Taste of the Nation Portland 2013

May 30th, 2013

Bollywood Theater's bhel puri with green and tamarind chutneys.

This year’s 26th anniversary Portland Taste of the Nation at McMenamins Crystal Ballroom was incredible as always and rather than type up all of the reasons why I’m going to lay it all out in photos for you. This was the first year Taste was held at the Crystal Ballroom and it’s a great venue although next year they should consider cranking up the air. It got a little toasty. If you weren’t able to make it please consider attending next year. It costs a pretty penny but 100% of proceeds go toward hunger relief in Oregon. Without further ado…

Biwa's soy cured escolar with shaved beets.

Lardo's beautiful porchetta.

Boke Bowl sui mai action.

Craggan hydrating and about to eat a Boke Bowl pork and shrimp sui mai.

Racion's chicharrons topped with tuna? Ahhh, took too long to post this and can't remember exactly but DO remember they were super tasty.

View from the balcony an hour or so into this year's Taste of the Nation.

Our plates of Trigger hot wings and other tasty things with Captured by Porches kolsch.

Anthem Cider's organic hops cider.

Departure's grilled scallop hand roll with coconut miso.

St. Jack's not so pretty but delicious chicken liver mousse with port poached prunes.

Laurelhurst Market's corned beef tongue reubens with a smoky bourbon cocktail. One of my favorites of the night.

And for dessert, 50 Licks soft serve churros and chocolate ice cream.

Stay tuned for next year’s Taste of the Nation! Always delicious and always 100 percent to a great cause.

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...

Portland Fermentation Festival 2010 Revisited

October 21st, 2010

Biwa sous chef Ed Ross serving up a rocking kimchi with big chunks of daikon and lots of fire.

Another year and another briny, stinky, lovely and amazing Portland Fermentation Festival! Thanks to everyone who came out and thanks to all of you who made it happen — especially those who generously sampled their fermented food and drink. You’re amazing.

Thanks also to awesome coverage in Willamette Week, Laura McCandlish’s KBOO Food Show and thanks to all the other publications that helped get the word out! Thank you so much Ecotrust for putting up with us (we’re stinky) for yet another year. We couldn’t have done it without you.

For now, I’m just going to post some photos from last night. I’ll probably follow that up soon enough with even more words, thoughts and photos. (It was an amazing event so it deserves a lot of show and tell.) For now a fermenty feast for your eyes…

Even though we had Mr. President to contend with the crowd was thick.

Peg Butler with her sour pickles and home captured sourdough starter rye bread.

PFF co-organizer extraordinaire George Winborn demo'ing kraut.

PFF co-organizer (also extraordinaire) David Barber and Bonesaw Wilson serving up crunchy delicious Picklopolis pickles.

A lot of people's favorite of the night was Kate Patterson's awesome fermented salmon.

Linda Swanson-Davies' puckery delicious fruit kefir.

Norrie and Anna Gordon's fermented goat cheese, goat butter and then some.

Biwa chef-owner Gabe Rosen and sous chef Ed Ross sampling kimchi.

Anne Berblinger's spicy delicious fermented chiles.

Dan MacDonald serving up his sour radishes and whole cabbage kraut. His radishes were kick ass.

A close-up because Dan's ferments were picture perfect.

I guess I just like butts.

The lovely Tressa Yelig of Salt, Fire & Time shared rocking pumpkin yogurt, green tea kombucha and cortido.

Tressa's super yummy cortido.

Heidi Nestler chopping up garlic for kraut.

Krista Arias and Jeanne sampling cortido.

I'm sad that when I was photographing I didn't catch Chris Musser of Lost Arts Kitchen. These were her supplies for homemade fermented chock-full-of-clove ketchup, mayonnaise and more.

This year we even had merch!

Media Love

July 14th, 2010

KPTV Fox's Better Portland cameraman Eric Patterson and host Brooke Carlson with Tobias Hogan of EaT Oyster Bar.

It’s been crazy the last few weeks. I’m not complaining though — quite the opposite. Beyond all of the book events the amount of media coverage that’s been showered on my book pre- and post-launch has been fantastic. I am extremely grateful. I knew that Portland would welcome this book but I didn’t realize how much.

All of these radio and TV interviews in the past few weeks make me happy that I successfully eliminated the filler word “like” from my vocabulary at the end of high school and beginning of college. My filler now — I didn’t realize it was so pronounced — is “um.” I had no idea how many times I say that until I heard myself on various programs for the book. Any suggestions for quitting “um” are much appreciated. Um, what else…

A featured book at my favorite bookstore Powell's and next to one of my favorite national food folks. Doesn't get much better than that...

