Celebrate the Holidays New Orleans-Style at Acadia

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It’s not often that I post a Press Release, but this one looked so yummy, I just couldn’t help myself:

November 30, 2015 ? Portland, OR ? Acadia Bistro chef/owner Seamus Foran is continuing the restaurant?s long-standing tradition of hosting Christmas Eve R?veillion Dinner and a rousing New Year?s Eve. Derived from the 18th century Creole tradition, ?r?veillon? comes from the French word for ?awakening? and refers to a late night/early morning meal served after midnight mass on Christmas Eve. Hungry families returning from church services would feast on a sumptuous meal that had been laid out in advance. Acadia has been hosting a R?veillion Dinner since 2004 and remains a popular option for diners who want to enjoy time out with family and friends, without getting the kitchen dirty.

For both evenings, the set menus consist of four courses of traditional Cajun and Creole dishes, as well as updated classics.?Acadia?s R?veillion Dinner will be served from 5:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. on Thursday, December 24th.?The cost is $40 per guest, and reservations are strongly recommended.?As the restaurant will be serving only the set menus on these evenings and seating is limited, reservations are recommended. Call (503) 249-5001 to reserve seats.

First Course (Choose One)
~ Pumpkin hushpuppies with orange horseradish marmalade?~ Louisiana style BBQ shrimp
~ Local Chanterelle Mushroom toast with Oregon truffle butter and fresh herbs
~ Crawfish deviled egg with celery root remoulade

Second Course (Choose One)
~ Apple and Arugula salad with mustard greens, kohlrabi, pecans and Ch?vre
~ Black roux Gumbo house andouille, blue crab, gulf shrimps, crawfish and okra
~ Louisiana Snappin? Turtle Soup au sherry with hard cooked egg

Entr?e Course (Choose One)
~ Braised Beef Short Ribs with horseradish gremolata and Anson?Mills grits
~ House-made Tur-Duck-Hen with Creole cornbread dressing, honey-sage gravy
~ Gulf Shrimp Madeleine with watercress and fried onion
~ Blackened LA Catfish with stewed black eyed peas and jicama-salsify slaw
~ Goat Cheese Gnocchi with brown butter fried sage, chanterelle mushrooms, toasted pumpkin seeds, and butternut squash

Dessert Course (Choose One)
~ Vanilla Bean Bread Pudding with toasted pecans and salted whiskey caramel sauce
~ Buttermilk Chocolate Layer Cake with chocolate cinnamon ganache and whip cream

?Sides for the Table ???$5/ea.
~ Pan-fried Brussels sprouts with apples and pumpkin seeds
~ Buttermilk cornbread
~ Red beans & Rice?

On Thursday, December 31st, the little bistro starts rocking again with a special New Year?s Eve multi-course dinner commencing at 5:00 p.m. until the ball drops.? The cost is $70 per guest, reservations strongly recommended.

First Course (Choose One)
~ Sweet potato-cornmeal fritters with orange- horseradish marmalade
~ Louisiana BBQ Shrimp with lemon, butter, black pepper and rosemary
~ Hedgehog mushroom & onion tartlet with house bacon, andouille and charred cipollini onion relish
~ Foie Gras Terrine cranberry apple compote and brioche ($10 supplement)

Second Course (Choose One)
~ Black Roux Gumbo Acadian with house andouille, lump Blue Crab meat, gulf shrimps, crawfish tails, okra and File
~ Salad of Winter Chicories with hard cooked egg and creole mustard vinaigrette

Entr?e Course (Choose One)
~
Filet of NY striploin with horseradish-whipped potatoes, bordelaise and Oregon truffle butter
~ Louisiana Gulf Shrimp stuffed with blue crab, wrapped in bacon with watermelon radish, citrus segment and shaved fennel
~ Louisiana Seabream, skillet bronzed with roasted squash-ricotta tartlet, pecans and clementine meuniere sauce
~ Confit of Pork Shoulder with Anson Mills grits, bourbon honey gastrique and mint gremolata
~ Goat Cheese Gnocchi with brown butter fried sage, local hedgehog mushrooms, toasted pumpkin seeds, butternut squash and sherry

