastings and fermentation demos is $10.

Online tickets are on sale! A limited number of tickets will be available at the door the night of the festival and will be $12/cash only.

If you or your business has a ferment that you’d like to sample and/or demo at this year’s festival please visit our website for info. on how to apply to be a part.

Festival coverage:


Photos from last year’s festival Food Lover’s Guide to Portland

Cooking Up a Story

KBOO Food Show

Portland Monthly

Willamette Week

Portland Mercury


Facebook Portland Fermentation Festival
Twitter @PDXFermentFest
Website www.portlandfermentationfestival.com

Grow Your Own Book Launch Party at Holocene Wednesday, September 27

September 21st, 2017

Party time! Less than a week away!

In 2015 and 2016 I got to write two books and edit one. It was a wild (and very busy) ride that allowed me to have one book launch party in July — True Portland: The Unofficial Guide for Creative People, another launch party in August — Hello! My Name is Tasty and a third launch party in September — next week’s Grow Your Own: Understanding, Cultivating, and Enjoying Cannabis!

We have put together one of the most ambitious and awesome book launch parties for Grow Your Own and I really, really hope that you can come. The party is next Wednesday, September 27th at Holocene from 6-10pm and it is free, open-to-the-public and 21+. There will be no cannabis on site as per OLCC rules but there will be all kinds of cannabis experts, growers, appreciators ++ on hand for an evening of green appreciation and education and last but not least CELEBRATION!

My fine fellow DJ Jimbo will be spinning music all-night long, I’ll be emceeing on the upper stage throughout the night, the super smart and on-the-scene Ravens from Raven Grass — coauthors of Grow Your Own — will be tabling, talking and whooping it up in general and the fine folks of Tin House Books who brought this book to life will be the hosts with the most.

Did I mention that Bill Murray will be in the photobooth? Yep. You’ll see what I mean. Did I mention that there will be a giant blow-up of the book’s cover and rad Tin House interns snapping instant photos of party attendees with it? Yep. There will also be a special Grow Your Own cocktail of the night that I helped conjure up, all sorts of treats to try, herbs to sniff (as a part of the cannabis terpenes informational display), cannabis crafts to make (thanks to Make & Mary), and much, much more.

Below I’m including descriptions of all of the talks that will be taking place throughout the night on the upper stage by rad, super smart women in cannabis from throughout the Pacific Northwest. Curious about sex and cannabis, particularly how it affects women? We’ve got you covered. Have a question regarding growing or consuming cannabis that you’ve been wanting to ask? Stop by the 9:30pm Q&A with Nichole Graf and Lena Davidson.

I’m also including a linked list of all of the awesome businesses and organizations tabling at the event’s Cannabis Community Fair in the main dance area of Holocene.

Please mark your calendars and help us to spread the word! This is the fist event of its kind in Portland — a noncommercial, free, learn from the experts, cannabis education and appreciation event. Portland is lucky to get it and I’m lucky to be a part. I’m particularly excited about all of the women in cannabis talks and the terpene station. Thank you Holocene, thank you Tin House, thank you Ravens and thank YOU for reading this and coming out for our Grow Your Own launch party spectacular next Wednesday night!



Hilary Brown will be on hand to demo the Magic Shell recipe from Grow Your Own and talk through her recommendations for flavor pairings with cannabis, based on her experience as a world renown chocolatier. Plus, get ready to sample all of Botanica’s delicious (non-cannabis infused) treats!

Broccoli Magazine
Get a sneak peek of this new to-launch women-in-cannabis quarterly from Anja Charbonneau the creator of Kinfolk.

Van der Pop

Check out samples of all of Van der Pop’s beautiful offerings with April Pride.

Phylos Bioscience
Get hands-on experience with the Phylos Galaxy model and learn how to track the strains you purchase from your favorite growers.

Hands-on Terpene Station from Pearl Extracts ++
A hands-on terpene station sponsored by Pearl Extracts and led by Grow Your Own author Micah Sherman — Learn about these aromatic cannabis compounds by interacting with them in person. Gain confidence in selecting strains based on terpene profiles, which can help you predict how different strains will interact with your body much more accurately than the old standbys of indica vs. sativa and THC potency.

Hana Medicinals
Learn from Amy Risch all about the health and healing side of cannabis particularly its use in combating chronic pain in topicals.


7:00PM — ANDI BIXEL, Creator of Drip Ice Cream
Cannabis as Medicine for Our Culture
Let’s talk about the ways that normalizing cannabis can make big waves for our culture. Andi will explore the importance of properly introducing the plant to newbies and how we can play with and understand our experience of cannabis.

7:30PM — CAROLYN WHITE, Marketing Manager of Phylos Bioscience
Staying True: Building a Values-Based Brand in the Cannabis Industry
Carolyn will talk about the Phylos Bioscience model, science, and dreams for the industry. Get ready for a deep dive into the Phylos Galaxy and learn about the organization’s ambitious goal of mapping the cannabis genome.

8:00PM — MARY J POPPINS, Founder & CEO of Sativa Science Club
The Importance of Education and Advocacy in the Cannabis Industry
Mary will discuss the need for foundational science education for all those involved in the cannabis industry—professionals and consumers alike. She’ll also dive into why she founded Sativa Science Club and how to empower cannabis users through education.

