Our Table in the Field + Joshua McFadden of Ava Gene’s

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Farm dinners.  You should definitely do them.

I’ve seen many a dreamy photo from farm dinners held in the field with twinkly lights and have always wanted to attend one.  The idea of eating a meal made with veggies grown from the very farm you’re sitting on is as close to farm-to-table as you can get.

Unless you actually live on a farm and eat what you grow, farm-to-table can be difficult to achieve.  It’s more like farm-to-truck-to-store-to-cart-to-car-to-fridge-to-table, haha!

Adding to the list of things I love about Our Table – they do farm field dinners in the Summer!

That in itself is fun, but add in the fact that their featured Chef is Joshua McFadden from Ava Gene’s and you know you’re in for a treat.  I’m not sure when or how their partnership with Ava Gene’s / Roman Candle Baking Co. started, but let’s just thank our lucky stars that it did!

Here are a “few” photos from the dinner I attended in July.  It featured wines from Pete’s Mountain Vineyard and included a farm tour, followed by a meal to remember!  And more wine!!

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Their last dinner of the season is coming up next Saturday, 9/26get tickets here – it will feature Chef Joshua McFadden from Ava Gene’s, and wine from Durant Vineyards.  Trust me, you won’t be sorry!!

Don’t believe me?  Check out last October’s USA Today article: “10 Best: Places to dine down on the farm”.

Who else is with me on the farm dinner love bandwagon wheelbarrow?!!

(The fun legal disclosure: This September is membership month at Our Table and I’m partnering with them for a blog series sharing my co-op story and how they help me eat local.  I  am receiving a small discount on purchases I make, but all thoughts and opinions are my own.  If I didn’t genuinely love this place I would not be telling you about it.  Check out all my Our Table coverage here!)

C A T C H . U P .

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Do you have a blog?  And a day job?  Do you ever write blog posts in your head while at that day job and then get home and the last thing you want to do is turn on the computer and write that blog post?  No?  Uh, me neither.

So, let’s see, what’s been happening the last nine weeks…

F E B R U A R Y

  • I had an amazing dinner at Cocotte for a blogger event thanks to Heather Jones.  I got to hang out with Brandie, Fabi, and Marisa while eating some seriously good food.  I need to take Mr. Won’t Run there for date night sometime, and I suggest you check it out too!

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M A R C H

  • I met up with the Ladies Who Brunch to discuss The Snow Child and Little Bee.  While I didn’t love either of those books, I am absolutely loving this fun little book club!  It’s getting me back into reading (and out of my usual YA Vampire genre), I get to eat B R U N C H, and I hang out with people I really like.  WinWinWin.  This meet-up took place at Maurice – “A Modern Pastry Luncheonette bound by old world charm” – and I had the most amazing rosemary currant scone with candied kumquat jam.  They had me at rosemary!

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  • Mr. Won’t Run wanted to get lunch at Double Dragon one Sunday afternoon, and it was just as good as last time!  We drove down Division to see what else there was and ended up stopping at Salt & Straw (because ice cream on a cold and rainy day in March makes total sense in Portland).  We walked right by Roman Candle Baking Co. which we still need to try, and it’s right next to Ava Gene’s.  I told Mr. Won’t Run that we should try Ava Gene’s sometime because Portland Monthly voted it the restaurant of the year and it was on all of the top new restaurant lists (Portland Monthly, Willamette Week, Bon Appetit, Eater PDX).

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  • I had my 7 year anniversary at the day job – almost 7 1/2 years if you count the time as a temp – it’s the longest I’ve ever been at one place!  I guess that’s what happens when you’re an adult.  I am very thankful for it, but it’s not my passion, so hopefully the doula career can take over in the next couple of years.
  • 3/6 Apparently Mr. Won’t Run couldn’t get Ava Gene’s out of his head because just four days after we walked by it, we had to go for dinner.  It was a Thursday and the earliest reservation I could get was 9:15pm!  We LOVED all the food, and we sat at the kitchen bar so we got to watch the food being made which was fun!

