Live Oregon

The Oregon Kiwi

Oregon Kiwi: We are the country’s top producer of this unusual fruit written by Sophia McDonald | photography by Anthony C. Castro Is it possible to grow this tropical fruit in Oregon? Oregon is known for producing world-class berries from spring to early summer. But come September, a strange-looking variety briefly appears for about two weeks. They’re tan globes about the size of a grape. Each has a sweet-tart flavor and a smooth skin that’s entirely edible. Cut one open and the mystery is solved. The flesh of these tiny fruits is lime green and dotted with tiny black seeds. They’re known as kiwi berries, baby kiwi or hardy kiwi, and they’re kin to the fuzzy-skinned fruit commonly found in grocery stores. Oregon is the country’s top producer of this unusual fruit—which is to say there are a handful of farmers growing them on about 125 acres. Peter Dinsdale with…

Oregon Kiwis Do Exist and So Does The Kiwitini

Before I talk about Oregon kiwis, I need to be completely honest. written by Thor Erickson | photos by Megan Morse When the editors of 1859 Oregon’s Magazine proposed that I write about kiwis, I thought they had lost their minds. Kiwis? In Oregon? Really? I went home and binge-watched “Flight of the Conchords” while I did some research. After a healthy dose of Bret and Jemaine, I soon found that kiwis do grow in Oregon, and are becoming quite popular. Kiwi berries (also known as hardy kiwi, grape kiwi or cocktail kiwi) are smooth-skinned and much smaller in size than their furry cousins from New Zealand. I drove out to Dundee to HB&K farms to pick a few for myself. The strawberry-sized kiwi berries, or Actinidia arguta, are not genetically modified minis, but their own perennial vine, native to Japan, China and Russia. Kiwi berries have a short growing season,…

Green Living Around the State

Step inside these recent sustainable home designs around the state written by Melissa Dalton Oregon has some serious green building cred, but there’s always room for improvement. Governor Kate Brown led the state into an embrace of energy conservation when, last November, she signed an executive order stating that newly constructed residences must demonstrate 40 to 50 percent more energy efficiency than conventional construction. Intrigued, we checked out three recent sustainable builds to better understand what our future neighborhoods might look like. The First Passive House in Corvallis exterior photography by David Paul Bayles | interior photography by Jen G. Pywell Choosing to Build their first home was a no-brainer for Carl and Julie Christianson. He runs G. Christianson Construction, which was started by his parents in Corvallis in 1986. Less obvious is that the couple would make their home a certified Passive House. Although Carl’s company had never built…

OK Omens Wine Bar and Bistro

OK Omens is a superb wine bar with an elevated bistro menu that’s worth checking out written by Jen Stevenson | photos by Alan Weiner Photography No longer Café Castagna, but still Castagna’s café, this lively new Ladd’s Addition wine bar retains the same sleek look (and beloved patio) as its predecessor, while debuting a playfully scholarly natural-wine-centric list to pair with James Beard Award-nominated Castagna chef Justin Woodward’s simple but superlative new bistro menu. Settle in for a late summer evening at one of the garden-side tables, inches from fragrant plumes of fresh mint and lemon verbena, and enlist the help of spirited sommelier Brent Braun, who won’t steer you wrong on the perfect bottle to go with Woodward’s burnt-beet-topped steak tartare, grilled squid with chicory and Thai basil, and buttermilk fried chicken with spicy greens and hot sour cream. Like the savory offerings, desserts are often twists on…

Autumn Beer Is Best Sipped Around A Fire

Hello Autumn Beer: As fall arrives, grilling and beer don’t need to take a back seat written by Jeremy Storton Although the dog days are behind us, visions of summer’s splendor flash across our memories like a late-night highlight reel. Lulled by warm days, many of us continue to push the outdoor barbecues in the evenings. But the chilly nights confirm that summer is indeed over. The days of summer salads and lagers may linger behind us, but a change of season invites a different, equally splendid experience. In fall, I find myself sitting fireside, wrapped in a blanket and tending to the various meats, veggies or paella grilling over the coals. Sometimes there is wine, but there is always beer. For me, there is something that excites my palate about pairing dark and brooding malty beers with the crackle of fire and the sizzle of steak. My goal is…