8:30PM — EMMA CHASEN, Director of Education at Farma & Cannabis Educator at Sativa Science Club
Counter Culture: Re-framing Your Relationship with Cannabis in a Dispensary Environment
The wonderful world of legal cannabis can be overwhelming to the novice consumer. That’s why we have budtenders to guide our dispensary experiences. But what happens when the budtenders are ill informed? How can we as consumers ask the right questions? Emma Chasen, recently named Portland’s Best Budtender of 2016, will share helpful tips to make sure you get the most out of your dispensary experience.

9:00 PM — APRIL PRIDE, Founder of Van der Pop
Hot Box: Women’s Sexual Health in the Age of Legal Cannabis
April, founder of cannabis lifestyle brand Van der Pop, will share all she’s learned on how cannabis inspires sexual freedom in relationships and sexual satisfaction while alone. With only one approved medication dedicated to women’s sexual health (as compared to 26 for men), cannabis promises to close the gap.

9:30PM — NICHOLE GRAF, co-author of Grow Your Own and Creative Director of Raven Grass & LENA DAVIDSON, Director of Community Outreach at Botanica Seattle
Ask Us Anything (About Cannabis)
Join Nichole and Lena for a frank conversation about cannabis as a movement, our power as professionals and consumers, and the importance of Growing Your Own now more than ever. They’ll also be answering the questions you’ve dropped in the “Ask Us Anything” box over the course of the night.

See you next Wednesday at Holocene! #growyourownbook

Eighth Annual Portland Fermentation Festival 2017

September 14th, 2017

Portland Fermentation Festival attendee 2016, “I can’t get the sound of the wailing, howling pickles out of my head! Never again. Those poor pickles.”

Online tickets are on sale now for $10! A limited number of tickets will be available at the door the night of the festival and will be $12/cash only.

Well, the days are getting shorter, the nights are getting cooler AND the pickles are getting longer. Wait, what?! The date for the EIGHTH Annual Portland Fermentation Festival at Ecotrust (as always — we love Ecotrust!) has been set and we’re happy to let you know that it can serve to jump start your Halloween weekend yet again this year on Thursday, October 26th from 6-9:30pm.

Below are all the details from the press release that we have set so far for this year’s stinky good time!


Organizers & Media Contacts:

Liz Crain
lizcrain at gmail dot com

George Winborn
gw dot winborn at gmail dot com

David Barber
briney at picklopolis dot com

Heidi Nestler
heidi dot nestler at gmail dot com

Eighth Annual Portland Fermentation Festival
Thursday, October 26th 6-9:30pm
Ecotrust’s Billy Frank Jr. Conference Center
Rooftop food and drink sales and music curated by DJ Jimbo
721 NW 9th Ave. Portland, OR
All ages, open to the public, $10 advance, $12 cash at door
Children 12 and younger attend for free

Tickets on sale!

Please join us on the evening of Thursday, October 26th at Ecotrust for Portland’s annual, open-to-the-public, all-ages celebration of fermented food and drink. Bring kimchi, try kimchi. Bring miso, try miso. Come out for Portland’s fermented food and drink skill sharing, recipe sharing and tasting event of the year.

Come celebrate pickling season at the eight annual Portland Fermentation Festival at Ecotrust. Taste and share live, fermented foods and drinks made by professionals and home fermentation enthusiasts at the annual festival that brought out more than 400 attendees in 2016. Talk to fellow fermenters, exchange cultures and recipes, get advice from local food fermentation enthusiasts, attend fermentation demo’s and sample everything from sour pickles, miso and natto, to cheeses, hard cider and kombucha. We *just* learned that Nat West of Reverend Nat’s Hard Cider is making okolehao for the festival this year! Nat always tries his hand at something awesome and experimental year after year for the festival. Check out the chicha he made for last year’s festival!

Admission for the 6pm or 7:30pm Thursday tastings and fermentation demos is $10. Enjoy rooftop music by DJ Jimbo, food and drink from Reverend Nat’s Hard Cider, Bingo Sandwiches and others TBD.

Festival coverage past and present:


Photos from last year’s festival Food Lover’s Guide to Portland

Cooking Up a Story

KBOO Food Show

Portland Monthly

Willamette Week

Portland Mercury


Twitter: @PDXFermentFest
Facebook: Portland Fermentation Festival

Kibbe’s Tomato Pie

July 12th, 2017

Kibbe’s Tomato Pie that I made at home. YUM!!

Nearly two years ago when we set off into researching, writing and recipe testing Hello! My Name is Tasty: Global Diner Favorites from Portland’s Tasty Restaurants (out August 15th!!) we went on a 10-day Southeastern states road-trip from DC down to Savannah to gather inspiration for the book and get back to chef John Gorham’s roots.

Along the way we had plenty of adventures and met all sorts of sweethearts including Kibbe (whose full name is McKibben Dover Nixon) on Halloween of 2015 at Newgrass Brewing in Shelby, North Carolina. Kibbe has spent all her life in Shelby and at the show she was dressed up as a cat and her son’s friend, who she was with, was dressed up as the Big Bad Wolf from Little Red Riding Hood, just after the Wolf had eaten Grandma.

It was a super fun night and we talked a bunch about food and cooking and Kibbe told me all about her famous tomato pie. She’s been making different versions of this yummy pie for the past 16 years and when we parted ways I asked her how I could get the recipe. She said to email her when I got home and she wrote her email address on the back of a Newgrass coaster. I, of course, ended up writing to her and she ever so sweetly and generously sent me her tomato pie recipe so I’m sharing my tested and edited version of it with you all here.

It’s tomato time in Portland and if you’re at all like me you are going to be eating as many summer tomatoes as humanly possible before the days get short again and those tomato plants get yanked out of the soil. Kibbe uses whatever ground meat she has on hand but typically it will be one part ground meat and one part ground sausage meat. Kibbe also often ups the cheese/mayo mix when she wants to cover the pie entirely with it. If you want to do that just double the cheese and mayo mix below.