I’m going to do a post devoted to Powell’s Books soon here but until then I’d just like you all to know that the book is a New Favorites at the moment there which means it’s heavily placed in all stores and is also 30% off. I don’t know you Ted at Powell’s but I love you and owe you a drink. I feel so honored with the placement and push my book has gotten from Powell’s. I’m also really looking forward to my August 2nd event there.

If you watch the boob tube I’ll be on KOIN news tonight live at some point between 4-5pm. And then after that I’ll be at the Friends of Family Farmers InFARMation at Roots Brewery from 5:30-8:30pm. Tonight’s topic: Eaters’ Bill of Rights. Roots Organic Brewing Company closed its doors yesterday. I don’t have any details just that sad news. Tonight’s InFARMation is canceled and FOFF is looking for a new venue.

On the KBOO Food Show with Laura McCandlish and Delores Custer.

View from my mic...Devlyn Swenson host of Savor PDX on PDX FM.

Here’s some of the media coverage so far:

The Oregonian FOODday, June 2010

Willamette Week, June 2010

KBOO Food Show, June 2010

Fox 12 Better Portland Show, June 2010

Rose City Reader, June 2010

Reading Local Portland, June 2010

PDX.FM Savor Portland, July 2010

Lemonbasil blog, July 2010

Boozy Brunch with din din

May 21st, 2010

Rock me Amadeus. Bring a wig to din din's brunch and booze. (Image courtesy of Tim Gunther)

I get so many press releases that I’ve gotten good at speed reading them. Rarely do I spend more than a minute on one but the press release that I got from din din last week kept me rapt for, well, three minutes. That says a lot and it’s the reason why I’m sharing the details it divulged here. The photo above is of the lovely din din ladies which you can read more about here.

Since the press release rocked, I’m sharing it here verbatim:

Americans like something we call “breakfast for dinner,” but I’ve always been a “dinner for breakfast” kind of girl. There’s something very elegant and effortless about a perfectly poached farm egg on top of last night’s dinner.

My affinity for brunch landed me a stint at Matchbox Lounge as brunch chef, and one Sunday a while back we were lucky enough to host the final stop of the House Spirits Brunch Series. While I was poaching eggs, the House Spirits boys slipped me a sip of what was, at the time, the unreleased MARTEAU absinthe. I was sold. Brunch and spirits.

Since then, the craft distilleries of the Hawthorne area have banded together as Distillery Row. They all work from the ethic of producing the very best of what they do locally, and they get that it makes sense to collaborate. I’m honored to be able to collaborate with them for this brunch series.

So we present six brunches, Saturday & Sunday the last three weeks of May. din din coursed brunch with cocktail pairings by Distillery Row. $35 + gratuity. Coffee by beloved heart. Columbia Gorge juices. At my stomping grounds, Milepost 5*, 900 NE 81st Ave. 11am. rezzo details below.

These are the menus, loosely:

((Sorry about your luck…))
Saturday & Sunday, May 15th & 16th
New Deal Distillery

deep-fried asparagus and steamed oyster with coppa and Piment d’Espelette
New Deal’s house bloody mary with Hot Monkey Spicy Vodka

squash brioche tart with foraged ramps
Princess of Whales (New Deal Mud Puddle Chocolate Vodka, aquavit, and Madeira topped with bubbly)

poached duck egg with braised short rib, sorrel salsa verde, and soft polenta
The Rhubarb Bloom (rhubarb simple syrup, mint, lime, and gin)

soufléed sweet omelette with New Deal Mudpuddle Vodka hazelnut cake
The David Bowie (New Deal Mud Puddle Chocolate Vodka, bourbon, and orange)

Saturday & Sunday May 22nd & 23rd
Highballl Distillery (cocktail pairings TBA)

brioche toast with french breakfast radish, french butter, and fleur de sel

Odessa Blue cheese custard with dressed Weppler Farms greens

french style omelette with stinging nettle pesto, oven-dried tomatoes, and fried potatoes

Elemental Vanilla Espresso Vodka panna cotta with Phelps Creek Pinot Noir-macerated strawberries

Saturday & Sunday May 29th & 30th
House Spirits Distillery (cocktail pairings TBA)

Roquefort toast with soft-boiled egg

crespiau: a cake of paper-thin omelettes layered with herbed black olive tapenade and fennel tomato sauce

tuna with chartreuse lettuce sauce and potato salad

marmalade and orange flower water shortbread tart

to make your rezzo:

send a check for $35/person to:
Courtney Sproule
900 NE 81st Ave #114
Portland, OR 97213


the dates you want to come
the names of those in your party (or at least a total number)
your phone number
your email
any notes you may have for us

As soon as we receive your payment/rezzo, we’ll confirm with you that we did receive it.

