Deschutes Street Fare 2010   Leave a comment

Deschutes Street Fare was a street festival event that featured sampler size street fare from ten food carts, paired with Deschutes beer tasters, to benefit Morrison Child and Family Services. It's just getting summer-like hot in the past day or so, which meant that when the gates opened at 5pm there was full on sunshine and sweat as everyone seemed to come directly from work. Within a few hours, it started to calm down so everyone was no longer elbow to elbow, and half the street started to get some shade as the sun went on its way down.

Except for the crowd (which was a good thing for Morrison, but meant that when the space got full it was very uncomfortable and they even limited admission for a while because of reaching capacity… not sure how you calculate capacity on a street but I'm sure there must be an algorithm), I have no real complaints. Obviously, they were not sure what the turn-out was going to be, and since they had only set aside the outside block between Deschutes and Armory and no space inside Deschutes itself there wasn't a lot of space to go to. As comparison, the Beer n Burgers Event had also only been a block and that space had been fine (not even included the sidewalk), though they also only had 5 stands, not 10, and no musicians or stages.

I got a sampler pass, which got me in the door and also 7 tokens for $25, allowing me to sample 7 out of the 10 pairings. I carefully tried to plan my calories for the day based on this. When I arrived, the line for prepaid vs at the door was the same, so apparently the only advantage was that online you could pay with a credit card while at the door was cash only, and even those who had already decided what to buy got to enjoy everyone at the door reading through how many carts there were and trying to guesstimate how many tokens to get. I wish there were more reward for those who plan ahead and guarantee a paid sale before the event, but I also had the advantage of already knowing my cart visit order.

First was Slow & Low, for their cantonese pork belly Bahn Mi with housemade kimchi, kimchi mayo, cilantro, iceburg lettuce, and fennel pickle, paired with Cascade Ale. This was very satisfying, though there was a little too much bread competing with that tasty pork belly. Needed less doughy bread, or more belly (fat and all, as I would expect from a traditioanl bahn mi). Cascade went so naturally with this I didn't even think about it.

Next was a stop at Grilled Cheese Grill, which has been on my wishlist for a while, and still is after this tasty example of a jalapeno popper sandwich of roasted jalapeno peppers with colby jack cheese, cream cheese, crumbled corn tortilla chips on grilled sourdough bread. It was matched with a green lakes organic ale to try to cool the spice. Extra love for them because they gave out branded frisbees, which were great for balancing food and drink while standing. I saw that some thought this had too much heat and couldn't finish it, but I had no problems.

Garden State came with their famous meatball parmesan sliders with all natural beef and pork in a big meatball covered with mozzarella and marinara, paired with Mt St Hellens keller beer. It is as seriously filling as it appears. 

Mum's Kitchen offered a South African influenced Indian spicy garlic pork curry with fresh squeezed IPA, a pairing which just didn't work for me.

My palatte was immediately refreshed and cheered by Flavour Spot's sausage&maple dutch taco (waffle sandwich) and their maple pecan version, both paired with maiboc. Extra shoutout for providing their branded wet naps for sticky finger cleanup, so thoughtful.

 

Potato Champion's poutine from Spudnik, paired with alma NWPA, met expectations. Really though, getting the real deal from the cart at SE 12th and Hawthorne after a few drinks where it is more loaded with gravy and chunks of rogue cheese can't compare to a sampler.

The excellent finish was Oregon Ice Works strawberry gelato, which I had with Green Lakes Organic Ale. The strawberry was the best of the three offerings they had, the other three being peach and chocolate black butte porter.

This means I passed on Whiffie's bbq brisket and mozzarella fried pie paired with Hop in the Dark- I was tempted for the beer alone, it being the only dark beer, but I had Whiffie's already at the Bite. For similar reasons of having experienced them before, I passed on Pyro Pizza and their margherita pizza on wheat crust with Twilight ale. I also passed on Ali Baba's gluten free chicken and kabob with gluten free pale ale, though the gluten free pairing was clever.

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