Yamhill Valley Grown, Your Guide To Local Food - Page 10

C l Valley entra They begin arriving early on Easter Sundays, rain or shine, to the farmstead outside of McMinnville, where a local winemaker hosts an annual party for friends, family, colleagues and nearly anyone else who likes to eat and drink well. They park in the stubbly field adjacent to the old, white farmhouse and spill out of their cars in equal parts kids, balls, cases of wine, growlers of beer, and platters heaped with the specialties from their kitchens. Long tables have been set up under the farm’s storage awnings, and by 10 a.m. they are laden with a heavenly bounty of salads, stews, simmering pots of pozole and chile verde alongside crocks of pulled pork and braised beef, kales and cabbages and perfect roasted beets. The air crackles with the sound of homemade sausages being grilled, and twenty bottles of local pinot noir, chardonnay and pinot gris are open and ready for tasting alongside a dozen locally crafted beers and ales. Missoula floods of the Ice Age and a mild climate that was ideal for food crops, dairy farms and grazing livestock. This part of Oregon still grows more hazelnuts, berries, crimson clover, ryegrass seed and peppermint than anywhere else in the nation, and is in the top five of dozens of other crops that range from hops and blueberries to Christmas trees and garlic. In its sheer bounty and variety of foodstuffs, all grown, sourced and prepared within a roughly 20mile radius of the county seat of McMinnville, not to mention its generous spirit of neighbors and friends sharing food, drink and rec \\