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  • We took an impromptu trip to Cannon Beach for the weekend and stayed at Tolovana Inn which we really enjoyed.  The room was more like an apartment, it had a separate bedroom, full kitchen, and dining/living areas.  We grabbed dinner at Mo’s the first night since it was right next door (and since Tolovana Inn gives you coupons for free chowder and drinks).  The next day we walked around town eating all the things!  We would definitely recommend Tolovana Inn, The Lazy Susan Cafe, Ecola Seafoods, Chocolate Cafe, Cannon Beach Bakery, Cannon Beach Distillery, and Crepe Neptune!  We would NOT recommend Warren House Pub, although that is based only on the lack of customer service – we were never acknowledged by wait staff that walked by multiple times so we left.  I’ve heard the food is pretty good, but I’m not sure how they expect to get new people to try the food if they don’t even acknowledge them.  We’ve both worked in food service and sales so we are extremely critical of customer service!

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The Veronica Mars Movie premiered on 3/14!  Did you watch the show when it was on?  It was only one for 3 seasons before it was cancelled WAY TOO SOON!!!  The fans have held out hope the last seven years that somehow, someway, Veronica Mars would live again, and thanks to their Kickstarter campaign, we made it happen.  I am proud to say that I donated to get the movie made, and I loved every single second of it.  There is also a book that just came out and it picks up where the movie leaves off.  The genius creator, Rob Thomas, has said that there will be more books, and that any future movies will pick up wherever the books are at, so everything is on the same timeline.  I love how much the Veronica Mars creators and cast are just as in love with it as the fans are.

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  • Missed a meeting of Ladies Who Brunch at Meriwether’s because of stupid cramps.  Am I allowed to talk about cramps or is that TMI?  Do people still say TMI?  We had read the book Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg, all about women in today’s business world and how a lot of them are sabotaging their potential success in ways that a man wouldn’t, and they most likely don’t even realize they’re doing it.  I definitely related to a few of the examples, and I would totally recommend the book.

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Photo from Rachel’s Instagram!

  • Mr. Won’t Run turned 38!  He wasn’t feeling well so we didn’t really celebrate, just picked up some Thai food.  I didn’t even bake him a cake.  I know, I’m an amazing wife, huh?  The thing is, he’s not even a cake fan.  Maybe I’ll make him a belated key lime pie.  You know, now that it’s almost May.

A P R I L

  • Took a quick trip to Tucson to visit family on my Mom’s side.  I was born in Tucson and lived there until I was 8 and still have a lot of family there.  My Mom and Stepdad both work at a school so they get Spring Break and they haven’t been to Tucson in ages so they decided it was time and I joined them for a few days.  I got to meet up with my friend Becky which was great!  She’s been through a lot since the last time we were together and I hated not being close enough to hang out with her so it was great to spend some time together and catch up.  She’s been staying at a farm type of place, and there are a bunch of animals, including A BABY GOAT!  NAMED JOY!!  Cutest thing ever!  If you stop petting her she’ll do what a dog or cat does and paw (hoof?) at you!  When in Arizona… snakes, prickly pear margaritas, and coffee by the pool!

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  • While in Tucson I missed another meeting of Ladies Who Brunch, this time at Tasty & Alder to discuss Me Before You by Jojo Moyes.  I still plan to read this book as soon as my library hold comes in, all the ladies loved it, but apparently I’ll need to be prepared with tissues nearby for an ugly cry sesh of grand proportions.  I was so sad to miss Tasty & Alder, it’s been on my to-eat list for forever and everyone seems to love it!

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Photo from Lindsay’s Instagram!

  • Thankfully there was another Ladies Who Brunch meeting in April that I could make it to, we went to Kern’s Kitchen and discussed Where’d You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple.  When I say “discussed” in regards to these book club meetings, I mean for about the first five minutes, then we just chat and catch up.  The book might come up again here and there, and while we all enjoy the reading, I think it’s really just an excuse to get together, and I’m totally okay with that!

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Aaaaaaand, I think that brings us current!

See you in another nine weeks.