Kibbe’s son’s friend.

Kibbe’s Tomato Pie

2 pre-made pie shells
1 tablespoon safflower oil
1 pound ground turkey meat (dark meat if possible)
1 pound ground spicy Italian pork sausage
1 tablespoon butter
1 yellow onion, chopped
2 cups grated cheddar cheese
½ cup mayonnaise
2 large tomatoes, cut into ¼ inch slices
2-3 tablespoons of dried or fresh Italian seasonings (we recommend 2 tablespoons of fresh oregano and 2 teaspoons fresh thyme)
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and remove pie shells from the freezer.

2. Once the oven is preheated and the pie shells are defrosted fork the bottoms of each shell (poking the tines in to them so that you slightly puncture the shell) several times each and bake them for 8 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.

3. Put the safflower oil into a large pan over medium-high heat and add the ground turkey meat and ground spicy Italian pork sausage and brown the meat, breaking it up and stirring it occasionally as you do so, for 8-10 minutes.

4. Strain the meat from the pan and set aside.

5. Discard any fat from the browned meat and then add the butter to the pan and set the burner to medium heat. Add the chopped onion to the pan and sauté it, stirring it frequently, for 5-8 minutes until it is translucent.

6. In a medium bowl stir together the grated cheddar and mayonnaise into a stiff mix.

7. Evenly distribute the sauteed onions onto the bottom of each pie crust, evenly distribute the browned ground meat next and top the ground meat with a layer of sliced tomatoes.

NOTE: The sausage, cheese and mayonnaise all contain a lot of salt and most sausage has a good deal of pepper as well. That’s why we haven’t included any salt and pepper in the recipe. You probably won’t want to add any but give the browned meat a taste and season it if you think the pies will benefit.

8. Sprinkle whatever dried or fresh Italian spices you are using on top of the tomatoes and then evenly distribute heaping spoonfuls of the cheese mayo mix over the tomatoes.

9. Bake the pies in the preheated oven for about 30 minutes and broil them for the last 1-2 minutes so that the cheese slightly browns.

10. Remove the pies from the oven, let them rest for 3-5 minutes, slice and serve. And as Kibbe says, “Take care and eat more maters!”

True Portland 2017 Book Launch Party

June 27th, 2017

Left to right: Rhonda Hughes, Teruo Kurosaki, Liz Crain. Right before the party started. Kanpai!

Wow. What a party. Thank you so much to everyone who came out for our Hawthorne Books + Media Surf/Bridge Lab + Reverent Nat’s Hard Cider True Portland: The Unofficial Guide for Creative People book launch party last Thursday night. 500+ people came out and raised their glasses (filled with Nat’s delicious Magnificent 7 made with seven Japanese apple varieties from Kiyokawa Family Orchards, Culmination Brewing’s dry-hopped yuzu sour +++) with us including Teruo Kurosaki and his Japan posse, all of whom crossed the great Pacific from Tokyo to Portland for the party.

Sure, we got some great coverage for the party including this and this but mostly I think we can attribute the awesome attendance to the combined sparkling, lovely, wild and creative greatness of everyone who participated including our super talented food/drink/wares vendors (all in the photos and linked up below), Reverend Nat’s Hard Cider’s Mr. Nat West and event coordinator Carolyn Winkler +++, the 400+ wise ones and businesses featured in the book and, of course, Hawthorne Books’ Rhonda Hughes and moi. I have been lucky to be an editor and publicity director at Hawthorne Books since 2009.

My boyfriend DJ Jimbo played so many sweet summery tunes for us including one of my favorites (and Lola’s of Umi Organic) Strawberry Letter 23 written by Shuggie Otis and largely popularized by this The Brothers Johnson rendition of it. Hawthorne Books interns Stephen Hyde and Melina Hughes were hosts with the most at the Hawthorne Books table. (I stacked the books like a mountain pre-party and by the end the mountain was just about gone!) And the Travel Portland folks (hugely supportive of all editions of True Portland) came out and brought a lot of fun including their sasquatch-like Dude-head Japan mascot. You’ll see.

I managed to snap a bunch of photos throughout the night and many of them are below. You can also check the hashtag #trueportland on social media to see more. Oh, and, if you want to get a copy of the book head to your favorite independent bookseller and purchase it. Some businesses that we love who are carrying it include Powell’s Books, Broadway Books, Monograph Bookwerks and Tender Loving Empire. It’s easy to find now that it has launched. Thank you again to all of you and to Portland for celebrating True Portland with us. One of my favorite parties yet in all of my 40 years. So fun.

Here are links to all of the lovely vendors who took place in our party’s Japan marketplace: Biwa/Noraneko/Parasol, Marukin Ramen, Yume Confections, Jorinji Miso, Kiriko Made, Wanpaku Natto, Seisuke Knife, Obon PDX and Umi Organic.

Mount Fuji-sized stack of True Portland!

Katsu Tanaka and Oleya of Kiriko Made. Their fabrics are incredibly beautiful. Can’t wait to get some.

Partyyyyyy! Really fun to have it in the heart of the cidery amongst all of the fermentation tanks.

Seisuke Knife. Check out their shop. So many beautifully crafted Japanese knives. They regularly host Japanese bladesmith’s at their Northeast Portland shop.

Chef Mayumi Hijikata of Marukin Ramen serving up their DELICIOUS cold ramen. So lovely on such a hot summer day/night.

