FEAST PORTLAND 2016 RECAP PART 2. THE GRAND TASTING

Last year was my first year EVER year attending feast -I know super late bloomer here. After experiencing all of the magic of eating and drinking to my heart's fill I knew I couldn't do another year sans feast. 

One of the main events, the grand tasting, is held across two days, Friday and Saturday and located within the pioneer courthouse square -a brick amphitheater within the city center. The grand tasting is an event set up to sip and sample many new-to-the-market items and many wonderful food items prepared by local chefs. This year I was given an amazing opportunity to attend as a guest blogger -which allowed me entry to both grand tasting days. Since I had attended the grand tasting the year prior I had a great idea of what to expect and even planned a strategy on how to get the most of my time at the grand tasting. 

Below are a few highlights from my time at the Grand Tasting events that from both Friday and Saturday:

FEAST PORTLAND 2016 GRAND TASTING

USA PEARS

Just like the year prior I had a good guess that there would be a tasting station with a food and wine pairing somewhere within the grand tasting, so this year I made it my mission to find it straight away. After doing a quick run-through the grand tasting I found it immediately and got to enjoy some tasty bites before the massive crowds discovered it.

Local guest Chef Doug Adams, formerly of Imperial and currently working on his proposed restaurant Bullard (opening 2017), was behind the cutting board at the USA Pears tent serving up delicious bites featuring USA PEARS. An additional wine pairing featuring wines from Chateau Ste. Michelle was also present.


DECADENT CREATIONS BAKERY

beaverton

Being the big fan of sweets I made a mad dash to find Decadent Creations Bakery as this bakery has been on my list to try. The baking gods must have known I was coming because the gals were serving up a few of my favorite flavors; pumpkin, passion fruit, and salted chocolate. For starters anything pumpkin flavored will always get my personal taste test, as does salted chocolate, and passion fruit so slap me a little because I couldn't believe my eyes when I noticed three of the four items they were featuring were among my favorite taste profiles.

Decadent Creations' drunken pumpkin cake was by far my favorite bit of the entire grand tasting. The cake was super moist with a wonderful balance of pumpkin spice, a rum cinnamon ganache layer, and a thick creamy dollop of hazelnut meringue buttercream. This little bite was heaven. I may have had a few extra pieces, more than my share as it was so darn good!


DRY SPARKLING

I've been a big fan of DRY SPARKLING for years, the beverages are fizzy, and delightfully light in flavor. 


BON APPETIT TENT

For two days there were so many goodies featured under this tent, Olympia Provisions featured a beautiful array of their finest charcuterie, Bee Local Honey and Jacobsen Salt Co. shared bites highlighted by their flavor enhancing salt and honey, Yogi Tea served up hot tea, and Wolf Gourmet featured grilled chicken tacos and roasted plum and ricotta tartine with their high-performance countertop items.


OREGON FRUIT PRODUCTS

Oregon Fruit Products featured three wonderful items: crispy pork belly bites topped with black berry gastrique and whipped herb goat cheese on a bed of endive and frisee, and vanilla bean wanna cotta topped with dark sweet cherries  poached in oregon pinot noir and topped with salted pistachios, aside from the eats Oregon Fruit Products was also serving up refreshing strawberry lemonades with their pourable fruit.


OREGON CHEESE GULID

The Oregon Cheese Guild featured four local artisan cheeses, chubut wedge, chèvre with cajeta drizzle on a apple chip, fiesta cheesorio in a cup, and brindisi squares.


RANGER CHOCOLATE


WILLIAMS-SONOMA + JACOBSEN SALT CO.

I hope you all had a chance to get you hands on any of the dishes that came off this table. Both days at the Grand Tasting featured back to back chef demos from our very own local chef talent and chefs across the nation.

Guest Chef Gregory Gourdet of portland's Departure restaurant and finalist on Top Chef behind the cutting board prepping his dish for his upcoming demonstration time slot. 

