Monday, September 15, 2014

Feast Portland 2014: Widmer Brothers Brewing Sandwich Invitational

Thursday is a really exciting day. It's Katie's birthday AND it's the Feast kick-off event where we will eat sandwiches and imbibe until we're so full we will question attending any other Feast event all weekend... Okay, let's not go that far, but with 15 chefs and lots beer, wine, and cocktails, I have no doubt we'll indulge.

Ready to kick off this foodie weekend with us? Here's what you need to know:

What: Widmer Brothers Brewing Sandwich Invitational
When: Sept. 18th, 2014 from 6 - 9 PM
Where: Director Park
Get your tickets: Sandwich Invitational Tickets

The Sandwich Invitational brings 15 of America's top chefs to one spot with the challenge of creating a sandwich that blows all other sandwiches out of the water. The line up includes some local favs like Chris DiMinno of Clyde Common, Rick Gencarelli of Lardo, and Joshua McFadden of Ava Gene's while also bringing chefs from San Francisco, Charleston, Austin, and Baltimore.

To wash it all down there is Widmer; several Northwest wines including Columbia Crest, Erath, Hawks View Cellars, Northstar, and Union Wine Company; and Reyka Vodka from Iceland. 

Here are some pics of last years event to get you salivating. We will be reporting back on our favorites! 

Photo Credit: @bunksandwiches

Photo Credit: @lilslimlady

Photo Credit: @ranknacio

Photo Credit: @juliarraymond

Photo Credit: @hellokirst

See you Thursday!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Sweat & Sip: Sip & Bootybarre at Aspire Total Fitness

What: Sip
Where: 2210 NE Alberta St & 3029 SE 21st Ave 
Honeys Heart: Cute little seating area

I know, I know this is all backwards. Sweat & Sip was all about working out and earning that happy hour cocktail, but class times and locations aren't always conducive to this and it turns out when you exercise a lot sometimes different sips sound really good. In this case we were headed to a 7pm Bootybarre class at Aspire Total Fitness after an appointment with Katie's wedding florist (less than a month out!) and we needed something to tide us over.

Sip (how perfectly named) has two locations. We headed over to their Alberta cart to sit in the sun for a few minutes before our drive to the fitness studio.

Katie ordered the Greensicle ($5.50 16oz) smoothie packed with kale, spinach, banana, fresh OJ, vanilla, dates, and ice, while I went with a The Sweet Green ($7 160z) juice with apple, kale, parsley, celery, cucumber, lemon, and ginger.

Here's the deal.

Pros: Healthy, refreshing, no full tummy before working out.

Cons: $7. I know local and organic can be expensive and she essentially juiced a salad into a cup, but juice doesn't stick with you the same way solid food might and the price is just a bit hard to swallow (pun intended). Shaking the juice with ice would have been a nice addition to cool it down for the hot day too.

We also hit up Greenleaf in the Pearl on occasion for options like this granola bowl with fruit on top for $6.50, and that just seems a bit more doable (and filling) than a $7 juice.

Are we a fans of fresh juices? Yes! Sip is cute and the juice was good, it's just a bit on the spendy side. As long as you're expecting that, you're good to go!

And a word to the wise: don't take a sip of your leftover juice when you get out of your workout class and it's been sitting in a hot car for an hour and a half. Katie learned that the hard way.

What: Bootybarre at Aspire Total Fitness Studio
Where: 14210 SE Sunnyside Road, Suite 600, Happy Valley
Honeys Heart: Everything Bootybarre! 

Revocycle was the first Sweat & Sip that we returned to (we've been back 4 times so far), but Bootybarre marks the second return class. Since this initial visit together, we've gone back at least 3 times and have plans for more- especially since Aspire recently become a sponsor of Katie's dance team!

Katie was introduced to Aspire Total Fitness' Bootybarre class by our friend Allie, who Katie danced with in college. Katie was so impressed by it that we had to make it our next installment of the Sweat & Sip series.

We've both tried Barre3 in the Pearl and while there are aspects of those classes I like (proximity to my apartment being one of them...), this barre version is a bit more dance centric and the tempo of the class is faster and more varied, which I appreciate! Katie also mentioned that since the moves are rooted in ballet (feet in first position!), it's a great way for her to build up the muscles that she uses for dancing in a way that her body is used to.

Since listing pros and cons is fun, here it goes.

Pros: So many! Full-body workout, great teacher, fun moves, challenging, and disco lights (in the evening class).

Cons: It's a bit of a drive (from us, not if you live in Happy Valley...)

Here's the official description:
"A sexy, energetic, fun workout that fuses fitness techniques from Dance, Pilates and Yoga, that will tone, define and chisel the whole body. And get this …you don't even need any dance experience! The bootybarre® method is the perfect combination of strength and flexibility with added cardio to burn fat fast. Barre workouts have also become a popular choice with many celebrities!"

The class is taught by Mackenzie who grew up in Clackamas and went to PLU to receive her Bachelors in Health and Fitness Promotion. She's energetic, and encourages you to have fun, while working your toosh off. We recommend you get your booty to this class ASAP!