Rev. Nat’s event coordinator superstar Carolyn Winkler with Randy Kiyokawa of Kiyokawa Family Orchards in Parkdale. Seven Japanese varieties of his apples comprise Nat’s super tasty Magnificent 7 hard cider along with sake yeast that was poured at the event and is available in Japan.

The lovely Gena Renaud of Yume Confections. Her wagashi are so beautiful you almost don’t want to eat them. You can get them at the Portland Japanese Garden’s Umami Cafe and watch her make them on the Portland Bizarre Foods episode +++

Not a great photo of Gena’s gorgeous entirely edible “koi aquariums” http://www.yumeconfections.com/

Party lovelies! Left to right: Sarah Hart, Dory Athey, Rhonda Hughes, Alisha Gorder.

We were all so lucky to get to sip on the rare (most of it has shipped to Japan) Rev. Nat Magnificent 7 cider. Link to it is above. Sooooo yummy and special.

The hugely talented and dedicated folks at Stumptown Printers (featured in the book) made us these (out of the goodness of their hearts) beautiful commemorative cards for the event. Everyone who bought a book got one of these — three color, entirely analog, 100% recycled paper board, 2-color offset litho using hand-cut rubylith and 1-color letterpress linotype.

My fine fellow DJ Jimbo made the night so fun with all of his great vinyl. He mixed in several rad Japanese songs that our friend Takeshi gave him just for the party.

Yuri Migaki (left) and Lola Milholland of Jorinji Miso and Umi Organic. They partnered up (no photos of Earnest sadly!) and served up really tasty noodle + miso dishes.

Jorinji’s classic and delicious hiyashi chuka made with their miso, Lola’s Umi Organic ramen noodles and summer veggies.

And Lola’s super tasty Umi Organic ramen noodles with Jorinji’s Goma Miso Sauce and crisp fresh veg. So good.

Jeff Hammerly of Travel Portland putting on their Japan mascot dudehead. I love Travel Portland.

Jeff Hammerly all Duded up.

My friend Heidi Nestler of Wanpaku Natto and…

Heidi’s super yummy natto. I don’t love natto but I do love hers. It’s much milder and more balanced in flavor than most. I went back for seconds 😉

Hawthorne Books interns Stephen Hyde and Melina Hughes slinging books. Cheers to these two and True Portland!


Gabe Rosen and Ian of Biwa/Noraneko/Parasol. Their onigiri was awesome!

Me and Etsuyo Okajima — my Tokyo friend and one of the editors of the Japanese editions of True Portland. Happy.

Etsuyo and Joy Church — executive director of The Portland Kitchen. If you don’t know of the great work that TPK does with underserved youth and the culinary arts check them out.

The Rev. Nat Beers Made By Walking CIDER that launched that night. Wood shavings in the tea bag for flavor.

My dear friends George Winborn of Metro and Michelle Gilmore of SMART.

Fumiko Hozumi and Jason Duffany of Obon PDX. I had never had their food before and it was so yummy! Will definitely be checking them out and you should too — obonpdx.com.

The cidery’s awesome taplist for the party. My favorite cidery on the planet.

Sarah Hart, Rhonda Hughes, me and Dory Athey. Good times were had.

I got my chance with the Travel Portland Japan mascot Dudehead.

And the closing shot goes to the True Portland super talented book designer Shinpei Onishi. Traveling all the way from Tokyo to Portland will do this to you 😉

Thank you again to everyone who came out and celebrated the first English edition of True Portland with us. So fun. XOXOXOXOXO

Cooking the Toro Bravo Book Party Pt. 6

March 31st, 2017

The only problem with this photo is that Sarah Taft who took it isn’t in it and neither is Sarah Ryan-Knox because she left before we took it. Well, a lot of folks aren’t in the photo who’ve participated in our cook the Toro Bravo book dinner parties throughout the years but it’s hard to get everyone together. So fun.

The time has come for us to literally and figuratively close the book on our cooking the Toro Bravo cookbook parties. Over the years, since the book came out from McSweeney’s in the fall of 2013, we’ve had six big and raucous dinner parties at the homes of a very special group of hungry, good cook friends where we all cooked different dishes from the book. You can check them out here, here, here, and here. I didn’t post the fifth dinner from fall 2015 and I’ll do that soon too.

We looked through the Toro book’s table of contents at the end of our grand finale Toro book dinner party last weekend, and it turns out that we cooked about 85% of the book. None of us are completists in life, so we feel pretty dang good about cooking all of those awesome recipes and not cooking every single recipe.

The biggest holes were in the Charcuterie and Cocktails chapters and meat dishes throughout the book. The first because those recipes take a good amount of time and special equipment (although our group tackled the Coppa Steak twice, the Pork Rillettes, and the Sherry Chicken Liver Mousse), the second because that’s a lot of cocktails for six dinner parties (we made the Toro Martini, Venus 75, Jerez Negroni, Casa Rita and White Sangria), and the meat dishes because we have a few vegetarians and pescatarians amongst us (we made the Harira Lamb and Lentil Stew, Coppa Steak, Drunken Pork, Moorish Meatballs and Chicken and Clams Cataplana). I might have left a few out of those lists but that’s most of them.

So, we ate, drank and were quite merry, as always, and I’m posting a bunch of the photos here for you. We’ll probably do one more Toro party, that’s not strictly recipes but that includes the Paella and Rabbit Fideos, this summer because that sounds like a lot of fun. After that, we’re going to do a one night only James Beard cook from the book night — everyone will choose a dish from whatever cookbook of his they’d like.

