2012 Oregon Brewers Festival

July 23rd, 2012

The 2011 Oregon Brewers Festival, photo taken by Timothy Horn.

The 25th annual Oregon Brewer’s Festival is less than a week away and if you haven’t made plans yet to attend I think you should consider it. I’m really looking forward to this year’s OBF because there are all sorts of tasty beers that I haven’t tried yet on the lineup. This year OBF will host 85 craft breweries from around the country and serve more than 30 styles of beer. The expected attendance is 80,000 so be ready for the madness, 130-plus beers to try and the festival’s debut of a sour beer tent if you like the winky beers.

A few facts about this year’s Oregon Brewers Festival:

The highest alcohol content beer this year will be Dogfish Head’s Positive Contact at 9 percent ABV.

There will be more fruit beers this year — 21st Amendment’s watermelon wheat has been the festival’s top seller for years.

There are six breweries bringing organic beers: Bison Brewing Company, Eel River Brewing Company, Fort George Brewery, Hopworks Urban Brewery, Logsdon Farmhouse Ales, Mt. Emily Ale House and Old Market Pub and Brewery.

Here’s the gist of the festival straight from the press release:

Better known as the OBF, the festival was the brainchild of Art Larrance, co-founder of Portland Brewing Co. Art had traveled to the original Oktoberfest in Munich and knew what a big beer party was like. His goal was to re-create a similar atmosphere here in Portland and bring attention to the resurgence of microbrews.

Art collaborated with craft beer veterans Dick and Nancy Ponzi of BridgePort Brewing Co. and Kurt & Rob Widmer of Widmer Bros. Brewing Co. to produce the first Oregon Brewers Festival in 1988. Despite the limited number of microbreweries nationwide at the time – or perhaps because of that fact– the festival was overwhelmingly successful and has never looked back.

25th annual Oregon Brewers Festival
www.oregonbrewfest.com
July 26-29, 2012
Tom McCall Waterfront Park
Main entrance at SW Oak Street and Naito Parkway

Thursday through Saturday taps are open noon to 9pm; Sunday taps are open noon to 7pm.
Admission to the festival is free.
In order to drink beer you must purchase a $6 2012 mug. Beer tastes are purchased with $1 tokens. 4 tokens gets you a mug of beer and 1 gets you a taste.
Cash only event — ATMs are on-site.
Minors are allowed into the event only if accompanied by a parent.

Grizzly Tattoo Opening Party Redux

June 13th, 2011

So many good eats at Grizzly Tattoo's opening party!

Wow, what a party! My boyfriend Tyler Adams’ new North Williams Ave. tattoo shop — Grizzly Tattoo — opened with a bang a little over a week ago and a lot of you were there, and then some. Hundreds came out to celebrate and I’ve included a few peeks into the night below. (I only took a few photos at the very beginning because it quickly got too crowded. I also wrote about the party here.) Awesome!

We reached out to neighborhood businesses for food and drink donations and holy bleep they rose to the occasion. (Tyler tattoos a lot of food and drink folks in town.)

On the food and drink donation front we had Yaquina Bay oysters on the half-shell hand delivered by EaT Oyster Bar owners Ethan and Tobias; chicken liver sherry mousse, poached almonds, pickled cuke and more from Tasty n Sons, a keg of lager from Hopworks BikeBar, pulled pork sliders and traditional sliders from Che Cafe food cart, all sorts of sweets from Pix Patisserie and Jaime Henderson, secret loveliness from The Bye & Bye, mini pies from Loly LeBlanc, delicious mustards from Creaux Creole Mustard and the list goes on. Wow.

I also made a few things myself — a gallon of pickled asparagus (from our neighbor’s friend’s farm), a gallon of pickled beets and two tapenades — one with anchovies and one vegan. Oh, and Faulkner Short’s photography will be up in the shop for several weeks so stop by and check it out. There are some really nice photos for sale.

Thank you to everyone who donated! Thank you to everyone who came out for the party! Thank you Portland! Go Grrrrrizzly!