Dessert (Choose One)
~ Vanilla Bean Bread Pudding with whiskey caramel sauce, pecans and sweet cream
~ Buttermilk Chocolate Cake with brandied cherries and cocoa nib tuile
~ Pecan Pie Crostata with Steens cane syrup and candied bacon ice cream

About Acadia:?Located in the Sabin/Irvington neighborhood of Portland, Acadia has been serving modern American cuisine rooted in Louisiana food traditions since 2001.? The restaurant uses locally-grown fruits, vegetables and meats, as well as exclusively wild caught seafood from the Gulf coast and Pacific Northwest.? The restaurant is located at 1303 NE Fremont St. in Portland.? For reservations, please call (503) 249-5001. ?www.acadiapdx.com.

Chaberton Siegerrebe?Don’t Say it, Just Drink it.

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chabertonIf you thought gewerztraminer was hard to pronounce, try siegerrebe. Pronounced zee-ga-rey-buh, it literally means ?victory vine? in German. Siegerrebe is the result of cross breeding between Madeleine Angevine and Gewurztraminer in the early 1900s. So, kind of a victory. Today, it is grown throughout Germany, Washington State, and British Columbia. Maybe that’s the real victory.

Siegerrebe is a delicate and aromatic grape best suited to cool climates. Though the grapes are blush colored, the pressed juice runs clear and bright. Bud break comes late and the sweet smelling fruit ripens early, making it vulnerable to birds and pests. Highly aromatic, similar to Muscat and Gewerztraminer, the finished wines tend to be lower in acidity and alcohol and have historically been used in blended white wines. Fortunately, despite this wine not being particularly well known for high quality fruit, there is an emerging trend (perhaps from wine lovers seeking something a bit different) in producing the varietally pure versions.

I remember tasting Siegerrebe for the first time many years ago at Purple Cow in Oregon and being completely dumbfounded by the sweet nose and then the bone dry wine in my mouth. Sadly, I don?t think they are still producing it. Since my visit to the Fraser Valley in British Columbia early this year, Siegerrebe has become a personal favorite of mine.

Siegerrebe might trick you into falling in love with its austere and elegant appearance, but its robust aroma and flavor profile is what will ultimately woo you. It?s these qualities that make it perfect to pair with food. It?s vibrant, clean, off-dry and yet incredibly well balanced. My advice to you?don?t be afraid of wines you can?t pronounce.

2014 Chaberton Siegerrebe:?Aromas of honeysuckle, candied apricots and lychee fruit tickle your sensations. Sipping this wine will reward your mouth with flavors of peaches, mandarin oranges, meyer lemon and a kiss of honey. The tropical flavors reveal hints of residual sugar in perfect balance with the wine?s acid.

Serve it as an apertif or with spicy prawns, thai food or strong cheeses. I paired it with Curried Cauliflower Soup (click for the recipe), which was uplifting and completely satisfying.

Roasted & Curried Cauliflower Soup

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soup2A soup that’s easy to make, comforting, satisfying and healthy? That’s one I’ll make again and again. Roasted & Curried Cauliflower Soup checks off all those boxes. Enjoy this soup with some crusty bread and a simple salad and you have a dinner that pleases guests of all ages.

The apples are?my favorite?topping, there’s something about the sweet and tart flavors that work so well against the spicy?and savory qualities of the soup. And when the apples crisp up, they have a lightness that both brightens and lifts the meal. I also love?this soup with toasted sliced almonds, caramelized onions and of course?drumroll please? bacon crumbles (go figure). All are delicious, it’s a matter of individual taste and what you have on hand.

Pair this wine with an aromatic white wine like a dry Riesling, a Gewerztraminer or my personal wine of choice, Chaberton Siegerrebe (click here for the full report).

