If you are Wiccan, you already have Autumn Equinox celebrations covered—a little light meditation followed by worshipping Pomona the goddess of fruit trees, reclaiming your inner crone, and holding a spiral dance. But the rest of us could also use something sensationally entertaining on this most holiest of late September days, and that sensational something has been conjured in ways true foodlovers can only dream of—behold, FEAST PORTLAND!*
(For the full effect, please shout those last two words while imagining sequin-draped Feast founders Mike Thelin and Carrie Welch leaping out of a giant Oregon product-filled cornucopia and then dancing a vigorous spiral dance/rhumba with chefs Gregory Gourdet and Cathy Whims.)
For this year’s Autumn Equinox falls smack in the middle of Portland’s brand spanking new Feast Portland, four days of unabashedly foodcentric going-ons the likes of which our notoriously hungry city has never seen before. From Thursday, Sept. 20th – Sunday, Sept. 23rd, Feasters from both near and far will throw themselves stomachlong into a fastidiously-curated festival filled with highlights like:
*Prolific writer/author/picnicmaster Mark Bittman speaking at the Schnitz
*A “Sandwich Invitational” pairing the creations of 15 sandwich wizards with craft beers
*Coffee, beer, wine, saké and gin ‘n juice classes hosted by Bon Appetít magazine editors and local experts
*A Pork & Pinot pairing marrying Oregon charcuterie and Oregon wines
*An exotic global street food-inspired Night Market at the Ecotrust Building
*Locally-led pretzel, root vegetable, rustic fruit desserts, vegetarian Mexican food & butchery classes
*Dinner series cooked up by divine kitchen duos like Nancy Silverton & Hiro Sone, April Bloomfield & Jenn Louis, and Vitaly Paley & Chris Cosentino
*A 50-mile Sauvie Island-skimming bike ride hosted by three Chris’s (DiMinno, King, & Cosentino) and one Jason (French)
*A home bartending demo by the delicious and very good-looking team of Jeffrey Morgenthaler and Kristen Murray
*A “High Comfort” comfort food showcase involving nearly 20 well-known chefs and a Dungeness crab Reuben
*A local chocolatier-choked seminar and tasting entitled “Chocolate City, USA” (enough said)
*And so many more, I have to stop listing them, or I’m going to need another lunch
If you have specific passions, by all means scoop up tickets to whichever specialized seminars, demos and tastings will enrich your interests and allow you to rub love handles with your people, be they chocolate geeks (see you there), or brewers of the bizarre. See entire schedule here>>
Or, if your foodlust runs a bit more general, like basically everything edible, your happy place is one of the big grazefests, like the Sandwich Invitational, Night Market, High Comfort, or Friday and Saturday’s Oregon Bounty Grand Tasting—don’t be surprised when your stomach bursts out crying with happiness when it sees Pioneer Courthouse Square transformed into a dazzling regional food fest filled with dozens of culinary artisans, wineries, breweries and tastemakers of all types, all there for your feasting pleasure.
So take ten, grab a bar of chocolate, and peruse the ever-growing Feast lineup here–if you see something you like, grab it, because tickets are dwindling. And if you’re feeling lucky, head over to the Under The Table Facebook page and tell us all which Feast event most tickles your fancy, and you could win a pair of tickets to the Oregon Bounty Grand Tasting on Saturday, Sept. 22, from 12-4pm. Oh my! (Winner will be announced in this Friday morning’s Table Scraps newsletter, so make sure you’re signed up.)
Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go hit a few Back To School sales for baggy, empire waisted, and elastic waistbanded outfits in wine spill-resistant colors, in preparation for my Autumn Equinox celebrations.
*Caps mine, because I really think the occasion called for them.