Local Chef Peter Cho of Han Oak helping being the scenes at saturday's grand tasting


SALT & STRAW

Hello, a Salt & Straw cart and no line?! You bet I got in the non-existent line and ordered up three mini scoops of every flavor I was curious about, the tom douglas triple coconut cream pie, the white toast and apple butter, and the strawberry honey balsamic with black pepper!


NECTAR CREEK MEAD

I cannot wait to get my hands on some more of that Waggle Mead, a lightly carbonated and fermented honey adult beverage. 


NATURE'S PATH

Nature's path featured two yummy dishes, a vegan raspberry eton mess with coconut cream, crushed meringue, raspberry and chia granola, and crispy avocado tacos with panko bread, pumpkin flax, granola, avocado and tahini.


PORTLAND SANGRIA

Portland Sangria is a spritzy blend of rose and juice in a can


ADDITIONAL FEAST BITES


MY FEAST STRATEGY

My biggest tip for all Feast main events: find the biggest plate that you can and save, this will be your tray during the remainder of the event. I figured out this method last year when I recieved an alaska airlines tray, that tray was put to great use during my first feast weekend but since I didn't keep the tray from last year I scooped up this plate and used it during the entire event. Having this plate helped me gather more than one bite at a time which meant I was able to stay in lines longer while I stocked up on bites. It made taking the time to enjoy my food loot much more enjoyable as I was able to sit and enjoy it all at once.


full disclosure: i was kindly provided a Feast 2016 pass that included entry to the grand tasting and media events in exchange for media coverage. all opinions expressed are my own.


FEAST PORTLAND 2016 COUNTDOWN. TICKETS STILL AVAILABLE

13 MORE DAYS UNTIL FEAST KICK OFF!

You guys! We are so close to my favorite weekend in September, a weekend I've been planning my life around. Of course this isn't just any weekend, it's FEAST weekend, four days of eating, drinking, hands-on classes, dinners, tasting panels, main and fun-sized events all while meeting our foodie crushes, finding new food affairs, and most importantly feasting to put an end to childhood hunger. 

Last year I attended two main events: the Friday Night Market presented by USA Pears, and Saturday's Oregon Grand Bounty; both events left me wanting more! Scroll down to the very bottom to catch my recap of last years events!


WHAT IS FEAST? 

Feast is not a typical half day food festival, but rather a four day gastronomous affair filled with numerous workshops, hands-on classes, tasting panels, private dinners, and expansive main events for every food lover's dream. Not only is there food to be hand, but it's lots of "Portland" food which we all know is ranked really high among the nation we even have some of our own talented well known chef's cooking our of Portland, Oregon, how can you love food, live here, and not become a foodie?

Last year's 2015 feast was the first year i attended any of the events and let me begin by shaming myself and admitting that i had never been to any of the years prior...

from the moment i walked in to friday nights nigh market i was in heaven. just imagine 1 part harry potter welcoming feast, 1 part of every Bon Appetit's drool worthy layouts and covers, 1 dash of all of the magic that is a full thanksgiving dinner spread, a pinch of the surprise happiness you feel when someone brings in a fresh dozen of your favorite donuts to work, and 2 parts of all of the happiness you feel when you receive a gift certificate to one of your favorite dinner spots. that is what feast is to me!

if you love food, are an adventurous eater and follow the restaurant scene closer than the presidential elections than feast is the event for you. my childhood music crush could be in town for a secret show at mississippi studios and i would be in line at whole foods to have my cookbook signed by Yotam Ottolenghi or John Gorham, because that is where food is on my list of life priorities.

as soon as tickets went live for feast 2016 i immediately snagged tickets to Oregonian Media Group SMOKED! presented by Tillamook, and Brunch Village presented by Whole Foods. these two events were ones i did not attend the year prior and i made a vow to go this year. thankfully i was quick on the draw and had my strategy in place because SMOKED! sold out within hours and Brunch village wasn't far behind to sell out.  

aside from the above events, i was granted a feast 2016 blogger's pass for the following events: Friday and Saturday Grand Tasting, USA Pears Night Market present by Alaksa Airlines and a  Drink Tank presented by Imbibe tasting panel. i couldn't be more excited to be at two new-to-me main events this year as an attendee and to attend those listed above as a blogger, it certainly feels like a honor to help promote something i am already passionate about!

be sure to follow along on my social media trails:

i'll be running around four main events this year, plus a drink tank; be sure to follow along on my social media trails: instagram: @Maxenestrail and twitter: @Mytrailofcrumbs and follow hashtag: #maxeneatfeastpdx to sort out my coverage amongst the many other fabulous bloggers!