Thank you so much for donating food and drink to Grizzly Tattoo's opening party!

More deliciousness from Grizzly Tattoo's opening party!

A few minutes into the party. Got too crowded to take pics shortly after...

I called dibs on the first tattoo at Grizzly Tattoo so Tyler gave me these feathers. Black and blue. Love it.

Grizzly Tattoo
www.grizzlytattoo.com
3949 North Williams Ave.
Portland, Oregon
503.265.8146
tyler at grizzly tattoo dot com

Check out Tyler’s tattoos

Grizzly Tattoo Opening Party Friday, June 3rd 7pm-late

May 30th, 2011

My boyfriend Tyler Adams is opening a new Portland tattoo shop — Grizzly Tattoo — on North Williams (next to Hopworks BikeBar in the newly constructed EcoFlats building) and he’s celebrating with an opening party this Friday, June 3rd 7pm till late that you and all your friends and family (and their friends and family…) are invited to! Hope you can come out and help us celebrate with food, drink, music, a photography show by our friend Faulkner Short, musical styling by our friend Rale Sidebottom and a tattoo giveaway.

Hopworks Urban Brewery has been generous enough to donate a keg of their delicious lager for the event, and Tasty n Sons, The Bye & Bye, Pix Patisserie, Che Cafe food cart and Jamie Henderson are being the best neighbors in the world by donating some of their delicious food. So come on out and eat, drink and be hairy with Grizzly!

I’m so happy that Tyler is in the same neighborhood as the lovely folks at Tasty n Sons, Pix Patisserie, Lodekka double decker dress shop (they’re having a party on Saturday, June 4th!), EaT Oyster Bar, Che Cafe food cart and then some.

Here’s to Grrrrrrizzly! Grrrr!

Grizzly Tattoo shaping up. I took this photo last Friday -- a week before the opening party THIS Friday! No sleep till Grizzly!

Mr. Grizzly

Grizzly Tattoo
www.grizzlytattoo.com
3949 North Williams Ave.
Portland, Oregon
503.265.8146
tyler at grizzly tattoo dot com

Check out Tyler’s tattoos

Taste of the Nation 2011

May 9th, 2011

Celilo Restaurant's (in Hood River) morel and fromage blanc topped crackers were super tasty.

Taste of the Nation truly gets bigger and better every year. We had a fantastic time eating and drinking all sorts of amazing things from Portland area chefs and food/drink folks at this year’s Taste of the Nation at Luxe Autohaus. (Always made much better by the fact that 100% of the proceeds go toward local child hunger relief.) If you don’t know about the event you can read more about it here and here. We paced ourselves a lot better this year so that by the end (and we stayed until the very end — as in tables being folded) we felt full but not roll-out-the-door full.

It’s hard to pick favorites but I think it’s good to give credit where credit is due. SO here are my top five favorite things that I ate at this year’s Taste of the Nation (not to mention all the delicious wine, beer and bubbly) followed by photos…

Top five bites at this year’s Taste of the Nation in no particular order…
La Calaca Comelona’s rainbow chard wrapped masa with pork in a red sauce
Biwa’s braised pork and house pickled vegetable lettuce wraps
Bamboo Sushi’s Oregon albacore carpaccio
Fifty Lick’s coconut lemon saffron sorbet
Davis Street Tavern’s cold carrot fennel soup with sorrel salsa verde

Screen Door's mini chocolate and peanut butter pies were really good. Especially when eaten right after their...

Smoked meatloaf and whipped potato bites topped with crispy shallots. Yeah, pretty genius side-by-side.

Biwa kicked ass as usual with their braised pork lettuce wraps with pickled veggies.

Fratelli was set up right next to Biwa with some yummy rockfish crudo that got topped with yuzu foam seconds after I took this photo.

No, he did not get stuck in the ice cream cooler. 50 Licks' coconut lemon saffron sorbet is incredible.

