Last night my hubby and I attended ChocolateFest Portland for date night. This fundraising event for the World Forestry Center is tasty and fun night. The rest of the weekend is sure to follow suit. I can't wait until next year. ChocolateFest is such a great event.
So many exhibitors, so little time
I may stop back today for a bit. So many exhibitors and so much chocolate to sample, but so little time. By the end of the night, I actually couldn't sample any more chocolate (words I'm not sure I would ever say out loud, but did). Also, I learned a valuable lesson about chocolate: don't eat too much chocolate at night or you won't go to sleep (yep, that happened…I was up for hours).
While there weren't any exhibitors that I didn't enjoy, there were absolutely some that stood out for me. Here's a snapshot of my favorites.
- Music by Patrick Lamb: Patrick Lamb was great. Being fairly new to PDX, I am not familiar with any local bands. Patrick Lamb was excellent. I could have listened to the perform for more than the 3 hours they did. I'll be watching for their next gig.
- Abbey Creek Vineyard: This Portland-area vineyard offers some very good wines, including a 2011 Pinot Gris “Juicy Fruit” and 2011 Merlot “Easy Like Sunday Morn.” Winemaker Bertony Faustin was also such a pleasure to chat with. I'm looking forward to a trip to their tasting room.
- Arrowhead Chocolates: Creators of delectable truffles, my favorite truffle of the night was their House Chai Truffle. The flavor profile was so well-rounded. It reminded me of a fine wine with a long finish…the flavor just kept going.
- Branson's Chocolates: More amazing truffles. I sampled their blackberry truffle ganache used in some of their truffles. The blackberry was just enough to add a berry sweetness without being overpowering.
- Decedent Creations: Beaverton-based bakery with handmade goodness. Their Salty Dog Brownie with toffee chunks and salted ganache drizzle was simply ah-mazing. I'm looking forward to buying their confections at the farmers market.
- HV Cellars: Their award-winning 2009 Chardonnay and 2009 Pinot Noir were worth stopping to taste. The garnet Pinot Noir was my favorite of their wines with lots of red fruit on the nose.
- Melting Pot Candy: If you like toffee, you must stop and try their almond dark chocolate toffee.
- Noble Estate Vineyard & Winery: Their award-winning wines were fantastic. The 2012 Pinot Gris was beautiful and fruity; the 2010 Pinot Noir was so round with an earthy, spicy finish; and the Passion rose with notes of strawberry was an excellent rose that wasn't too sweet.
- Opal Apples: This new variety of apple is delicious. They were also very refreshing and palate cleansing after sampling so much chocolate.
- Sage & Sea Farms: Offering one of the most unique products I've ever sampled: shrub. I'd never heard of this vinegar and sugar-based product until last night. I only purchased two food items to bring home. Their Strawberry Basil Shrub was one of them.
- Sipping Dreams: The other food product I bought was the World Spice Drinking Chocolate. It reminded me of a blend of hot chocolate and chai, but richer, spicier, and more rounded. Simple decadent.
- Thrive PacificNW: I had the most amazing Thai Coconut Chicken Lettuce Wraps for dinner from this restaurant booth. So good. Free-range That coconut marinated chicken, water chestnuts, scallions, red cabbage, peanuts, mint, and basil tossed in a Thai coconut curry sauce. Ah-mazing.
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