 


scenes from Friday Night Market 2015


scenes from Saturday Oregon Grand Tasting 2015

FEAST GRAND TASTING 2015

TICKETS STILL AVAILABLE FOR:


FRIDAY:

SATURDAY:



BANANA CREAM PIE WITH SALTED BOURBON CARAMEL SAUCE

BANANA CREAM PIE WITH SALTED BOURBON CARAMEL SAUCE

Creamy, sweet, smooth, salty, and crunchy. The Banana Cream Pie of your dreams.

I found this recipe at Bon Appetit's online archive and knew this was the pie for me to make! Although I have a lot of trust for BA there have been a few recipes where steps were left out, ingredients were left not used, and some instances where I was left unsure if my result was just how it was supposed to be? This recipe was one of those instances. This pie took me far too long to make as I completely killed two parts of the recipe which resulted in two extra days of cooking, and of course, cooling. Since I hold down a full-time day job I was not able to keep baking late into the night or first thing in the morning. I made the crust one night, the filling the other which didn't turn out on the first try. By the time I had everything baked and in order to complete assembly the pie the bananas had gone too ripe for my liking. So, overall, this pie took almost a week to complete and too many trips to the emergency store to complete.

SALTED BOURBON BANANA CREAM PIE, RECIPE VIA BON APPETIT
SALTED BOURBON BANANA CREAM PIE
HOMEMADE SALTED BOURBON CARAMEL

HOMEMADE SALTED BOURBON CARAMEL

PIE ASSEMPLY TIME

PIE ASSEMPLY TIME

SALTED BOURBON BANANA CREAM PIE

DIRECTIONS:

Peanut shortbread crust:

1 1/4 C. unsalted, dry-roasted peanuts

1/2 C. all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp. kosher salt

1/4 tsp. baking soda

1/4 C. packed light brown sugar

1/4 C. sugar

2 TBSP. (1/4 stick)  unsalted butter, room temp

1 large egg yolk

1/4 tsp. vanilla extract

Vanilla pastry cream:

2 C. whole milk

3/4 C. heavy cream, (with 1/4 C. at room temp)*

1/2 C. sugar

3 Tbsp cornstarch

2 tbsp all-purpose flour

1/4 tsp kosher salt

5 large egg yolks

1/4 C. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2" cubes

1 tsp vanilla extract

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

INGREDIENTS:

Peanut crust directions:

preheat oven to 350. 

pulse peanuts in a food processor until coarsely ground. transfer 1/4 C. of ground nuts to a small bowl; cover and set aside for garnish. pulse remaining peanuts until peanut butter forms, about 2 minutes.

whisk flour, salt, and baking soda in a medium bowl. using an electric mixer, beat both sugars, peanut butter, and butter until well combined and mixture resembles wet sand, 2-3 minutes. beat in egg yolk and vanilla, occasionally scraping down the sides of bowl, until well blended, about 3 minutes (mixture will be clumpy). gradually add the dry ingredients; beat just to combine (do not over mix). gather dough with your hands, place in pie dish, press evenly onto bottom and up sides of dish. bake until edges are deep golden brown, 15-17 minutes. let cool on a wire rack. can be made 2 days ahead. cover tightly.