Andina had a lovely spread of marinated fish in a aji colorado al batan sauce, fava bean salad and okra rellena stuffed with braised oxtail. Top that why don't you.

We hung out with friends until the lights-out end. Another fantastic Taste of the Nation with 100 percent of proceeds going to local child hunger relief organizations. Cheers Portland!

Share Our Strength’s Taste of the Nation
Monday, May 2nd, 2011
5-9pm
LUXE Autohaus
410 NE 17th Ave.
Portland, OR 97232
Stay tuned for next year’s Taste of the Nation
www.portlandtaste.org

Oregon Culinary Institute Pig Project Dinners

November 5th, 2010

Red Wattle piglets...

In October I got an invitation to attend one of two Oregon Culinary Institute dinners that I’ve been looking forward to ever since. Both dinners sound great but by process of already-have-plans elimination I’m going to the first one next Tuesday night.

What exactly am I talking about? Here’s some info…

Tuesday, November 9th, 7pm @ Oregon Culinary Institute — Suds & Swine five-course fundraiser dinner with beer pairings from Upright Brewing to benefit Chefs Collaborative. MENU & TICKETS.

Wednesday, November 10th, 7pm @ Oregon Culinary Institute — Wine & Swine five-course fundraiser dinner with wine pairings from Chehalem Winery to benefit Ecotrust’s Farm to School program. MENU & TICKETS.

Tickets for each dinner are $75.

Oregon Culinary Institute chefs at Heritage Farms Northwest.

A little background…

In May, OCI purchased three Red Wattle hogs from Heritage Farms Northwest in Dallas, Oregon. Red Wattles are a breed of hog listed on Slow Food USA’s Ark of Taste. According to Slow Food USA, “Red Wattle pork is exceptionally lean and juicy with a rich beef-like taste and texture.” Mmm.

The breed is named for its color and distinctive wattles that hang from either side of its neck — similar to the wattles of some goat breeds. Since May two of the pigs have been pen-raised at Sweet Briar Farms in Eugene and the other pasture-raised at Heritage Farms Northwest. All OCI culinary students were invited to participate in the project.

On November 9th and 10th OCI Chef Instructor Josh Blythe and a crew of students will prepare five-course dinners with each dish featuring side-by-side comparisons of the pasture- and pen-raised pork. OCI Baking and Pastry Chef Instructor Salvatore Hall and his students will prepare dessert. Each course will be tailored to the beverages served that night.

Wealth Underground Farm, an organic CSA farm located on Newberry Rd. off Skyline Blvd. in Portland, is providing produce for both dinners.

All events surrounding this project, leading up to and including the final dinners, are being filmed and edited into a final video production by Actual Industries.

Learn more about the dinners here.
Learn more about the pig project here.

About Oregon Culinary Institute:

Established in 2006 as a division of Pioneer Pacific College, Oregon Culinary Institute offers a complete, practical and affordable culinary arts education where students can earn Associate of Applied Science degrees in Culinary Management, Baking and Pastry Management, and Restaurant Management. The school also offers diplomas in Culinary Arts, Baking and Pastry Arts, and Restaurant Management, Students may also earn a Sommelier Diploma at Oregon Culinary Institute in cooperation with the International Sommelier Guild. OCI’s student-run fine-dining restaurant serves lunch and dinner, most Mondays through Fridays. Reservations are recommended.

In the walk-in until next week's dinners...

Grand Opening Revisited

October 25th, 2010

ATTENTION: My boyfriend, Tyler Adams, no longer co-owns Fortune Tattoo. Visit his North Portland shop — Grizzly Tattoo — which opened June, 2011! For more info. visit www.grizzlytattoopdx.com, 503.265.8146, tyler at grizzly tattoo dot com. Grrrrrrrizzly!

Big night for Fortune Tattoo. So big folks spilled into the space next door...

