Fermentation Nation

Have a Rotten Good Time at the Portland Fermentation Fest

Pickles to miso to Hawaiian moonshine, the city’s eighth annual “Stinkfest” boasts the best ferments in town.

By Kelly Clarke October 18, 2017

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Angry pickles from a last year's Portland Fermentation Festival.

Be it kimchi, miso, sour dill pickles, natto, or injera—the eighth annual Portland Fermentation Festival is set to showcase more than 50 fermented foods and drinks from more than 20 local amateur and pro picklers and fermenters.

It all goes down at Ecotrust on Thursday, October 26. Ante up $10 ($12 at the door) for a chance to sample all the goods—krauts to kombucha—and trade fermenting tips, and generally marvel at the bubbly, fizzy, inexhaustible power of rot. (Psst: Are you a home fermenter? Sign up to share your own goods, too.) 

Fest co-creator and cookbook author Liz Crain (Hello! My Name Is Tasty, The Toro Bravo Cookbook) excitedly reports that some ferments less common to Portland are on the roster this year, including Hawaiian okolehao “moonshine” (made with the root of the ti plant) from Nat West of Reverend Nat's Hard Cider and Obon PDX's Japanese tofu misozuke, often considered a vegan cheese.

An insider tip from Crain, who also occasionally pens stories about punk pierogi for PoMo: Pace yourself and head to the roof for pints of Reverend Nat's cider and eats from Cinder BBQ when you need a break. “It can get pretty stinky (in a funky good way with all those open crocks) a.k.a. Stinkfest in the main hall,” she admits. “There's a cozy open fireplace and plenty of fresh air on the roof…”

Portland Fermentation Festival

6–9:30 p.m. Thu, Oct 26 (tastings at 6 or 7:30 p.m.), Ecotrust, $10 advance, $12 cash at the door; kids 12 and under are free 

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