Last week I met up with Amanda Peden chair of Slow Food Portland. We met at Ecotrust so I got to have a cup of tea from Citizen Coffee which I'd been wanting to check out ever since Laughing Planet Cafe owner Richard Satnick told me about it. I showed up three hours early for my meeting with Amanda when I was supposed to be on the other side of town meeting with the folks at Nossa Familia Coffee. Lucky for me it all worked out and I blamed my calendar. Stupid calendar.
Even though Slow Food Portland is the oldest Slow Food chapter in the country (it precedes the national Slow Food USA in New York) and even though I've been in Portland now for seven years I've never been to a local Slow Food event. Many have piqued my interest though especially in the past few months.
Slow Food has the reputation in some parts as being a foodie wine and cheese club but it isn't in Portland and not so much in any of the worldwide chapters. The Portland chapter has 450-plus members and hosts mostly low dough and sometimes no dough events. Within the last couple years more young people have gotten involved -- half of Slow Food Portland's steering committee is now 35 years old and younger.
Here are some images taken from some popular Slow Food Portland events this spring and summer...
Some other things that I learned while talking to Amanda:
Slow Food Portland members pay dues that go to the national office -- $60 a year per individual, $75 per couple, $30 for students. Since the national office doesn't financially support its US chapters each one does its own fund raising. Slow Food Portland is volunteer-run.
On July 21st Slow Food Portland will host another of its well attended happy hours from 5:30pm to 7pm at the North Mississippi Pastaworks. Cory Schreiber, former chef-owner of Wildwood will speak about Oregon Department of Agriculture's Farm to School program for a bit and then folks can ask questions and hang out. The happy hour is free and food and drinks can be purchased. At Slow Food Portland's last happy hour at Castagna Lisa Weasel spoke and about 70 people attended.
Slow Food Portland www.slowfoodportland.com