Last night I attended the Northwest Food and Wine Festival hosted at the DoubleTree Inn at the Lloyd Center in Portland, Oregon. Featuring hundreds of different wines from Washington and Oregon along with 50 restaurants best finger foods, the festival buzzed with happy sippers.
Roaming the aisles of wine and food merchants, I scooped out the company before excitingly jumping in with a splash of Carton Cellar’s Pinot Gris, a crisp, dry Gris with a lovely minerality and bright citrus. A delicious start to a night that was filled with tantalizing and varied flavors that took over every corner of my month.
A few of my favorites from the night include:
Poured by the wine maker, who looked like he just walked out of the vineyards in a hat, jeans and work button up, J. Scott ‘s Grenache was a delicious and smooth red wine with a light blackberry aroma like the first hot week of August along the river. Based out of Eugene, Oregon, J. Scott is a small boutique wine producer blending handcrafted batches of Oregon wines.
The only bottle of wine that we purchased from the festival was a deep, fruity Sangiovese by Tesoaria. Smooth on the tongue but not short in flavor, this Italian style red wine abounded with bright cherry and a floral nose. Plus never doubt the influence of a knowledgeable and personable pourer. Jay Schmidt, the winery’s proprietor greeted us like best friends and spoke openly about the wines. We had a fantastic time hanging out later in the night and swapping wine suggestions. Tesoaria’s home soil is in Roseburg, Oregon.
Another Eugene area winery representing with wonderful wines, Chateau Lorane sampled three fantastic wines at the festival. A light, fruity red with a smooth & silky finish, Chateau Lorane’s Counoise surprised even my wine saturated mouth. With an alluring fragrance and amazing drinkability, this is a wine I would most definitely buy and drink regularly.
Beyond the wine, the NW Food and Wine Festival also featured a wide selection of vodka, gin, whiskey and some more unique liquors like Pisco. From a fresh, herby gins to Cofia Hazelnut Espresso vodka by Bend Distillery and Trillium Absinthe by Integrity Spirits with a refreshing licorice flavor, the festival had a little bit of everything for guests to sample – and a lot a bit of Pate. After sampling about five different varieties of pate, which before this night I had never had before, I found out that the mushy, meat mixture was the food competition piece for the festival. Other noteworthy food items included a thinly slight beef open face sandwich with lamb meatball and a blue cheese sample topped with nuts and drizzled with honey.