Posts for April, 2012

April 27, 2012

Get Outta Town: Eugene

Here in Portland, we live in a dreamy little green bubble, our days filled with taking long leisurely walks through lush urban parks, sipping pear brandy toddies in cozy gastropubs, shopping for the latest in organic fleece neckties, and spending all our money at the new restaurants that continue to propagate like Spanish Fly-soused old rabbits who live in a shoe.

But sometimes, even though we live in Utopia, it’s nice to get outta town, for many reasons. Travel opens our minds and teaches us new things about ourselves, like how we will react when we accidentally board a flight to Sacramento instead of Santa Fe, or an unattractive married Italian man cops an unwelcome feel, or a rabid wolverine challenges our sovereignty over Campsite 27. And there’s nothing like packing a weekend-sized suitcase to teach you about priorities (monogrammed champagne glasses NOT optional), and what exactly we consider “essential” in life (eight pairs of shoes and two kinds of hair conditioner, check).

I’ve been getting out of town more, exploring fun destinations within a butt-ache’s-distance of Portland (A butt-ache’s distance is how long you can sit in a Honda CR-V or on a plane before you develop an unpleasant butt-ache. Three to five hours, is my best scientific guesstimate.) and bringing back some travel tips for you, so that if you too decide to get outta town, you can eat, drink, shop, sightsee and sleep in rabid wolverine-free comfort.* Read full story »

April 25, 2012

Dundee Hills Passport Pointers

I will take it as a compliment that at the last winery where I flashed my Dundee Hills Passport this week, the girl behind the tasting room bar commented, “Looks like you got some mileage out of that.”

But really, after a few days of being put through its paces, it’s only fair that my passport should have been wrinkled, torn, battered, and stained with chocolate, chévre, and pinot rings. Sporting 32 participating Dundee Hills wineries, three inns, two restaurants, a market and a cooking school, this small burgundy booklet represents good times to be had, and this is your last weekend to get some mileage out of yours. Read full story »

April 24, 2012

Farmers’ Markets Blooming Like Spring Love

I believe, because Wiki told me so, that it was Lord Tennyson who wrote “In the Spring a young man’s fancy lightly turns to thoughts of love.” He was probably right, but what’s even better than love in the spring? Farmers’ markets in the spring. Because really, does love have anything on just-picked spring asparagus? No. Well, maybe. Mmm….No. Read full story »

April 20, 2012

Taste of the Nation Needs You!

Most of us want to be more philanthropic, but we have so many excuses and distractions—money is tight, time is scarce, we don’t look good in orange vests, etc. Well, here’s a quick, easy, fun AND delicious way to help Oregon’s hungry children at my favorite food event of the year—Share Our Strength’s Taste of the Nation, coming up soon on May 8 at JELD-WEN Field. Read full story »

April 18, 2012

Saint Cupcake’s TOP MOM Mother’s Day Breakfast Giveaway

Sometimes there is a profound rift between what Mom wants for Mother’s Day (a spa week…in Mauritius…alone) and what Mom gets for Mother’s Day (pancake batter on the ceiling and eggshells in the coffee served on her 6am breakfast tray). Well, Saint Cupcake is here to negotiate a compromise with their Top Mom Mother’s Day Breakfast Giveaway. Read full story »

April 17, 2012

Be Kind, Unwine’d

We all have different ways to unwind. Some people go for a run, some people meditate, some people work in their garden, and some people buy one of everything in the Little T bakery case and then eat it all in bed while watching Bridesmaids for the 43rd time. To each their own. But on April 29th, we can all unify in our method, at the Unwine’d, Celebrate Oregon Wine event. Because what’s more relaxing than a wine festival? Read full story »

April 13, 2012

Win Tickets To Taste Washington Portland

The upcoming second annual Taste Washington Portland is a great excuse to get to know our northern neighbor a bit better, the best way possible–over lots and lots of drinks. Because when you add 75 Washington wineries, a cherry-picked group of Portland’s finest eateries, and a beautiful, airy Pearl District event space in spring, there’s nothing less than an extremely fun time to be had. Read full story »

April 10, 2012

Friday Minibreak in Wine Country

Today, I’m going to tell you the three little words we all most want to hear: Take Friday Off. I mean, clear it with your boss first and everything, I don’t want to get anybody in trouble, but if there’s ever a Friday worth abandoning your normal workday obligations for and heading into wine country, I’d say this is it. Read full story »

April 6, 2012

Win Saké Fest PDX Tickets

Since my puny human brain is hardly sophisticated enough to catalogue the myriad of Portland’s culinary to-dos and must-attends, I file the lot of them into my beloved iPhone, which means that all day long it emits a cacaphony of beeps, burbles and buzzes–like that weird daily recurring 3pm alarm that simply reads, “Happy Hour?” (I have no recollection of setting this.) Yesterday, my phone made one of its funny noises and what would you know? It was the week-away alert for Saké Fest PDX! Read full story »

April 6, 2012

Crazy For Rhubarb

Thanks to a steady, freezing, utterly miserable rain–the likes of which we’re all completely familiar with but somehow still can’t believe is really happening to us because we sometimes really truly think that this is all just a bad cold dream and we’ll wake up at our Malibu beach house wearing J Brand cutoffs and flip flops, relieved to see Chris Pine* doing laps in our infinity pool as usual–there wasn’t much competition for shopping space at this past weekend’s Saturday Portland Farmers Market at PSU.

Read full story »

April 4, 2012

Easter Round Up: Egging You On

Easter—the official holiday of Peeps, large hollow chocolate rabbits of questionable quality, and thinking it’s funny to make small children hunt through wet, icy grass for gaudy plastic eggs filled with cheap trinkets from the dollar store. (It’s totally funny!) Read full story »

April 3, 2012

Not-So-Secret Meat at Free House

I have a food-loving friend who has a husband who is kind, thoughtful, handsome, and even occasionally dances at weddings, but does not eat meat. Therefore, when we go out for a girls’ night, she delights, nay, revels in eating what she lightheartedly, but with a serious glint in her carnivorous eye, refers to as “secret meat.” Read full story »

April 2, 2012

Prix-Fixe Brunch at Suzette

If SE Belmont Street had a brunch line seismogram, it would quiver at 14th (hello Roost banana brown bread pancakes!) and 29th (hello Accanto ricotta doughnuts!), and go ape-doody at 32nd (hello Cricket Café Bloody Gary!), 37th (hello Pine State Biscuits gravyache!) and 41st (Slappycakes, enough said), but readings in the bustling 3300 block would remain relatively sedate, with the occasional blip in the region of peaceful (haha) Utopia Cafe and mellow Circa 33. Read full story »