A Grand Feast of Oregon, by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen

Disclosure: This meal was complimentary, but I will always provide my honest opinion and assessment of all products and experiences I may be given. The views and opinions expressed in this blog are entirely my own.

I was introduced to Hawks View Cellars during Feast. They are a 50 acre winery located in Sherwood (in the Chehalem Mountains/only 30 minutes outside Portland) now run by AJ Kemp, son of the founder. Hawks View was totally under my radar until I saw how devoted they are to making excellent wines. When I had their Pinot Noir Reserve at the Paley Prefunk which I wrote about previously, I found myself crushing hard on them. So I was so thrilled when I was invited to attend a promotional event they were holding, A Grand Feast of Oregon.

At this event 7 wines, and 6 small plates paired with wines would be presented  by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen.

Irving St Kitchen Irving St Kitchen Irving St Kitchen

At this event, Hawks View was pre-releasing their just bottled 2012 Oregon Chardonnay and our soon to be released 2011 California Syrah at this dinner, opening  a 2011 La Baleine large format bottle (I always wondered when those super huge bottles were opened/drank!), and there was a Mystery Wine also, so classily wrapped in a printed paper bag until the mystery would be revealed!

Wines for A Grand Feast of Oregon, by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen Wines for A Grand Feast of Oregon, by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen Wines for A Grand Feast of Oregon, by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen Wines for A Grand Feast of Oregon, by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen

First, as we entered the special event room in the back of Irving St Kitchen, we were greeted by AJ Kemp, co-founder of Hawks View, along with April Yap-Hennig, director of marketing as well as a glass of 2012 Oregon Pinot Gris. Even though the alcohol is almost 15%, the wine tasted so light and refreshing. How irresponsible and dangerous you guys. I felt like I could easily drink several glasses of these! Oh, I see.

A Grand Feast of Oregon, by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen, starting out with 2012 Hawks View Oregon Pinot Gris A Grand Feast of Oregon, by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen, starting out with 2012 Hawks View Oregon Pinot Gris A Grand Feast of Oregon, by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen, starting out with 2012 Hawks View Oregon Pinot Gris

Throughout the evening, AJ, and also Chef Sarah Schafer of Irving St. Kitchen, would introduce each of the 6 pairings of wine and food by explaining the origin story of the wine or the dish. I never knew how much drama goes into a bottle until I heard the tales from AJ, who is so full of infectious enthusiasm
Wine List for A Grand Feast of Oregon, by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen AJ Kemp, cofounder of Hawks View, and Chef Sarah Schafer of Irving St Kitchen present Grand Feast of Oregon, 6 pairings of food and wine by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen AJ Kemp, cofounder of Hawks View, and Chef Sarah Schafer of Irving St Kitchen present Grand Feast of Oregon, 6 pairings of food and wine by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen AJ Kemp, cofounder of Hawks View, and Chef Sarah Schafer of Irving St Kitchen present Grand Feast of Oregon, 6 pairings of food and wine by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen

How to Enjoy Food and Drink Pairings

When it comes to food and drink pairings, this is my advice on how to enjoy a pairing.

  1. The first thing I do is examine the color and viscosity. With the glass on a flat surface, I swirl it to aerate it and examine the color, transparency, and how it moves in the glass. I always do this on a flat surface so that you don’t get accidental splash back on you if the pour is generous  or you bump your arm or get a twitch which causes splashback- which has totally happened to me, all over a sweater!
  2. Next, pick up the glass  immediately after a swirl and tilt it a bit, and put your nose in the glass slightly to smell it. I might do this swirl and smell twice, thinking about what I might detect upfront in the aromas, and how long it lasts, and how strong the aroma is.
  3. Now swirl and take a sip. Maybe do this 2-3 times. You want a very small sip, and you want to make sure it travels all across the tongue, not just the middle or back because although you can taste everything on any part, there might be areas that are more sensitive than others. Think about what it tasted like at the beginning, middle and end. How long could you taste the wine after you swallowed? How did it feel on your tongue – thin, smooth, creamy, velvety, dry, etc? Think about the tastes of sweet, sour, salt, bitter, acidic, citrus or/and earthy.
  4. Next step is to take a small bite of the food pairing, to see what it is like alone. Try to make sure you get a little bit of all the components in your bite. I know this is hard with the smaller appetizer bites! Think about how it tastes on its own, similar with what you did with the wine on step 3.
  5. Take a small swirl, another small bite, and immediately after you swallow the food sip the wine. Think about how the legs of the food you just tasted changes as you take that sip. Does it make certain flavors from the food or wine more prominent, wash out any flavor? As you continue to take small bites and sips, are there certain flavors that build up and are emphasized? Do you think the flavors are complimentary or do they contrast or make something new combined? What do you like better, the wine by itself, the food by itself, or both together?
  6. If possible cleanse your palate with water in between pairings or whenever you wish.