Roasted Cauliflower Soup
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
8 20 min.
Cook Time Passive Time
30 min. 30 min.
Servings Prep Time
8 20 min.
Cook Time Passive Time
30 min. 30 min.
Roasted Cauliflower Soup
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
8 20 min.
Cook Time Passive Time
30 min. 30 min.
Servings Prep Time
8 20 min.
Cook Time Passive Time
30 min. 30 min.
Ingredients
Servings:
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400?.
  2. Place trimmed cauliflower, onion and garlic in a bag with olive oil and 2 tsp of salt, 1/2 tsp pepper and shake to coat.
  3. Place on cookie sheet lined with foil and bake for 25-30 min. or until tender and nicely browned.
  4. Heat stock, wine, water to rolling boil.
  5. Add roasted veges and spices.
  6. Reduce to medium heat and simmer for 30 min.
  7. Use immersion blender to blend until smooth.
  8. Place apple slices in a bag with oil and shake to coat.
  9. Place on foil lined cookie sheet and bake about 10 minutes at 400? until browned.
  10. Ladle into bowls, top with roasted apples and serve while hot with salad and a loaf of French bread.
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Oregon Wine Country – Thanksgiving Weekend 4-1-1

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KBP_4529-24-1763x1177If you live in Oregon, you’re probably familiar with all the winery Pre-Thanksgiving and Thanksgiving weekend Open Houses. It’s something of a yearly buzz and a harbinger of the holiday season. With so many choices, planning a wine country outing might seem more?like a game of Risk. ?But rest assured, I’m here to help you with your planning strategy. Put my experience to good use with this?insider’s guide to planning a winning?Thanksgiving wine country excursion.

Raise your glass and toast the opportunity to taste wines you might not normally get to taste.

The strategy?is actually quite simple. While the big wineries are deliciously dependable, most of them are open year-round, so you can visit them anytime. Save this outing for the wineries only open a couple times a year and those that are having their “coming out” parties.

WINERIES RARELY OPEN – BUT OPEN THANKSGIVING WEEKEND:

1. iOTA Cellars – Open just two times a year, so seize the day. Located in Amity, so a visit to Brooks new tasting room and Keeler Estate would be conveniently accessible. Lucky you!
2. Bells Up Winery?- Small boutique winery in Newberg, hmmmm, practically on the way to Argyle! How ’bout that plan???Taste their symphony of wines, but their inaugural vintage is selling out fast, so grab a bottle or two while you can.
3. Shea Wine Cellars?- Go straight to the source (in Yamhill) and discover?why so many?wineries make a Shea Vineyard wine.
4. Archer Vineyard?- The tiered decks and forever countryside views will melt your holiday stress away.
5. Leah Joregenson Cellars is pouring her wines Pre-Thanksgiving weekend on Saturday, Nov. 21st at Staver Locomotives – which means she’s right in town and you don’t even have to drive out to the valley. That means you have?no excuses. And you get to see cool trains! On Friday of?the Thanksgiving weekend, you’ll find her at the best little wine shop in Newberg, Valley Wine Merchants.

brooksargyle2NEW WINERIES/TASTING ROOMS:
1. Argyle Winery – In my opinion, ALL Oregon wine country outings should either begin or end at Argyle?with a bubbly toast. Combine their sleek and sexy?new tasting room with great wines and easy accessible along the Highway 99 corridor and you have yourself a no-brainer.
2. Domaine Roy & Fils?- Taste the inaugural vintage from Dundee’s newest winery team, Roy and Etzel.
3. Domaine Divio?- Another debut – Burgundian style wines crafted in hillsides of Newberg. Domaine Divio promised?traditional wines along with graceful valley views.
3. Dusky Goose?- This grand opening event features limited production Pinot Noir?crafted by the illustrious Lynn Penner Ash.
4. Keeler Estate?- Allow yourself to?be greeted with warmth and hospitality and feel like you never left home. With wines as stunning as the grounds, it’s a treat for all the senses.
5.?Brooks Winery – With sweeping vistas and stunning wines, you could easily spend all day here. Craft your own flights from?exceptional Pinot noir, Pinot blanc, Gewurtzraminer and 17 Rieslings. Let me say that again, so you hear me loud and clear. 17 RIESLINGS!

