"It was the oldest sound in the world. Souls flying away." The Secret Life of Bees

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Plate & Pitchfork

I had the pleasure of attending a fabulous dinner last night with Ben and 4 of our close friends.  We went to the Domaine Drouhin winery for the Plate & Pitchfork dinner.  Plate & Pitchfork is an organization that coordinates amazing dinner experiences during the summer here in Oregon.  From their website:  "It started with a simple idea -- a meal that celebrated the amazing food grown in our own backyard. It has evolved into a summer celebration. A gathering that reinforces the connection between the farm and the food on your plate."

A summer celebration indeed!  We arrived around 5:00pm and had our first glass of wine out on the patio.  The view of the vineyards and the Willamette Valley was gorgeous.  We mingled and snacked on appetizers.  At around 6:00, we started on a journey through the vineyards to where the tables were set up for dinner.  We stopped along the way to hear the story of Domaine Drouhin and learned a lot about their grapes, and the process they go through to make the wine.  The dinner tables were set up outside, right in the middle of the vineyard.  I could not have asked for a better location.  Dinner was 4 courses and we enjoyed a different type of wine with each course.  Everything was absolutely delicious.  I think my favorite thing (besides the wine!) was the bacon brittle and blueberry salad.  At around 10:00, we finished up our coffee and started the trek back to our cars. 

It was a spectacular night filled with lovely friends, delicious food, and some of Oregon's best wine.  I loved being outside in the middle of the vineyard.  We watched the sun set as we ate dessert.  It was magical:)  

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Adventures in Macaron Making

If you follow me on Instagram, you know that since coming home from Paris, I have been a bit obsessed with learning how to make homemade macarons  (see my Paris macaron post here).  It has been quite the challenge!  After lots of failed attempts, I was finally successful last weekend.  My first few tries resulted in very tasty, but also very ugly, cookies.  I couldn't figure out how to get the texture just right to create the smooth top and the ruffled "feet" (the sides).  Thanks to those of you who gave me tips on instagram and thanks to Dzung, from My Honeysuckle blog, for posting her  macaron youtube video tutorial!  It was very helpful.

While these are certainly not perfect, they actually look like macarons!!!  I was so very excited and proud of them:)  We had some fresh, local raspberries in the fridge, so I decided I would go for raspberry flavored (my first few batches were strawberry). I can't wait to try different flavors and maybe even some combos.  

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Purple Grass

Hello!  It's been a while.  I've had a busy couple of weeks.  It was so nice to have yesterday off.  I slept in, went to a yoga class with a friend, went to a block party/BBQ, and then spent a "quiet" evening at home.  Having 3 dogs can be a little bit overwhelming when there are lots of loud fireworks going off.  Kya didn't really notice anything was happening, Talus got super exciting and kept wanting to run outside and bark at the fence, and poor Zander was terribly anxious about the whole thing.  Luckily, everyone calmed down much earlier than I expected.  I hope you all had a wonderful holiday!

I want to share some pictures from a hike we did this past Sunday.  We went to the coast and hiked the Cascade Head trail (we did this one last year as well- here).  It was such a beautiful day.  The hike was wonderful and we had a chance to hang out at the beach for a little bit after the hike.