Last Friday’s Fortune Tattoo grand opening party was awesome — thanks to a lot of you! We knew it would be big but we had no idea how big. Thanks to everyone who came and made it such a special night for shop owners Tyler Adams and Ms. Mikki. And thank you to everyone who donated food, drink, music and elbow grease to get the shop sails up.

I’m posting some photos here — mostly of the food and drink for reasons you all should understand — but if you didn’t make it and want to check out the new shop get in there. Fortune is located between Foti’s Greek Deli and Southeast’s Fire On The Mountain and just a few doors down from EastBurn so if you’re craving any of that stop by Fortune en route. Here are some party pics…

There will be more Fortune parties if you missed this one...

The party spilled into this space nextdoor to Fortune for food, drink and music...

Bluehour's Kenny Giambalvo donated all sorts of fantastic food and stopped by for awhile too.

Thanks Kenny! Amazing...

Toro Bravo's John Gorham also donated a bunch of delicious food...

Got early shots of everything and glad I did because the food was amazing and went fast. Thanks John!

Domaine Serene couldn't have been more generous with their kick ass pinot noir.

And MacTarnahan's rocked with THREE kegs of donated Amber Ale and Hum Bug'r Porter poured by good friends.

Wouldn't have been a Fortune Tattoo party without fortune cookies...

Say Cheese: Last Day for Steve’s Cheese Feb. 21st, Sneak Peak at Cheese Bar to Open Mid-March

February 8th, 2010
One door closes and another opens -- Steve Jones will still have his hand in cheese at Cheese Bar on SE Belmont St. and 60th Ave.

One door closes and another opens -- Steve Jones will still have his hand in cheese at Cheese Bar on SE Belmont St. and 60th Ave.

Only the good die young…

but only the great rise again like the phoenix.

Sorry for the cliche overload but it’s hard not to wax poetic when discussing Steve Jones’ still-open-but-not-for-long Steve’s Cheese on NW Thurman and his newest venture Cheese Bar due to open mid-March at 60th and SE Belmont.

I spoke with Steve late last week and here’s the scoop…

How would you describe Cheese Bar?

Cheese Bar is a cross between an old world delicatessen and a tabac.

What’s a tabac?

In France and Italy both there are these things called tabacs and they’re on almost every corner. It’s where old men come in in the morning and buy their tobacco — although we obviously won’t be selling tobacco — and then they’ll stand and have a glass of espresso and maybe a croissant. And then in the evening they’ll come back and have a glass of grappa and piece of cheese or something.

I’ve always really liked the social aspect of them. People coming in and out — and quite often they’re in and out in twenty minutes. It’s really the only fast option you have in Europe — everything else takes forever. So it’s kind of cool you can get a little bite or boost and keep on moving. That’s kind of been my intention with this. If people want to linger they can but Cheese Bar is more for when you’re on your way home and you stop and have a glass of beer and a piece of cheese, or a glass of wine and a small bite.

Other differences between Steve’s Cheese and Cheese Bar?

I keep telling everyone [Cheese Bar is] everything you’ve got now [Steve’s Cheese] and more. We’ll still carry everything including all the meat and cheese but you’ll also be able to have a beer while your shopping. That’s, you know, my dream moment. To get a beer and then shop for cheese. I mean, hell yeah, that’s perfect.

I think if we’ve got a really long line I’m just going to grab a pitcher of beer and just pour everyone a little glass and say, “Here, have a beer.” I used to shop at an old meat shop in St. Louis and no matter what time of day you’d walk in they’d ask — “Want a bavarian beer?” It’s 9:30 in the morning and they’d be offering you a beer…”

Same killer cheese selection at Steve Jones' Cheese Bar plus beer and then some

Same killer cheese selection at Cheese Bar plus beer and then some

Other things I learned about Cheese Bar:

The small menu will be stocked with sandwiches, soups, salads (such as garbanzo, tuna, and red pepper) snacks (sardines on toast), and hot plates ranging from $2-$10.

Cheese Bar will have the same rocking cheese selection (available in-house or to-go) as Steve’s Cheese as well as all the other retail food and drink products such as vinegars, pastas, pickles and more.

