I’m so excited to bring you the second installment of Feast Portland. In case you missed it be sure to check out Feast Portland: September 17th, 2015 which was day one of the event. You’ll quickly see why I’ve needed to divide this series into four posts. The amount of photos I have to share with you are insane. Trust me, I’ve cut them down as much as I possibly can but there was TOO much amazingness that I needed to share just about all of them with you. If you stick it out through the entire post, bless you. I will never tire at looking at these beautiful scenes over and over again. The memories will last a lifetime.
Let’s get to the day shall we? There’s lots of fun in store – I can’t wait to share! After giving Steve the initial tour of Portland the day before and spending our free day mostly on NW 23rd we were excited to begin the official Feast activities. I slept like a baby and woke up with an extra pep in my step in anticipation for the day ahead. About a month leading up to Feast I would get various invites to welcome parties, happy hours and special events. When I got the email titled FEAST PORTLAND INVITE: Eat Sleep Burn I almost couldn’t RSVP fast enough I was so delighted:
Three 45-minute rides are available at 7 AM / 8:15 AM / 9:30 AM with light fare and local beverages available after each 45-minute ride. Select your ride. Feel the Burn. Enjoy the View.
BurnCycle’s signature 45-minute full-body spin class incorporates drills to target your upper body, obliques and core, while using a stationary bike as a vehicle for low impact, high intensity interval training. With the music as our inspiration and instructors who live to motivate, it’s like going to the best dance club in Portland – with a life coach.”
I mean, with an invitation like that, wouldn’t YOU be excited to? Um pretty much YEAH. I will say that after an extremely long day before there was the smallest bit of regret that I had RSVP’d for an event so early in the morning. That is. Until I stepped foot on the rooftop. I had suited up in my workout gear and made my way across the city to the Hotel deLuxe on what was quite possibly one of the most breathtaking mornings. As soon as the cool breeze hit my face with the first step outside of the Hotel Modera where we were staying I immediately felt happy to be alive. I kid you not I get goosebumps thinking about this activity. Granted, I hadn’t worked out in a while and so I wasn’t entirely certain how I would handle the 45 minutes. I arrived a few minutes early and checked out the:
TOAST BAR presented by Gracie’s Restaurant featuring Dave’s Killer Bread, Jacobsen Salt and Bee Local
BLOODY MARY BAR presented by House Spirits and Bull in China
CHAMPAGNE poured by Veuve Clicquot
WATER and TEA honey water by Bee Local, small batch tea by Smith Teamaker
It was so fun to see the sponsors eager to be a part of the morning. I grabbed my water bottle, got my cycling shoes, and snapped some photos before the burn. The energy was high. The music was provoking. The breeze was subtle. The view was vast. I hopped on my bike for the 8:15 ride that I had chosen. The ride was instructed by Stephanie (@stephworth) and accompanied by Lianne. I had NO idea what I was in for. I tell you what, I was told beforehand that Stephanie was going to capture my soul and THAT ladies and gentlemen she did. Words can’t really sum up what I experienced in that hour on that bike. It was an experience for so many reasons I will remember for the rest of my life. It was emotional. An experience that I will never ever forget. One of the most unbelievable ways to kick off Feast.
After my killer workout, why wouldn’t I stop by Blue Star Doughnuts? I mean it only makes sense that I would burn the most ridiculous amount of calories and then head immediately to eat them right? Hear me out. There isn’t a Blue Star anywhere remotely close to where I live. My mission for the weekend was to be sure and have one of every doughnut I could ever want. And that I did. For this day’s visit I picked up a Cinnamon Sugar, Blackberry Compote w/Peanut Butter Powder, and Contreau Creme Brulee (which I must say wasn’t my favorite). The other two of course were spot on and didn’t disappoint. Don’t judge me for my love of Blue Star. If you’ve never had one you just wouldn’t understand. If you have had the pleasure of having one: you get me.
Blue Star Doughnuts
3549 SE Hawthorne Blvd.
Portland, OR 97214
Every Day: 8am – 8pm or out
Now that I’ve finally made it to the meat of the weekend, lets break down exactly what it was that I was attending. “Bon Appétit Presents Feast Portland: A Celebration of Oregon Bounty is the Pacific Northwest’s flagship food and drink festival, capturing the current energy and enthusiasm driving America’s food revolution. The four-day festival founded in 2012 by Mike Thelin and Carrie Welch showcases local culinary talent and Pacific Northwest ingredients alongside internationally recognized chefs, culinary professionals and industry leaders. Feast Portland is also a festival with a mission, donating its net proceeds towards ending childhood hunger in Oregon and across the country through Partners for a Hunger-Free Oregon and No Kid Hungry. Having just completed its fourth year, September 17-20 2015, Feast Portland has been called “the best food festival in the country” by Thrillist National, recognized by local and national media alike, including Zagat, The Daily Meal, Serious Eats, Eater National , Wall Street Journal, Food Republic, New York Post, Forbes and The Oregonian, and named among Fodor’s Travel North America’s Top 15 Food Festivals for being “done to such perfection you’d think one of the Pacific Coast’s biggest-catch food events was in its 30th year.”
The Oregon Bounty Grand Tasting Presented By Alaska Airlines was from 1:00-5:00. We got there shortly after 1:00 and already the crowds were massive. So what’s OGBT?