TASTING HOUSES: Places to taste a wide variety of limited production vino from artisan producers
1. Carlton Winemakers Studio – Andrew Rich, Dukes Family, Lavinea, Asilda Wines, Quintet, Merriman, Mad Violets, Lazy River, Bachelder Wines, Wahle, Trout Lily and Hamacher
2. Beacon Hill – Harper Voigt, WildAire Cellars
3. Southeast Wine Collective – Be thankful for?urban Thanksgivings. Wines from up-and-coming resident winemakers including Division Winemaking Company (ok, these guys are more up than coming), Fullerton Wines, Gersing Cellars, James Rahn Cellars, Laelaps Winery and Ore Winery.

Places to drink great wine and get your shopping on:
1. WillaKenzie Estate‘s Holiday Market – Taste award winning?wines while you select?thoughtful holiday gifts for all your favorite peeps.?You’ll be able to sample?tasty food items from the following local vendors: The Beautiful Pig, Briar Rose Creamery, Smitten Artisan Truffles, The Spice and Tea Exchange, the Tamale House,?Fanucchi Oils and more. Mmmmm.

Perhaps your Thanksgiving weekend tradition includes a visit to wine country. Or perhaps you’re more of a sit-on-the-couch-and-watch-sports type, or a hit-up-all-the-big-sales type, in which case I invite you to please make a new tradition. You’ll thank me.?Where ever you end up this Thanksgiving weekend, I hope you have a wonderful holiday and enjoy every precious moment! #ORthanks

*Check individual website for details, times and specific offers.

Wine Deals – For Realz

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DSC_0209When I was growing up, I think I must have heard the words “I never pay retail” almost daily. Let this be my confession, I am the daughter of a serial bargain shopper. And while I have learned to appreciate the high quality and good value you get from many expensive things, I also admit that I love a great bargain; I guess it’s in the genes. However, the word bargain rarely crosses my mind or my lips when I consider buying?wine.

The opportunity to explore Grocery Outlet‘s wine section recently proved to be a fun and eye opening experience. Honestly, I’d not really considered Grocery Outlet when purchasing?wine. Maybe it’s due to my loyalty to Oregon’s small producers (or just my inner wine snob), but I now can safely recommend a stroll through Grocery Outlet to see what treasure you might uncover.

Though you might be raising your wine hackles right now, seething with speculation, swelling with scrutiny, nestled amongst the Outlet’s racks were intriguing bottles that might just soothe your inner inner sceptic?wines like Anderson Valley pinot noir, bordeaux from France, as well as Amarone and Valipolcella from Italy. ?And since most of these wines were marked down anywhere from 30%-60% off their retail value, at worst, even if the bottle isn’t the greatest wine you ever tasted, it will likely be an enjoyable and interesting experience. I invite you to keep an open mind.

With holiday parties around the corner, you can stock up on cases for your entertaining pleasure, and not feel like you’re breaking the bank. And with a big wine sale on top of their already reduced prices (November 4-10), now’s the time to make your move. Enter to win a Grocery Outlet $25 gift certificate below.

Inventory changes all the time and the good stuff won’t stay on the shelves for long, so if you see something interesting, take a chance and snatch it up. You might just discover your next favorite everyday wine at a fraction of the cost.

The following wines will be on sale in the Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Nevada?markets:

Pine and Post Cabernet Sauvignon 2012
Cline Zinfandel
Schlumberger Chardonnay
Wandering River Sauvignon Blanc
Hayes Ranch Zinfandel
Mission St Vincent Bordeaux RSV
Bedford Chardonnay
Goss Creek Red Blend Sonoma
Cathedral Creek Chardonnay
Villa Veneta Pinot Grigio
Red Autumn Chardonnay
Four Star Red

Enter here for your chance to win a $25 gift card to Grocery Outlet where you can take advantage of the great prices and see for yourself.