After that I’m really hoping that the group chooses Hello! My Name is Tasty: Global Diner Favorites from Portland’s Tasty Restaurants, which comes out August 15th, as its next cook from the book cookbook. More than a little biased. I love that we can have brunch and dinner parties with that one.

If you want to watch a fun video that Rebecca and Fred Gerendasy of Cooking up a Story did of our dinner party series you can check it out here. Love that they captured it.

Alright, without further ado, photos from the night.

Toro Bravo: Stories. Recipes. No Bull. dinner party menu

Toro’s White Sangria made with my Concord grape wine
Boquerones with Toasted Bread and Piperade
Bacon-Wrapped Dates
Octopus a la Plancha
Sauteed Spinach with Pine Nuts and Golden Raisins
Butter Lettuce Salad
Harissa-Stewed Butternut Squash
Coppa Steak with Salbitxada
Panna Cotta two ways
*We also had really yummy Olympia Provisions ham, pork rillettes, chorizo and sopressata that Josh and Sarah brought. Josh is Olympia Provisions’ plant manager.

We started off the night with Toro’s White Sangria that I made with my homemade Concord grape wine. It was really citrusy and yummy with sliced oranges and kiwi. Tastes like summer.

Next up we had my Boquerones with Toasted Bread and Piperade. I made these for our first Toro cookbook dinner at Loly and Faulkner’s so it was fun to make them again at their place for the final one. This is one of my favorite recipes from the book. So simple and delicious.

A little closer…

Josh’s Olympia Provisions spread. It wasn’t from the Toro book obviously but it was a super tasty addition. Pork rillettes, manchego, soppressata, ham, chorizo +++.

Tom working hard on his Bacon-Wrapped Dates 😉 And I love that I captured Alec in the mirror.

Most of Alec’s Toro Tapenade on charred bread got snapped up before I got a photo. Love the Toro Tapenade!!

Loly with one of Tom’s yummmmmy Bacon-Wrapped Dates.

Faulkner and Loly cooking up there Octopus a la Plancha. We are the luckiest. I ate two of these and had a hard time stopping myself from eating more. There was so much more food to come.

Loly with the finished dish.

Dana cooking up another one of my favorites — Toro’s Sauteed Spinach with Pine Nuts and Golden Raisins. If you love spinach I HIGHLY recommend making this dish at home.

My niece’s first grade class is doing the Flat Stanley project right now so she sent me her Stanley from Cincinnati and I brought him with. He had a few too many of the Toro sangrias and not enough food to start so we let him doze on the Toro book for a bit.

Chris who was the ringleader for most of these dinners made the Coppa Steak again. It was awesome! Perfectly smoked, tender and juicy. Alec made the Salbitxada to top it with.

Dana and Oliver made the Harissa-Stewed Butternut Squash. Mmmmm.

Loly and Faulkner’s tasty Butter Lettuce Salad. Nice to have some fresh crisp greens in the middle of the feast.

Mid-way through the night we took a walk around Columbia Park to get some fresh air and walk off a little of the food. Beautiful spring night.

Once the Coppa had rested Chris carved it up. Perfectly pink and delicious.

Izzy kitty enjoyed the festivities too.

Eating, drinking, and more eating, drinking. Good times.

With dessert we did a Toro Limoncello taste-off from a couple batches — mine and Loly and Faulkner’s. Both were awesome.

Some of Faulkner and other’s instant photos from the dinner.

Chris’s Toro Panna Cotta. Really good as always. The one in the pie dish is topped with red wine braised pears and apples with cinnamon, cloves and star anise. The individual ones are with his blood orange Campari topping. YUM! Great way to finish the meal.

Cheers to you for reading this! Maybe you’ll put together one of these for a cookbook too? I highly recommend it. So fun. Happy Friday!

Sandor Ellix Katz Powell’s Books Event for Wild Fermentation 2nd Edition

March 20th, 2017

I’m so lucky!! Me and Sandor signing books after his full house book event at Powell’s for the 2nd edition of Wild Fermentation. Wild Fermentation is the book that’s had the biggest and most positive impact on my life. Photo by Dane Fredericks of Powell’s Books.

I’ve been very lucky over the years to get to be “in conversation” with all sorts of incredible food and drink people such as Mark Bittman, Dana Cowin and now Sandor Ellix Katz at my favorite bookstore on the planet — Powell’s Books. Sandor was in town mid-February for various events on his book tour for the second edition of Wild Fermentation and I was the lucky one who got to spend the night asking him questions in front of a full house in the Powell’s Books Pearl Room. Thank you life.

For those of you who couldn’t make the event I uploaded the audio of it here. Also, Sandor did some radio and TV segments while in town and you can check out his KATU News AM Northwest spot here and his KBOO Healthwatch show feature here.

Below are bunch of photos from the standing room-only excellent Powell’s event. Thank you Powell’s Books, Sandor and everyone who came out and made the night special.

Full house of Sandor fans and fermentation enthusiasts!

Before the event Sandor served up some of his delicious fermented daikon that he makes every year from a Tennessee neighbor’s cover crop. So generous, so yummy!

Sandor talking about everything from his 55-gallon bourbon barrels that he’s used in the past to ferment vegetables to his recent travels in Asia and all of the ferments that he tried and learned about while there. Photo by Loly LeBlanc.

So cute! And look at all of those beautiful life-changing books. So colorful and inspiring inside and out. Photo by David Barber.