Ok, so now let’s take a look at the pairings I enjoyed for this event!

Hawks View Cellars + Irving Street Kitchen Courses

First Course Food and Wine Pairing

Irving St Kitchen Salmon Gravlax, Sauce Gribiche, Rye Crackers. Paired with 2012 Hawks View Oregon Chardonnay, which offered butteryness but not overly buttery, yaaaayy. I’ve had local OR Chardonnay and been disappointed how it tends to be a bit on the crisp, sweet, but flat/bland side. In the 80s 90s Chardonnay was really oaked, and then it seemed everyone all at once turned and ran the other way, focusing on stainless steel unoaked. This one though brought back the round warmness and creaminess that I’ve been missing in Chardonnays, but without overdoing the oak. This chardonnay is not grown in their vineyard but is sourced in Oregon locally from Gran Moraine, Yamhill-Carlton.
A Grand Feast of Oregon, by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen: Pairing 1 of Irving St Kitchen Salmon Gravlax, Sauce Gribiche, Rye Crackers. Paired with 2012 Hawks View Oregon Chardonnay  A Grand Feast of Oregon, by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen: Pairing 1 of Irving St Kitchen Salmon Gravlax, Sauce Gribiche, Rye Crackers. Paired with 2012 Hawks View Oregon Chardonnay A Grand Feast of Oregon, by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen: Pairing 1 of Irving St Kitchen Salmon Gravlax, Sauce Gribiche, Rye Crackers. Paired with 2012 Hawks View Oregon Chardonnay

Second Course Food and Wine Pairing

Next came AJ and pouring of the Hawks View Mystery Wine for the pairing listed as Chicken Fried Oysters, Herbsaint Aioli, and Hawks View Mystery Wine… revealed to be 2012 White Pinot Noir, aka what AJ called “The Unicorn”. This was one of my top pairings of the evening.
A Grand Feast of Oregon, by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen: AJ and Pouring of the Hawks View Mystery Wine A Grand Feast of Oregon, by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen: AJ and Pouring of the Hawks View Mystery Wine  A Grand Feast of Oregon, by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen: Pairing 2 of Chicken Fried Oysters, Herbsaint Aioli, and Hawks View Mystery Wine... revealed to be 2012 White Pinot Noir

Third Course Food and Wine Pairing

Marinated Pork Chop, Country Ham & Shelling Bean Ragout and Celery Root Apple Slaw with 2010 Hawks View Oregon Pinot Noir. This was my favorite pairing of the evening.
"A "A A Grand Feast of Oregon, by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen: Pairing 3 of Marinated Pork Chop, Country Ham & Shelling Bean Ragout and Celery Root Apple Slaw with 2010 Hawks View Oregon Pinot Noir

Fourth Course Food and Wine Pairing

The course I’ve been waiting for… Irving St Kitchen’s famous fried chicken. Happiness is an Irving St Kitchen fried chicken with smashed potatoes and country gravy and greens.
Happiness is an Irving St Kitchen fried chicken with smashed potatoes and country gravy and greens. Happiness is an Irving St Kitchen fried chicken with smashed potatoes and country gravy and greens.
This was paired with the 2011 Hawks View La Baleine (The Whale), which is a a blend that changes year to year and is dedicated to AJ’s father, whose nickname was The Whale from his banking days before he retired and invested in founding Hawks View Winery. Check out April flexing her incrediblly toned arms as she pours from the decanter!
April flexing her incrediblly toned arms as she pours from the decanter the 2011 Hawks View La Baleine (Whale) "A