Sweat & Sip:

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Seattle Restaurant: Bongos

What: Bongos
Where: 6501 Aurora Ave N, Seattle
When: Sun-Thurs 11am-9am, Fri & Sat 11am-10pm
Honeys Heart: Trinidad Steak Plate

When I drive back to Portland from Whidbey (where I grew up) I try to stop in Seattle and see Jen and Michael. Due to the dogs that typically involves a walk around Green Lake, but with Jen and Michael's recent move and projects (aka lack of working stove) Jen did some research for restaurants that welcome doggies so we could grab dinner instead.

We settled on Bongos, a Cuban cafe with ample outdoor seating- perfect for the dogs and the warm summer evening! After an older woman talked to us about her love of dachshunds for 10 minutes because she "has dachshunds, one that is 17 and one that is fat..." we explored the chalkboard menu comprised of sandwiches, plates, and beer, finally deciding to share two plates.

We went for the Spicy Shrimp ($10.99) with chili sauce shrimp, long gran white rice, Cuban black beans, mango agave slaw, and a maduro and the Trinidad Steak Plate ($10.99) with Caribbean marinated hanger steak served with Cuban black beans, long grain white rice, mango agave slaw, caramelized onions, and a maduro.

So much food! We could have easily shared one, but it was more fun to try both and Michael got leftovers (he didn't join- too busy reflooring the house). The shrimp was very spicy and the steak was perfectly cooked. Both are dishes I would order again, though we agreed it would be fun to try one of the sandwiches next time. 

The patio ended up being great for the dogs- who only cried every time Jen or I walked away- and the food was flavorful and filling. I would definitely return on another trip south!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Feast Portland 2014: HHH Dream Events

Guys! Somehow Feast Portland (and my birthday and the Winterhawks' home opener) are less than a month away! How did that happen? Anyway...

... here are the basics of Feast: 

When: Sept 18-21
Where: All over Portland
What: Delicious food & drinks made by local and national chefs 

Ok, so you already know from our posts last year (here and here) that Feast is the best ever. The not so best-ever part? The events are pretty pricey. In their defense, they are full of uber famous chefs and mixologists providing incredible culinary experiences, but we're talking $55-$200 per ticket and that pretty much reserves attendance to those not on a budget. So not us.

However, Kel and I are lucky in that we both get to go to the Sandwich Invitational this year because it's Doug's birthday present to me and Kelly gets to go with our one blogger pass. Wahoo!

We're working on a post for our fellow budget eaters about The Cheap Stuff during Feast weekend, but until then, here are the top 5 events we'd love to go to if we were rolling in a bit more dough:

Who Spiked the Punch? Large Format Cocktails with Jeffery Morgenthaler 
Cost: $65
What: "Portland’s Bartender-in-Chief Jeffrey Morgenthaler will show you how to scale up your favorite single-serving cocktail recipes to quench an army of friends and guests."
Honeys Heart: Obvs we love a well-made drink and while we might only have 2ish friends, they can drink an army's worth of cocktails! We need this class. (P.S. This class is already sold out. Sorry, if you were planning to spend your extra cash on this one.)

High Comfort at the Nines
Cost: $175
What: "More than 20 chefs push comfort food out of its comfort zone. Put on your cuff links and high heels ladies and gents, cuz we’re headed to The Nines Hotel for the most decadent culinary event around."
Honeys Heart: Jamie Bissonnette from Toro (aka my favorite Boston restaurant) is going to be there. And he's joined by big names like John Gorham, Naomi Pomeroy, Vitaly Paley, Kristen Murray, Gabriel Rucker, and Paul Qui. So fancy!

The Hot 10 Dinner: Celebrating Bon Appetit's Best New Restaurants in America
Cost: $200
What: "Feel the pulse of the country’s best restaurants at this multi-course dinner prepared by past and present recipients of the 'Hot 10,' Bon Appétit’s annual short list of the best new restaurants in America."
Honeys Heart: Wait, this is so fancy. And it's hosted by Bon Appétit Restaurant and Drinks editor Andrew Knowlton so that's pretty awesome too. (P.S. This is also sold out.)

 Girls! Girls! Girls! with Elizabeth Chambers Cellar and Domaine Serene
Cost: $175
What: "Be schooled by bad-ass lady chefs Kuniko Yagi, Christina Tosi , Naomi Pomeroy, Portland, and Johanna Ware as they ‘lean in’ and show you why women are leading the culinary conversation more than ever."
Honeys Heart: Feminism + delicious food = this. What's not to love? Also, I've been obsessed with Christina Tosi since I had her cake truffles at the Night Market last year and I'm scared I'll never eat anything made by her ever again. (P.S. Some lucky ducks bought all the tickets to this event too. Sorry.)

Negroni O'Clock
Cost: $55
What: "Learn how the classic Negroni can be transformed for all times of the day from Portland’s officially unofficial President of Negroni, Douglas Derrick, along with his cocktail compatriots."
Honeys Heart: Kel and I are officially on the negroni bandwagon, so this sounds like lots of fun. And it's only $55- mere pocket change in comparison! There's still tickets- you should go!