We got through my questions and then opened it up to the audience. When an audience member asked Sandor about the potential spirituality of fermentation he summed it up after thinking about it for a moment as — “unseen forces can be very powerful.” So beautiful and true. Photo by Denise Pasquinelli.

Long line of folks after waited to talk to Sandor and get their 2nd edition of Wild Fermentation signed.

At the very end Dane Fredericks of Powell’s had Sandor and I sign a bunch of books. Such a treat. Such an honor. I am officially the luckiest.

Thank you so very much Sandor & Powell’s! And thanks to everyone who came out for the event.

Purchase the 2nd edition of Wild Fermentation.

Fermentation Future Forum 2017

March 20th, 2017

On day two of F3 I got to speak with Yusuke Sezaki, 4th generation owner of Kaneshichi katsuobushi, for awhile (thanks to Etsuyo who translated). I ended up leaving with his handmade kezuriki (katsuobushi grater box) and two of his perfectly paired katsuobushi that are smoked, sun dried and fermented for months. I gave him a copy of my book, some Bee Local honey and I invited him to the Portland Fermentation Festival. I hope that he comes! So lucky that I got to meet Yusuke.

I had the extremely good fortune to be invited to speak at Tokyo’s first annual Fermentation Future Forum (F3) in January. The forum was organized by cultural luminary Teruo Kurosaki and his bright and creative staff. Kurosaki-san is a world renowned designer, former owner of Idee, founder of the Tokyo United Nations University Farmers Market, publisher-owner of Media Surf, owner-founder of Midori co-working spaces, Freedom University and much, much more. I have had the pleasure of getting to know him the past several months through a project that I am editing for Hawthorne Books — the English edition of True Portland — which comes out this summer.

Pretty soon after Kurosaki-san and I met he was interested in the annual Portland Fermentation Festival which I co-founded with my dear friends George Winborn and David Barber in 2009. Some folks close to him attended this year’s late October festival and the next thing you know I had an invite to come speak at his first annual Fermentation Future Forum. Kurosaki-san works fast!

There is much to share about F3, which was held at the United Nations University and Kurosaki’s UNU Farmers Market there — and I think that photos do the best job. They give you an eye into just how special and inspiring the weekend was. I also uploaded my talk here if you want to have a listen. The translated talk (translated by Mai Oyama and moderated by my friend Etsuyo Okajima of Freedom University) took place in the main hall at the United Nations University where the forum took place.

The talk right before mine featured super rad hip hop DJ Misoshiru (making fermented food and other Japanese traditional foods and cooking hip in Japan through her music) along with Seiichiro Tsuji, a specialist of Japanese fermented foods from 6,000 years ago during Japan’s Jomon period. This sort of program coupling gives you just a bit of an idea of what a diverse feed the mind and feed the belly festival F3 was. Thousands attended and it was a huge success. There was also the outdoor part of the fermented food festival that took place during the indoor talks (also free and open to the public) where fest attendees sampled all sorts of sakes, misos, cured meats and more from the makers themselves. Chef Shinobu Namae of two-star Michelin restaurant L’Effervescence was there serving up one of the best ramens I’ve ever tasted, Yoshida Brewery (of the film Birth of Sake) was there sampling sakes and many, many others were there from throughout Japan serving up delicious and creative ferments.

Again, I am so honored that I got to be a part of Tokyo’s first annual fermentation festival and I hope that we have many years of colorful, creative and inspiring collaboration ahead between the Fermentation Future Forum and the Portland Fermentation Festival.

Fermentation Future Forum — F3

Listen to my talk at F3

Chef Shinobu Namae of 2 Michelin star restaurant L’Effervescence with his enormous crazy tasty pot of ramen at the outdoor sampling area of F3. The talks and workshops were all inside. Shinobu used Yusuke’s Kaneshichi katsuobushi for it. I will dream of this ramen. Incredible.

Soooo cold! Luckily there were a lot of crazy tasty sakes on hand to warm us up.

It was really crazy having just watched the excellent documentary Birth of Sake which features this fellow — Yachan aka Yasuyuki (Yas) Yoshida — sixth generation at Yoshida Brewery and the next in line to take over the brewery. Yas is in the yellow jacket and to see him and Yoshida at F3 was wild and…

I got to try Yoshida’s newest winter sake. It tasted like lychee and grapefruit and snow all at once. I’ll never forget it and I really hope to have it again soon.

F3 was part indoors — talks and workshops — and this outdoor area and the adjoining corridor, that’s not in view, was where all of the fermentation sampling took place. Beyond that and out front was the weekend United Nations University Farmers Market which gets 15-20k visitors a day.

These folks put together enormous pot after boiling pot of imoni with lots of miso, taro, burdock and wild mushrooms. Both days of F3 were extremely windy and cold so this was a very popular soup. They would hit the soup lid as they propped it up really hard with the ladle, treating it like a giant gong, every time that the soup was ready.

Close-up of the delicious imoni.

I certainly wasn’t the only one who enjoyed it.

This warm amazake (low or no alcohol fermented rice drink) was such a treat too. No sugar or sweetener added but so naturally sweet. Another unforgettable taste from F3.

I really love that F3 was free to attend (the talks and the food sampling were free and open to the public and you bought stickers for food/drink samples) and that they had these two types of reusable sake cups that you could purchase for sampling. Brilliant.

This was the only cured meat at F3 and it was yummy.

Did you know that Japan has a Miss Sake? They do! This is her — Mai Morita. She travels the world as an ambassador of Japanese sake. Love it. A lot of the organizers and VIP participants wore these white F3 lab suits. So stylish and fun.