DIY: How To Make a Terrarium

Nothing pretties up the bathroom like a little terrarium written by Melissa Dalton Make your own terrarium by following these easy tips, terrariums can be made with materials bought from specialty terrarium shops, pet and aquarium stores, home improvement destinations and the nursery. 1 PICK A CONTAINER Whether it’s a vintage cloche from an antique mall or an ordinary fish bowl, pick a clear glass container that will offer plenty of space for the plants and transmit enough light to encourage growth. If choosing a container with a lid, make sure it won’t be sitting in the direct sun, as that can kill the plants inside. 2 POUR THE FOUNDATION Cover the bottom with small rocks to encourage drainage. Pour in a layer of sand, using a funnel to keep the grains neat. Have fun choosing the colors of these elements, since they will be visible. Next, add activated charcoal…

Oregon Innovators Then and Now

A look back, and ahead, at Oregon Innovators written by James Sinks In the yellowed pages of history, the promise of Oregon Innovators bade explorers to plunge headlong into the rugged—and often damp— frontier. It was no place for fear of the unknown. at same unforgiving ethos goes for the Oregon trailblazers of the business sort. “ The cowards never started and the weak died along the way,” said Nike co-founder Phil Knight, in his bestselling memoir, Shoe Dog.  The Oregon economy of today has been shaped by big thinkers, like Knight and others, whose ideas and dogged tenacity created opportunities and jobs by the thousands, spawned spinoffs, saved lives and—to help all of us celebrate more effectively—made vineyards more productive. Of course, some Oregon inventions are just plain fun, and tasty. The beanbag Hacky Sack that helped occupy the time of countless college students before dating apps? Created in 1972 in…

The Oregon Wine Experience in Jacksonville

If wine is your thing, check out The Oregon Wine Experience in Jacksonville. sponsored content provided by Travel Medford The Oregon Wine Experience is a weeklong festival, at the Bigham Knoll Campus and at wineries and restaurants around the region, offers a celebration of all things wine. This year, the experience will take place August 22 to August 26. Start with the Medal Celebration on August 23, which offers small plates and award-winning wines from the Oregon Wine Competition. Or indulge in an Ultimate Vintner Dinner, taking place throughout the month. The dinners, hosted by winery owners at their winery and vineyards, are multi-course meals with wine pairings and other experiences. Participating wineries include local favorites 2Hawk Vineyards & Winery, Troon Vineyard and Kriselle Cellars. The Founders’ Barrel Auction, on August 24, features barrel tastings, lunch from Seven Feathers Casino Resort chef Mark Henry, and, of course, an auction. If…

Central Oregon Weekend Wanderings

Central Oregon weekend wanderings, find out where to eat, sleep and stay written by Jen Stevenson EN ROUTE To begin your weekend wanderings in Central Oregon start by heading east on Highway 22 from Salem, stop for a marionberry scone break at homey Rosie’s Mountain Coffee House in Mill City, or continue on to Mountain High Grocery in Detroit for the homemade doughnuts. If traveling via Highway 26, brake for blueberry cake doughnuts and apple fritters at Joe’s Donut Shop in Sandy. EAT + DRINK In Sisters, get a hearty start to the day with The Cottonwood Cafe’s Big Tree Benedict, piled on a flaky homemade herb biscuit. After poking around the local shops, take a golden milk latte and crêpe break at Suttle Tea teahouse, pick up local provisions and organic smoothies at Melvin’s Market, then share wood-fired pies on the patio at Boone Dog Pizza cart. Or, drop…

Best Places to Eat a Summer Meal in Oregon

Best places for enjoying a summer meal in the garden written by Jen Stevenson XICO For a taste of Mexico City and Oaxaca in a secret urban garden off Portland’s busy Division Street, ask for a patio table at this mecca of masa and mezcal. Chef Kelly Myers’ dinner menu beckons with serrano vinaigrette-tossed squid atop homemade blue corn tostadas, grilled chorizo verde with grilled cactus salad and cinnamon sugar-dusted sopaipillas with blackberry mezcal sauce. The recently revived lunch and brunch menu holds its own— chilaquiles and a Michelada al fresco make for the perfect summer Sunday morning. 3715 SE DIVISION ST. PORTLAND xicopdx.com GATHERING TOGETHER FARM Take a mini summer road trip to this working Philomath farm, where the south Willamette Valley fields and orchards part briefly to accommodate the cozy covered porch cafe and market. The menu changes with the crops, so expect duck breast with boysenberries and…