Come September, our neighbor to the south is getting an envy-inducing food festival—the kind that draws nationally acclaimed chefs on par with glitzy culinary hobnob-a-thons in places like Aspen, Austin, South Beach and Charleston.
Feast Portland is sponsored by Bon Appetít, and happens September 20–23. This morning the organizers unveiled the event’s full lineup.
Food geeks: Prepare to freak out. The four-day throwdown includes New York chefs like April Bloomfield of the Spotted Pig (among other restaurants), Anita Lo (of Annisa, as well as Top Chef Masters), Gabrielle Hamilton of Prune and this lovely memoir, and Matt Lightner, who left Portland’s Castagna last year to move east. He’s returning to do a dinner with Charleston chef Sean Brock, a baby-faced, arm-inked force of culinary awesomeness who fries his chicken in butter and the commingled fats of chicken, bacon, and country ham.
California is sending plenty of talent too, including Chris Cosentino, whose San Francisco restaurant Cosentino was glorying in offal before we all started freaking out about it. Speaking of meat, Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo of Animal and Son of a Gun in Los Angeles will be there. So will Nancy Silverton, of Campanile and Mozza. And obviously a fleet of stellar Portland chefs are turning out, including Gabriel Rucker (Le Pigeon, Little Bird) Andy Ricker (all things Pok Pok), Chris Israel of Gruner, Jenn Louis of Lincoln (look for her on the cover of Food and Wine this summer, along with our own Cormac Mahoney and Blaine Wetzel), and…you know what: the complete roster is here. Most of the big-name visiting chefs are pairing up with Portland chefs to put on one-of-a-kind dinners around town.
The only thing missing from this extravaganza: Seattle. Feast’s organizers say they are hoping to finalize and announce some Seattle representation in the coming weeks.
The schedule of events simply boggles the mind. An all-in ticket that gets you access to every last event runs $650. Friday and Saturday tickets run $350, but there’s an a la carte list of events too. Granted this cavalcade doesn’t come cheap, but I have yet to splurge on an event like this and walk away feeling like it didn’t deliver good value for the money. Eater Portland also has a helpful breakdown of all the collaborations, demos, pavilions, and one hell of a sandwich invitational.