Bird’s eye view of the main outdoor corridor of F3.

The Saturday F3 workshop that Luuvu Hoang, Etsuyo Okajima and I did at nearby Midori. Luu did a demo. on fermented Vietnamese food, I spoke about Portland and the Portland Fermentation Festival and we all hung out together for three hours learning things and eating yummy things. It was awesome.

This sign for it made me happy.

Afterward Luuvu and I walked over to the F3 food/drink area and got Shinobu’s awesome ramen made with Yusuke’s katsuobushi. The stuff of dreams.

Yusuke Sezaki (one of my favorite people that I met in Tokyo) of the legendary Kaneshichi — maker of katsuobushi. Yusuke is who Rene Redzepi travels to in order to learn about katsuobushi. Redzepi is currently experimenting with making bear and venison katsuobushi. Yusuke is helping him.

The perfectly coupled katsuobushi that Yusuke gave me. (He also hid a third in the bag.) In Japan when couples marry a traditional parting gift for good fortune is this — a “male” and “female” katsuobushi — pieces that fit perfectly together. It’s rare and brings good luck.

I really wanted to do this 50-minute sake tasting but we were too social to make it happen. We wanted to walk around and talk to everyone. Next time.

They had an F3 DJ!! He played Roy Ayers’ Everybody Loves the Sunshine and during it the sun came out. It had been cloudy for a bit. So cool.

All of the signage and graphics for the festival were striking.

Super cool festival poster front…

And back.

A box of F3 images. It’s astounding how well designed every little detail was at the forum.

Etusyo Okajima (moderator), Mai Oyama (translator) and me before my F3 talk.

Right before my talk was one with super hip DJ Misoshiru and Seiichiro Tsuji, a specialist of Japanese fermented foods from 6,000 years ago during Japan’s Jomon period. This sort of program coupling gives you just a bit of an idea of what a diverse feed the mind and feed the belly festival F3 was.

Sandor’s book on display on the table outside of the main hall!!

I got to meet Kantaro Oizumi and sample his kombucha which was inspired by trips to Portland after our Portland Fermentation Festival! Kentaro will be launching his Japanese kombucha later this month at Kombuchakon in Long Beach, CA. It’s really, really good stuff.

Kurosaki-san, Etsuyo, Mai and I trying Kentaro’s kombucha before my talk.

I had such a great time talking about the Portland Fermentation Festival and Portland food/drink at F3. We all sat on bean bags in the middle of the room and while Mai translated someone was also typing up what I said in characters that were projected on large screens. So well organized for year one. Really fun talk. There’s a link above in the main body of the post if you want to listen to it on Soundcloud.

Left to right: Mai’s mom (I forget her name!), Mai, Etsuyo and me after the talk. All bundled up and ready to hit the fest food/drink area again.

First stop, hot sake! Just what the Dr. ordered.

The long line to get into F3 never let up on either day. So cool.

I got to meet my Portland friends’ — Earnest and Yuri Migaki, makers of Jorinji Miso — friend! Kousaku Hotta of Salmon & Trout with his super mackerel sandwich.

I didn’t get to try these but they looked awesome.

This realllllly young sake (day two of fermentation) was so good. It reminded Etsuyo of the strawberry in mochi (ichigo daifuku) that she had at our kaiseki dinner at Higashiya Ginza the night before.

More really yummy sake — this time from Heiw Shuzou where one of Etsuyo’s friends brews. So cold outside!!!

Sake lees aka kasu from one of the sake brewery’s. It’s used to make amazake and sometimes miso. It’s also traditionally used as face paint. I didn’t try any and I wish I’d gotten a bag to bring home.

Aaaaand that’s a wrap. Thank you F3 and Kurosaki-san and everyone who helped put F3 together and attended. What a dream.

I was lucky enough to get to spend a lot of time during my visit to Tokyo with this the man — the man who made it all happen. He got me to Tokyo and took care of everything. F3 founder and one of my heroes — Teruo Kurosaki. I can’t thank him enough. Long live Kurosaki-san and long live F3!

Thank you for reading this. Now go figure out how you can visit Tokyo soon!!

Portland Fermentation Festival 2016 Redux

March 20th, 2017

Perennial festival favorite — Choi’s Kimchi. Co-owner Matt Choi on the right and family and business friend Moah Son on the left. Matt’s mom Chong — co-owner of Choi’s Kimchi stopped by for a minute but she’d been up the night before until 4am making kimchi so she was a littttttle tired and headed home. Matt was on last year’s and this year’s Panel of Fermentation Experts.

Well, we did it again — another wild, stinky and super fun Portland Fermentation Festival at Ecotrust! This year’s Seventh Annual fest was chock-full of tasty funky fermented foods, smarty-pants exhibitors and attendees, an excellent Panel of Fermentation Experts, all sorts of fun DIY demo’s, rooftop good vibes thanks to DJ Jimbo (check out his festival playlists here and here) and Reverend Nat’s Hard Cider and much much more. Thank you all for coming out for it and joining the stink!

We put the Portland Fermentation Festival together every year with a shoestring budget + heaps of volunteered hours (thank you sooooo much to all of our kick-ass volunteers!) and as always we’re so grateful that Ecotrust puts up with us year after year. Thank you again Ecotrust! We love you.

We had some great coverage this year including this segment on KGW News with Cassidy Quinn. We’ve posted most of the other coverage on social media. If you’d like to keep up with local fermenty goings-on please check out Facebook and Twitter pages.

Below are a whole bunch of photos from this year’s Stinkfest! If you have some great ones too please post them to the Facebook page or Twitter them with the hashtag #pdxfermentfest.