There will be in-house beer, wine, and beer and wine cocktails. Curious about the latter — we shall see.

And the look and feel? Lots of reclaimed wood and reused materials, four tables, two small bars (one standing bar, the other with stools), and a warm color scheme with lots of reds and browns.

I know where I’ll be come mid-March.

Cheese Bar
opens mid-March
503.222.6014
6031 SE Belmont St.
10am-11pm Tue.-Sun.

Leftbank Cafe: Thursday Happy Hour Starting Dec. 3rd

December 2nd, 2009
Behind these doors lies a lovely Portland happy hour.

Behind these doors lies a lovely Portland happy hour.

The Leftbank Café’s weekly Thursday night happy hour starts this week — Thursday, Dec. 3rd — from 5-8pm featuring soup, small bites and beer/wine pairings. This first happy hour marks the launch of the café’s three daily soups — all gluten-free, one vegan, made from scratch with local seasonal ingredients.

The Leftbank Project is a hub of food culture with the Leftbank Café, Portland Farmers Market headquarters, and Upright Brewing. Upright’s beer will be served at Leftbank Café’s Thursday happy hour.

Here’s a sneak peek of the cafe’s constantly changing menu:

Breakfast Special: Bagel Sandwich with Eggs and Cheese

Soups: Butternut Squash, Creamy Mushroom or Miso

Dahl: Spicy Yellow Lentils over Basmati Rice Served with Lemon Basil Raita, Pear Chutney and House Made Flat Bread

Roasted Beet Salad: Roasted Beets with Preserved Lemon Vinaigrette, Feta Cheese, Olives and Spicy Greens

Prosciutto and Fresh Mozzarella Panino: with Fig Spread and Arugula on Grand Central Bread

Grilled Cheese Panino: Tillamook White Cheddar on Grand Central Bread

Roasted Vegetable Panino: Zucchini, Yellow Squash, Roasted Red Pepper and Bucheron Cheese on Grand Central Bread

Deli Sandwich: Smoked Turkey with Oregon Cranberry Chutney, Hazelnut Butter and Cream Cheese on Grand Central Bread

Hot Sandwich: BBQ Pulled Pork, Braised with Upright Beer and Topped with Apple and Pepper Slaw

Leftbank Café
www.leftbankproject.com/cafe
240 North Broadway
Portland, Oregon
503.281.1187
Café hours: Mon.-Fri. 8am-2pm
Café happy hour: Thursday 5-8pm

Worth the Wait: Hopworks Urban Brewery

July 27th, 2009
You're not allowed entry unless you bike to Hopworks' first Biketoberfest all day Saturday, September 19th.

You're not allowed entry unless you bike to Hopworks' first Biketoberfest all day Saturday, September 19th.

Months before Hopworks Urban Brewery opened its doors in March of 2008 I was chomping at the bit. I’d been drinking HUB beers — along with many other lucky Portlanders — since fall 2007 at various pubs and restaurants around town and they were good. Very good — especially the IPA.

Hopworks owner Christian Ettinger didn’t plan to open the doors to his extreme green Southeast Powell Boulevard brewpub several months after he’d started wholesaling kegs to local establishments but that’s just the way it worked out. According to Christian the production facility took a lot less time to build out than the upstairs brewpub. It’s a good thing it did because it was genius marketing. Folks drank delicious local mystery brew at top Portland pubs and the buzz about it and its home built and built.

I met up with Christian recently at the brewpub and talked with him about what it’s like when everyone tells you you shouldn’t do something and you do it anyway (open a brewpub on a busy arterial lacking in foot traffic), his architect dad Roy Ettinger who was HUB’s contractor, Christian’s plans for another Hopworks (probably within the next two years), and 3,440 barrels of organic beer on the wall. That’s the number of beer barrels HUB brewed from its opening in March 2008 until March 2009 — a lot more than the 1,500 Christian anticipated for HUB’s first year. He’s been maniacally busy since retail and wholesale is booming and on the home front Christian’s wife gave birth to their second child two months after HUB opened.