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Spanish Candied Red Pepper Coca

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Serves 12 as a Tapa
(Modified from The Spanish Table cookbook)

1 loaf of ready-made dough (or gluten free focacia dough)
2 T olive oil
1 medium white onion, thinly sliced
2 jars (16 oz) of roasted red peppers in oil ? half-inch slices
5 T cane juice sugar
2 T sherry vinegar
2 T water
? t sea salt
Confectioners sugar for dusting

  1. Heat olive oil in a pan over medium heat and add onion.
  2. Cook until soft, do not brown ? 5 minutes
  3. Drain peppers,?add and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally
  4. Add sugar, vinegar, water and stir until sugar dissolves
  5. Reduce heat to low and simmer until liquid is reduced, stirring occassionally (about 10 minutes)
  6. Season with salt and let cool
  7. Preheat oven to 450?
  8. Put dough on oiled cookie sheet, brush with olive oil and top with pepper mixture
  9. Bake on center rack about 20 minutes, let cool, cut into small pieces and lightly dust with confectioners sugar

Serve while warm with a delicious?bottle of Raptor Ridge 2013 Tempranillo.

Spanish Candied Red Pepper Coca
Print Recipe
Prep Time
40 min
Cook Time
20 min
Prep Time
40 min
Cook Time
20 min
Spanish Candied Red Pepper Coca
Print Recipe
Prep Time
40 min
Cook Time
20 min
Prep Time
40 min
Cook Time
20 min
Ingredients
Servings:
Share this Recipe
Powered byWP Ultimate Recipe

Raptor Ridge Winery ? All Grown Up

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2013tempranillo_highresRaptor Ridge Winery has lots to celebrate; starting with their 21st birthday. And even though they?re all grown up, they?re still playful at heart. Their production consists of a solid pinot noir program, and additionally, winemaker Scott Shull also experiments with more varieties more uncommon in the Willamette Valley, like Gruner Veltliner, Auxxerois and Tempranillo. This year they produced the winery’s first sparkling wine, just in time for their big birthday celebration.

Launching the brand in 1995, they?ve come a long way since their early days of winemaking (which took place in an old sheep barn). Scott and Annie Shull broke ground on their state-of-the-art?winemaking facility and tasting room in the Chehalem Mountains just outside the little town of Scholls in 2006. They cleared the old cherry orchard?and have since planted 18 acres of vinifera on the 27-acre estate. The sleek, elegant and functional tasting room is perched above the estate vineyards with breathtaking views of four mountain peaks?and an air of country you just can’t miss.

According to Scott Shull, he?s a land guy. He manages their vineyard in such a way as to let the expression of the land show through. Despite years of limited rainfall, the vineyards are well established and have not been irrigated in four years. He describes winemaking?like a rubik?s cube?he takes different blocks of the vineyard and various clones which are all fermented separately until the vintage is clearly understood, at which point they can be blended together depending on texture, aroma, flavor and how they all click together; a sort of gestalt approach to winemaking. His description makes sense considering his background is in engineering. And while his science side still has a chance to show itself, he?s also self-described as having more of a zen style to winemaking, he tries not to analyze it too much and relies more on his instincts and muscle memory. Something that is clearly working for him.

Raptor Ridge produces so many fantastic wines, just taste them and you’ll understand, but?since November 12, 2015 marks Tempranillo Day, let?s talk about the 2013 Raptor Ridge Tempranillo.

Tempranillo is indigenous of Spain and found in the great Rioja wines, but the noble variety is found all over world, including Oregon. In fact, it?s the fourth most planted wine grape and is even grown in Thailand.

Raptor Ridge Winery sources the grapes for their Tempranillo from Folin Vineyard, a high elevation vineyard located in the warm climate Rogue River Valley in Southern Oregon. The 2013 vintage is straightforward and deliciously drinkable; produced with finesse and an experienced hand. Avoiding the pitfalls of over-extraction and over-manipulation, the pure flavors of blueberries, pie spice and a subtle smokiness are bright and clear and encourage creative food pairings.

Open a bottle and try with Spanish Candied Red Pepper Coca (recipe here) ? a flatbread pizza topped with candied smoked peppers.