We can credit or refund you up to two weeks prior to the din din. If a conflict arises less than two weeks from the dinner, you’re welcome (and encouraged!) to send someone else in your place.

*Milepost 5 is an intentional community of live/work spaces designed for artists and creatives located in Portland’s Montavilla neighborhood.

din din

Taste of the Nation Portland — Spring 2010

May 3rd, 2010

Nuestra Cocina rocked this year's Taste of the Nation...

Last week I got to attend my first Taste of the Nation here in Portland and I’ve been daydreaming about it ever since. I wrote about it on the blog a few times leading up to it because I was given two free tickets to give away in order to promote the 100% charitable event. Every bit of the proceeds from Share Our Strength’s Taste of the Nation go to local hunger relief agencies. How amazing is that?

When you hand in your ticket at the door — the event was at Luxe Autohaus on Northeast 17th — you get a little clear plastic food tray and wine glass to eat and drink from for the duration of the evening. I saw more than one person grabbing napkins to clean up their saucy trays as the night went on. I did once too when I didn’t have any bread to sop up one too many romescos.

I took a bunch of photos of food that I sampled during the three — yes three — hours of eating and drinking. (At least you walked a bit of it off while circling the tables.) There were 50 restaurants, 20 wineries and 5 breweries sampling food and drink. Mostly I drank pinot blanc, viognier and pinot noir from all sorts of local vineyards including Anne Amie Vineyards, Apolloni Vineyards, Lange Estate Winery and more. They poured tasters and sometimes when white followed red I’d have a blushed white.

In addition to incredible food and drink from Portland’s finest — and beyond PDX — there was live music, a silent auction, and even a magician although I never saw him. Maybe he had on his invisible cloak.

Here are some of the really good things I tried…

Nuestra Cocina's housemade tortillas...

Their chicarrones with salsa verde...

Don't touch my Nuestra Cocina barbacoa taco...

Firehouse rocked it too with meatballs and lamb sausage...

As did Autentica with its bay scallops on tortillas with green chile sauce...

It wasn't just memorable because it was one of the last things I ate at Taste. Bluehour's smoked pork sausage with frissee was awesome.

Tyler's favorite at Taste of the Nation from Jory at the Allison -- crispy pork belly, pickled ramps and truffle apple salad.

Get a little closer...

Share Our Strength’s Taste of the Nation

Oregon Distillery Month: Oregon Distillers Guild Tasting

October 16th, 2009
Rogue Distillery gave me this photo a couple years ago to use with a story about local spirits. They're one of many distilleries that will be sampling their wares at the Edgfield this Sat. from 1-4pm.

Rogue Distillery gave me this photo a couple years ago to use with a story about local spirits. They're one of many distilleries that will be sampling their wares at the Edgfield this Sat. from 1-4pm.

So apparently I’m all about last minute or after-the-fact posts lately. Life has been a little busier than usual which is why it’s Friday and I’m just now telling you about an awesome event on…Saturday. Yes, tomorrow.

Here’s the scoop. The Oregon Distillers Guild is throwing its annual fall tasting tomorrow — Saturday, October 17th from 1-4pm at McMenamins Edgefield to kick off Oregon Distillery Month. Tickets are $20 and if you want one call McMenamins Edgefield at 503.669.8610 or just head on over.

A lot of local distilleries are participating and there will be more than 20 spirits to taste.

Distilleries representing include Artisan Spirits, Bendistillery, Cascade Peak Distillery, Highball Distillery, Hood River Distillers, House Spirits, Indio Spirits, Integrity Spirits, Liquid Vodka, New Deal Distillery, Rogue Spirits, McMenamins Edgefield Distillery, Sub Rosa Spirits and more.

I wrote a story about several of these distilleries a couple years ago.

According to the press release:

The Oregon Distillers Guild was the first state based craft distilling group to band together and form a Guild. The Oregon Distillers Guild formed in May of 2007 and has sponsored two bills before the Oregon Legislature; influenced policy within the Oregon Liquor Control Commission and worked with Travel Oregon and Oregon Bounty programs to promote Oregon as a destination for all things liqurious.

I’m not sure about “liqurious” but the rest sounds great.

Oregon Distillers Guild Fall Tasting
@ McMenamins Edgefield
Sat., Oct. 17th 1-4pm
tickets $20
Call 503.669.8610 or tickets
This is obviously a 21 and over event