At HUB there are always 10 beers on tap and two cask beers. The six standards include HUB Lager, Crosstown Pale Ale, Velvet ESB, Hopworks IPA, Survival Stout and Deluxe Organic Ale. There are also always four seasonals on tap which keeps the brewers and customers happy.

Hopworks recently started bottling.

Hopworks recently started bottling.

HUB owner Christian Ettinger won best brewmaster and brewery with Laurelwood Pub and Brewery in the 2004 World Beer Cup. Here he promotes peace and his ability to count.

HUB owner Christian Ettinger won best brewmaster and brewery with Laurelwood Pub and Brewery in the 2004 World Beer Cup. Here he promotes peace and his ability to count.

Hopworks uses spent fry oil from the restaurant upstairs to fuel its brew kettle and delivery truck.

Hopworks uses spent fry oil from the restaurant upstairs to fuel its brew kettle and delivery truck.

Reuse is a big part of HUB's aesthetic and culture.

Reuse is a big part of HUB's aesthetic and culture.

Hopworks Urban Brewery
2944 SE Powell Blvd.
503.232.4677
www.hopworksbeer.com

Portland Beer: Widmer Brothers Brewing Company

June 10th, 2009
Optical illusion: this man looks short

Optical illusion: Joe Casey looks short

Widmer’s brewmaster Joe Casey is not short but the 1,000-barrels-of-beer (on the wall…) fermenters he’s standing in front of tend to dwarf things. I met up with Joe Casey recently and even though I’ve lived in Portland since 2002 and really dig Widmer beer I’d never taken a brewery tour. I highly recommend it. I learned a lot including the fact that beer regularly flows underneath Russel Street between the two Widmer buildings which gives a whole new meaning to walking on sunshine. Walking on Widmer Hefeweizen…

The fermenter behind Casey in the photo is filled with that liquid sunshine — Widmer Hefeweizen — the brew that made 20-plus-year-old Widmer Brothers Brewing Company famous. The Hefeweizen (pronounced HEH-feh-vite-zen) sits in the fermentation tank for only about a week since it ferments quickly and doesn’t need a lot of cold conditioning. Most Widmer beers spend two weeks in the fermenter.

Here are a bunch of other things I learned while walking around the brewery with Casey…

* Widmer brews about 320,000 barrels of beer in their North Portland brewery annually.
* They brew 24 hours a day.
* They use a New Zealand variety of hops that Joe Casey says sometimes tastes like onion.
* Widmer operates a 10-barrel pilot brewery at the Rose Garden where they brew a lot of small batch Gasthaus Pub beers that aren’t available anywhere else (Including the Collaborator Series beers in conjunction with the Oregon Brew Crew) and festival beers.
* Their 100,000 pound malt silos are filled by tanker trucks several times a week.
* The spent grain and yeast goes to a cattle ranch in Central Oregon and a farm on Sauvie Island.
* In the summer the brewery often pushes 110 degrees.
* Widmer hops come from Oregon, Washington and New Zealand.

No that's not bunny food it's hops pellets

No that's not rabbit food it's Oregon hops pellets

Most commercial brewers brew with hops pellets or extracts these days. Casey told me that Anheuser-Busch was one of the last major breweries to hold out on pellets and use whole hops.

Augustus Glup should be happy he didn't fall into one of these

Where eight to nine Widmer beers are brewed daily

If you’re looking for Widmer’s version of the Everlasting Gobstopper — the Widmer Altbier yeast strain that Kurt Widmer brought back from Bavaria in the early 1980s — head to OHSU and book flights to Chicago, the UK, and New Hampshire because its safeguarded in labs in all these places.

I can't really explain this but Joe Carey can

Take a tour and the mystery of this photo from Widmer will be solved

Widmer Brewing Company
929 N Russel St.
503.281.3333
www.widmer.com
Schedule a brewery tour