Vanilla cream directions:

bring milk and cream to a simmer in a medium saucepan. meanwhile, whisk sugar, cornstarch, flour, and salt in a large mixing bowl. add egg yolks; whisk until smooth (mixture will be very thick). whisking consistently, gradually add milk to the yolk mixture. return to saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, whisking constantly, until thick, 2-3 minutes. (it took me about 7 minutes to get there). transfer to a blender with butter and vanilla. puree until smooth, 1-2 minutes. transfer to a medium bowl; press plastic wrap directly onto surface of pastry cream. chill until set, at least 2 hours. can be made 2 days ahead.

salty bourbon caramel directions:

stir sugar, 1 tablespoon bourbon, corn syrup, and 1 tablespoon water in a medium deep saucepan over medium-low heat, bring to a boil without stirring, and cook, occasionally swirling pan and brushing down sides with a wet pastry brush, until sugar is deep amber in color, 6-8 minutes. remove caramel from heat; whisky in remaining 1/4 cup of cream (*i find that this works best at room temp), butter, and salt (mixture will bubble vigorously). let cool for 5 minutes; whisk in remaining 1/2 tablespoon bourbon and vanilla. let bourbon caramel cool slightly. can be made ahead. 

Cream:

using an electric mixer or whisk, beat 1/2 cup cream and powdered sugar until medium-stiff peaks form. cover and chill, re-whisk before serving

Assembly:

spread 1/4 cup vanilla pastry cream evenly over bottom of peanut crust. slice bananas into 1/4" thick rounds. layer half of the bananas over pastry cream. top with 1 1/2cups pastry cream. arrange remaining bananas over; top bananas with remaining pastry cream. garnish with whipped cream, and reserved ground peanuts. serve with room temperature bourbon caramel. 

 

ORIGINAL RECIPE FOUND HERE


SALTED BOURBON CARAMEL BANANA CREAM PIE
SALTED BOURBON CARAMEL BANANA CREAM PIE

BUEN PROVECHO!

FEAST PORTLAND 2015: NIGHT MARKET

MY OH MY.

I am currently on my third day of post-FEAST shenanigans and I have yet to get off this amazing food high. Someone should pull me back to earth because I could just live up here if it was possible.

FEAST NIGHT MARKET 2015. SEPTEMBER, 18TH 2015

Friday night was a feast for the eyes, and a power house to energize all wagging tongues. The night market was by far the best food event I have ever been to.  From the moment I walked into USE PEARS NIGHT MARKET I knew this was everything my food loving little heart had been waiting for.

Choosing where to start was the hardest part, to the sun glared left was my dear friend John Gorham of Toro Bravo so I bee lined for his table where he was serving up cups of tomato consomme with a touch of absinthe, and a skewer of anchovy stuffed olives, house cured chorizo, octopus, and a pickled pepper (Okay, so we're not really friends, but I feel like we would be).

my husband and my homie; aka the one who follows all of my crazy ideas.

maxenestrailofcrumbs at feast.
feast portland night market 2015

FEAST, WHERE YOUR BEST FACE IS ONE FULL OF FOODS.

maxene's trail of crumbs at feast

MEI LIN, top chef season 12 winner, serving up pork belly pate egg rolls with fragrant micro greens.

ps. check how fab mei lin looks in the mists of serving the masses at the night market.

DESCHUTES BREWERY even they got in on the food action and served up a savory cream puff to pair up with their porter and ira.

maxenes trail of crumbs at feast.

REYKA VODKA & the reyka fall mule, perfect description for their ginger cider tasting cocktail, tasted like a typical leaf littered pacific northwest fall day.

reyka vodka

MILAGRO TEQUILLA served up two ways, I chose the hoppy miracle margarita and was happy bout it

feast portland night market 2015

milagro tequila

maxenes trail of crumbs at feast.
09-18 feast 1 (73).JPG

ROLF AND DAUGHTERS, #3 on bon appetit's the hot 10: best new restaurants in america 2013 

rolf and daughters

For three solid hours I ate and drank my happy little heart around north america -until I was told to go home.

FEAST NIGHT MARKET HIGHLIGHTS:

  • The celebrities, top chef contestants, and locals; Doug Adams and Gregory Gourdet, and even this previous season's top chef winner; Mai Lin
  • Bon Appetite's hot 10 winners of hot new restaurants in america; 2013's #3 Rolf and Daughters, and  #4 Fat rice. so fun to see these people I've read about in the past.

Previous and New Feast coverage below: