Friendship, Living
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Love Where You Live

At the confluence of the North and South Forks of the Yamhill River in the Willamette Valley, sits the historic town of McMinnville, Oregon.  Fresh off of a full day exploring Portland following The Hello Sessions the night before, at least a dozen of my friends and I headed 40 miles southwest for the ‘Love Where You Live’ wine country dinner.

R. Stuart Winery provided the bubbles while Jess Stewart concocted the addictive Newbury Ransom Punch (ingredients at end of post)

Co-hosted by the gracious Chelsey Nichol of Type A Press and my savvy friend, Maggie Battista, of Eat Boutique, guests were served passed hors devours, cocktails, and a 5-course family style meal prepared by Let Um Eat Collective inspired by Maggie’s new cookbook, Food Gift Love. Chelsey’s fourth generation family-owned printing warehouse, which houses her antique letterpress, and the studios of painter, Zach Hixson and sign painter, Mitch Horning, served as the venue.

Location sponsors Zach Hixson, Chelsey Nichol, and Mitch Horning warmly welcomed guests to this beautifully curated McMinnville event.

Katie Stewart‘s floral installations and table arrangements enhanced the rustic charm of the warehouse. The hand painted signage around the space was c/o Zach and Mitch of course!

Each course was paired with Public Road Wines, not allowing for an empty glass in the house. Karl Holl, formerly of Perbacco in San Francisco, is now an Oregon transplant and the Executive Chef of Let Um Eat.

Some of the very best wine in the valley was paired with each course made with locally grown and raised ingredients. Co-host, Maggie Battista, smiles with her approval.  They easily accommodated my gluten free and dairy free requirements with special tweaks on my plate without missing a beat.

The Let Um Eat crew giving the evening’s opening toast. It was hard not to be excited about the farming, the food, and the community with local involvement like this.

Good, old fashioned hospitality enjoyed with friends old and new is always a winning combination.


Until you make it up to Oregon for your next weekend getaway, and I strongly suggest you do, here is a taste of McMinnville for you to enjoy at home.

“Newby’s Ransom Punch”, named for the founder of McMinnville, William T. Newby, and the locally produced Ransom Spirits, was served in a large punch bowl. If you are the kind of person to mix your own drinks in the first place, I think you and your friends will be able to figure out the proportions together at your next gathering. It’ll make for a deliciously fun time, Portlandia style!

Ransom Spirits Old Tom Gin
Rooibos Tea
Fresh Squeezed Lemon Juice
Orchard Peach Liqueur
Ginger Syrup
Ginger Oleo Sacharum

Each guest received a gift bag filled with local edible souvenirs and discounts from these sponsors:

 Honest Chocolates * Jacobsen Salt Co. * News-Register Publishing * Republic of Jam * Oregon Olive Mill/ Red Ridge Farms * Red Fox Bakery * Sokol Blosser Winery * Community Plate * Third Street Flats

Thanks, McMinnville! We all LOVE where you live!

All photography by Kelly Searle and by Blue Chalk Media

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