Portland’s Best Bottles to Give and Get: My 2016 Boozy Gift Guide!
All the details on the best booze Oregon has to offer. Give it to your friends or yourself!
Now that it’s been four whole days since the end of Feast Portland, I’ve digested (ha!) it all and I think I’m ready to make a big verdict.
Smoked was the best event at Feast.
That’s a pretty big call coming from me, a person who a) LOVES brunch and Brunch Village (I still love it and it’s still my favorite, but I also think there’s a difference between “favorite” and “best”), and b) is not even that much of a meat person.
So here’s why I feel that way, with a few of my favorite photos from the event.
1) The venue was *perfect.* If you don’t love The Fields Park, your heart is probably made of stone. The round patch of perfect green grass surrounded by tall buildings, blue skies and bridges reminds me of a snow globe. Add that to the fires from the grills and the twinkling lights, and you’ve got a beautiful evening event. The size was also just perfect. There was plenty of room to walk around or sit down, but it didn’t feel spread out.
2) Duh, the concept. The theme of smoked meats is perfectly on trend and was executed to a T. We ate everything from smoked oysters to smoked ribs to paella and it was heavenly!
3) Right ratio of booze to food. I think it’s rare to attend a big event where this is executed so well. It’s not just about the volume of drinks vs. food, it’s the number of stations, the size of the pours, etc. At Smoked, we received small pours of wine but not “tasters” – it must have been about 1-2 oz. per pour. This allowed you to actually carry that drink around for a while rather than finish it before you got your next plate of food.
4) Sheer talent. It was so great to see chefs from Portland and beyond really bring it for this event! The other events I attended were also amazing. But I can’t talk about the event without talking about the food!
Here’s a few of my favorite shots from the event:
This was the sight that greeted me upon entering: Tons and tons of beautiful mushrooms on the grill alongside some great-looking steaks. It was fun to see everyone get so creative with what they were putting on the grill.
Speaking of… these smoked oysters were amazing! They collected the shells in a little cigar box… nice touch 🙂
Chef Adam Sappington’s dish was a grilled tomahawk chop basted in charred tomato and served with a grilled sweet corn and chili pepper slaw. My favorite of the night!
A close second: Paul Kahan (of Publican in Chicago)’s grilled beef tongue with smoked salmon roe and a calabrian chile aioli. It’s gorgeous, too!
HELLO, giant paella pan. Don’t you belong in my kitchen? (Actually I might not be able to get it in the door).
And one last one… as darkness fell, the fires became even prettier. This was a great night! I hope Team Feast continues this event, and I think next year, it will sell out even faster than it did this year!