Taste of the Nation 2014 Recap: Portland, Oregon (Sponsored Post)

Taste of the Nation was an enormous success!

As I had mentioned in my post prior to the event itself; Taste of the Nation’s purpose is to put together a fabulous evening celebrating Oregon’s Best Chefs, Winemakers, Distillers and Brewers in an effort to end childhood hunger. Proceeds from ticket sales and raffles during the event went towards Share Our Strength as well as local charities- plus at the end of the event leftovers ended up creating over 200 donated meals (and boy were those some fantastic meals)!

Now the event itself? Well first off it was an absolutely stunning and warm Portland evening; so stunning and warm that I figured I’d do the whole Aztec print summer dress and six inch wedges deal. I arrived at 5:30 PM to the Pre-Event VIP Media Soiree to pre-game with Adam Sappington’s crispy chicken lollipops and Union Gin cocktails; and of course as expected I ran into many of my favourite PDX bloggers.

VIP MEDIA PRE PARTY:

As you can see, an impeccable (ad diverse) selection of hors d’oeuvres ranging from Xocolatl de David’s lustworthy fluffernutterbutter sandwich to Pok Pok’s Khao Niaw Sangkhaya Bai Toel (sweet sticky rice with duck egg-pandan-coconut custard in banana leaves).

And as if all of the above wasn’t exciting enough…

TTHE MAIN EVENT:

Rachel from Love, Rachel ended up being my absolutely fantastic partner in crime in navigating the festive sea of culinary talent before us. Plus, she also took this pic of me with one of her darlings, Drew (that I already stole to post on my Instagram and am politely borrowing again to post on this blog):

Enjoying deliciousness from Produce Row Cafe's stand. Photo Credit: Rachel Jane Lloyd

Enjoying deliciousness from Produce Row Cafe’s stand. Photo Credit: Rachel Jane Lloyd

Did I taste everything? Well, with as many vendors that were in attendance I managed to conquer around 77% of the food, 92.5% of the distillers, 51% of the wine, and a meager 0% of the breweries (priorities…). Also, I made up those percentages but you get what I’m sayin’.

So, what were my favourites? Well, from what I did try my top five would be:

1) Departure’s Haitian pepper-stewed chicken

2) Laurelhurst Market’s Mac n Cheese w/ Tim’s Potato Chip Crust and Hot Dogs

3) Grassa: Cacio e Pepe. Simple yet impeccably done

4) Aviary: Soup Dumplings

5) Smallwares: Beef tataki with kimchi, hoisin and cilantro

Overall, it was an absolutely phenomenal and successful evening out on the town (and all for a great cause)! In fact the only mishaps of the night were that I somehow lost my new white linen blazer and then proceeded to nearly trip while coming down the stairs in my six inch wedges (both incidents may or may not have had something to do with the percentage of distilleries I tasted from).

And to cap it all of, Marisa (Margaritas in the Rain), Rebekah (PDX Food Love), Bee (The Spicy Bee) and I managed to get some SUPER cute shots together in the USNAPS photobooth:

Screen shot 2014-05-08 at 5.05.17 PM

A huge thanks to everyone who facilitated this amazing event; especially to Lisa Hill and Heather Jones- we’re lucky to live in a town full of such darling and fabulous publicists!

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