Pioneer Courthouse Square
701 SW 6th Ave,
Portland, OR 97204
The Grand Tasting is the festival’s grandest mash-up of artisans and edibles showcasing the incredible ingredients of the Pacific Northwest and beyond. At Feast Portland’s premiere daytime event, eat and drink your way through a culinary road map of Oregon’s food-craft culture, with stopovers at berry pies, artisan cheeses, hand-crafted chocolates, a who’s who of 30-plus top wineries, more than a dozen breweries, Oregon ciders plus world-class showings, samplings and gadgetry by some of the most important names in the food world – from Williams-Sonoma to Breville. You’ll experience how Feast transforms Portland’s “living room”– Pioneer Courthouse Square – into Portland’s “dining room” for two days in the heart of downtown. Whether you’re an ingredient-sniffing novice or a devoted local-vore, no other event better captures the taste of fun, Portland-style.
I honestly thought I was going to need to be rolled right out of there. Elliot’s Adult Nut Butters (serving up a taste of their Harissa Cashew Butter & Espresso Nib Peanut Butter), Nature’s Path (serving a Flax Plus Pumpkin Granola Coconut Pudding that was to die for!!), and Tillamook & Breville USA (serving a Truffled Griddle Cheese Sandwich with Beet Soup that knocked my socks off!) were a few of my favorite tastes. I also got to meet the incredibly kind Irvin Lin of Eat The Love in person who had graciously filled me in on so many details leading up to this big weekend (from his years past experience).
A highlight indeed was on the Feast Culinary Stage with a really fun interactive experience of listening to a panel discussion with culinary experts and Carrie Welsh (who founded the four-day festival) leading the discussion. As many of your are, I’m a big fan of The Food Network and getting to hear from and meeting Duff Goldman who is best known as the Ace of Cakes was such a fun experience. Additionally, we each got to have a signature cupcake that he made specifically for Feast. It was DELICIOUS!
After closing down the event we rested up and freshened up for the evening. We were originally hoping to go to Pok Pok for dinner which is known to be the best Thai food in Portland, but after seeing the menu we didn’t recognize or fall in love with any of the descriptions (don’t judge) so we walked the street to see what else we could find. Steve has this Indian food radar built in him that no matter what part of the country we go to I just can’t shake it. Thankfully I love it as well so I wasn’t too disappointed when we stumbled upon the coolest restaurant.
It was the most fun place to stumble upon. While I’m a crazy planner and love to have everything down to the minute planned and know exactly when and where to go everywhere – it’s nice occasionally to just let our feet be our guide. Paid off! With a line out the door we knew we were going to be in for a treat. On one side of the restaurant there was a little Indian market. You better believe we picked up some Tikka Masala spice. Cannot wait to use it! For street food we ordered Bhel Puri which is ‘a refreshing snack of potatoes, vegetables, onion, cilantro, peanuts, spices and puffed rice with green and tamarind chutneys’. We figured this was going to be similar to samosas which we LOVE! We also ordered a small plate of Paneer Makhani which is ‘house made paneer in a rich and creamy tomato and cashew curry served with saffron rice. We were hoping this would be similar to a dish we commonly get at our favorite Indian restaurant. Lastly we got one of the Thali Meals of Dal and Coconut Curry which is ‘coconut milk and simmered lentil curry with seasonal vegetables served with saffron rice.’ The meal came with sambar (vegetable, tamarind and pigeon pea stew), dal (lentils simmered with spices), raita (yogurt with cucumber and cilantro), paratha (layered Indian flatbread with ghee) & green chutney. It was all delicious! Different than what we are used to, but delicious none the less. I couldn’t eat too much, as I was still full from the OGBT…if you can imagine.
The night was absolutely gorgeous and after dinner we weren’t quite ready to head back to the hotel, so we walked up and down the street. We stumbled upon THE coolest food cart pod I’ve ever seen. It was almost like we walked right onto a movie set. While we weren’t anywhere near needing to eat any food (and we didn’t, relax, we have some boundaries) we walked around the fun ambiance and marveled at just how quaint this little corner of the world was. This fun little discovery was the perfect addition to [#operationmovetoportland]!
Tidbit Food Farm Garden
SE 28th Place & Division Street
Portland, OR 97202
OF COURSE when there’s a Salt & Straw location you just don’t pass up that opportunity. It’s like Blue Star Doughnuts. It’s a must. Plus I’ve heard there’s a second stomach for desserts. So we made our way, stood in line, and because we had tasted many of the flavors the day before I knew exactly what I wanted! Honey Lavender baby. What a perfectly balanced, wonderfully sweet, subtly aromatic and delectable flavor combination. Worth every bite. Even if I didn’t have room for it in the first place (paying for that now of course, but it was WELL worth it!).
Salt & Straw
3345 SE Division St.
Open 11am-11pm daily
Day two was a major win. We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves to the max and slept like babies as soon as our heads hit the pillow. Day three was another full day of adventure, food and great memories that I can’t wait to share with you! Stay tuned.
A very special thank you to Feast Portland and Travel Oregon for providing travel and hotel accommodations as well as a blogger pass to the 2015 Feast Portland Event. Though flight, hotel and blogger pass were provided complimentary, I was not monetarily compensated for this post. As always, all opinions are my own.