Thank you, thank you, thank you and see you all again next year we hope! Stay stinky! Oh, and please let me know if I attributed anything incorrectly. Thanks!

Pre-fest KGW News coverage thanks to Cassidy Quinn. She, Nat and Claudia tried Nat’s chicha on camera AND Nat chewed and spit up some of the corn mash that this traditional Peruvian corn drink is made of. You read that correctly — they essentially drank Nat’s spit! (I did too and it was actually pretty good — light, sweet and slightly roasty smoky) Nat always brings something wildly experimental to the fest every year and we love him so much for it.

We kicked off this year’s fest with a super inspiring and informative Panel of Fermentation Experts with left to right: Tara Whitsitt (Fermentation on Wheels), David Barber (Picklopolis), Matt Choi (Choi’s Kimchi), Nat West (Reverend Nat’s Hard Cider) and Claudia Lucero (Urban Cheesecraft).

A little bit closer. Such a great panel! We ended it on each of their best pieces of advice for the beginning fermenter. The general gist: just do it. You don’t need fancy equipment or lots of know-how, this is a born of mistakes primitive way of preserving food. Tap into that and have fun. Kick your intimidation to the curb.

Once the panel concluded the doors opened for the first of the night’s two tastings and madness ensued. A fun, yummy, wild ferments madness.

Portland Fermentation Festival co-organizers left to right: David Barber, me, George Winborn. We love you!

Nat West serving up his Peruvian chewed/spit fermented corn drink. Nat always makes really unusual experimental ferments just for the fest. Last year he sampled his Mongolian milk wine and the year before that he brought his fermented LEG OF LAMB cider! Wacky and awesome.

Connie and Brian Shaw of Hood River’s Oregon Brineworks always bring the most delicious spread of their ferments. This year was no different. You can find their ferments all over Portland (at New Seasons, Green Zebra, Peoples Food Coop ++) — they’re soooo yummy!

Owner Sash Sunday of Olympia’s OlyKraut serving up all different kraut samples (also available in Portland markets) AND pouring shots of spicy spectacular pickle brine. YUM!! Next level ingredient for rad Bloody Marys.

George Tsesoukas of Soma Kombucha (based in St. Johns) pouring up tart and tasty kombucha samples. So many different tasty flavors.

Out on the mezzanine we had three demo’s throughout the night. Austin Durant of the Fermenters Club (he came up all the way from San Diego!) did this fun and inspiring DIY kimchi and gochujang making demo.

Right across the mezzanine at the same time Claudia Lucero led a fermented nut cheese demo. I definitely am going to try my hand at these now. So yummy, tart, smooth and creamy. She’s currently working on a book all about dairy-free cheeses! Her excellent One-Hour Cheese cookbook came out in 2014.

Festival veteran Heidi Nestler, owner of Pickled Things, sampled her sticky tasty natto at this year’s fest and…

Heidi also led a demo on pickled Japanese vegetables — — nukazuke, misozuke and kojizuke. I really wish I could have gone to that one.

While Heidi did her demo festival volunteer superstar Marty handed out natto samples at her table. Jimbo got to try natto for the first time! He loved it.

I’m bummed I didn’t get any photos of the lovely ticketing ladies in the atrium this year but I did get this one with three of them. Left to right: Michelle, Stacy and Loly. All dear friends.

Lion Heart Kombucha! I asked one little boy at the fest this year what his favorite festival sample was and he said, “ALL the kombucha!” Love it.

Tim Root’s incredible festival poster this year! We’re so lucky that he continues to do our poster year after year. So creeeeeepy awesome.

Colin Franger of Blue Bus Cultured Foods in Bingen, Washington. Colin has been coming to the fest for years sampling his yummy ferments and you can find a lot of them in Portland at New Seasons, Whole Foods, various co-ops and other markets. That’s his green bean kimchi — got more than one sample ?

Careen Stoll — another festival veteran — brought her gorgeous handmade crocks and mortars and pestles again this year. Check out her goods online http://www.fire-keeper.org/

While Claudia Lucero did her demo folks sampled her awesome fermented nut cheeses.

Jon Westdahl and Julie sampling all different Squirrel & Crow tasty tempehs, misos and one of my favorite festival tastes this year — cultured vegan butter. So good.

A little closer…

Festival co-organizer David Barber of Picklopolis sampling his always delicious sour dills. One of my favorite pickles on the planet.

My good friend and super talented animation artist Stephen Bodin put this cool image together for us to announce the festival a few months ago. Love it so much.

First time fest exhibitors Sue and Wendy of NW Ferments (they sell all sorts of fermentation starter cultures) sampling their tasty kombucha.

Rooftop good vibes (and tunes) were provided by DJ Jimbo and Reverend Nat’s Hard Cider. Crazily enough we were rain-free yet another year. The Fermentation Fest is always on a beautiful night. Really pretty view on the Ecotrust roof.

Grant from Reverend Nat’s Hard Cider poured cider on the rooftop all night long. Nat West of Reverend Nat’s Hard Cider’s is my very, very, very favorite hard cider maker.

Matthew of Eva’s Herbucha (one of Portland’s first commercial kombucha makers) poured yummy kombucha from their tap to thirsty festival goers.

I always end these posts with a photo of festival co-organizer George Winborn (in the background) in the jetpack vacuum cleaner but this year David got the honor ?

Thank you to every last one of you who came out and were a part of making this year’s SEVENTH annual Portland Fermentation Festival so special. Love, love, love you!