Fifth Course Food and Wine Pairing

Although Hawks View does have vineyards from which they produce wines, they also source from California and Washington, specifically Horse Heaven Hills in WA for their cabernet sauvignon and merlot, and malbec grapes and from Gary’s Vineyard in Santa Lucia Highlands of California for Syrah and Pinot Noir. These next two wines marked our departure from drinking Oregon wines (La Baleine has some OR grapes mixed in with CA and WA).
It was paired with a beautiful serving of Irving St Kitchen Teres Major Steak with garlic grits, ancho ketchup, onion rings, marrow sauce
Fifth course, Beautiful serving of Irving St Kitchen Teres Major Steak with garlic grits, ancho ketchup, onion rings, marrow sauce paired with 2010 Hawks View Washington Cabernet Sauvignon Fifth course, Beautiful serving of Irving St Kitchen Teres Major Steak with garlic grits, ancho ketchup, onion rings, marrow sauce paired with 2010 Hawks View Washington Cabernet Sauvignon

Sixth Course Food and Wine Pairing

Finally, dessert was pairing 6 of Chocolate Torte with 2011 Hawks View California Syrah
A Grand Feast of Oregon, by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen: Pairing 6 of Chocolate Torte with 2011 Hawks View California Syrah A Grand Feast of Oregon, by Hawks View Cellars and Irving St Kitchen: Pairing 6 of Chocolate Torte with 2011 Hawks View California Syrah

Thank you so much to Hawks View Cellars for sharing their incredible wines with me at this event, for AJ the storyteller and winemaker who gave up his dream to take New York by the throat to instead come storm Oregon with a distinct viewpoint of wanting to represent the Northwest but aspire to compete with Burgandy and is unashamed to source the best grapes from wherever they may be, including CA and WA, in pursuit of that unique taste profile. And, I also love how they CLEARLY love food- they were everywhere, daily, at Feast Portland events, and this is the second event where they have pointedly put wine and food together into pairings to really help tell the story of deliciousness.

And Chef Sarah, you are kickass, I could have eaten a half dozen of those chicken fried oysters and a whole chicken of that fried chicken,  and I was savoring each of those beans individually in that pork chop dish!
AJ Kemp, storyteller and winemaker for Hawks View Cellars AJ Kemp, storyteller and winemaker for Hawks View Cellars

Check out Hawks View Cellars – tastings are by appointment only but are very personal in touring the vineyard and learning and tasting all their wines- and the kickass deliciousness and best fried chicken in Portland at Irving St Kitchen!

Disclosure: This meal was complimentary, but I will always provide my honest opinion and assessment of all products and experiences I may be given. The views and opinions expressed in this blog are entirely my own.

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Comments

  1. Such a cool space! I want to go check this place out!

  2. Wow, you are quite the pro at tastings and pairings!! These tips are great, you could do a whole post and graphic about them! I’d love to pin for later reference! I’ve never tried doing a pairing tasting before so I totally appreciate your methodical steps!

  3. That looks like a great event. I am definitely not a food blogger though. There is no way I could manage swirling, sniffing, sipping, and tasting. I like to just dig right in 🙂

  4. I have been wanting to try out Hawks View since it is so close to our new place!

  5. Wow- that sounded like a fun and tasty experience.

  6. What an amazing dinner! I love the part about how to taste the wine. I hadn’t thought about swirling it in the glass on a flat surface. My sweaters thank you. 🙂

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  1. […] The photo below is an example of the awesomeness that can come from Chef Sarah when I attended an event where she matched her cooking with Hawks View Wine so I am confident she will be just as kickass doing food pairing with beer. There is another […]

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