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Experience community of urban winery

SE Wine Collective brings community feel to neighborhood


SUBMITTED PHOTOS: JOSH CHANG, SE WINE COLLECTIVE - Kate Monroe poses with wines served at the Cuisinieres at the Collective dinner recently. Featured were wines from the Loire region of France and those made by S.E. Wine Collective members which were inspired by the Loire wines.

My husband Mark and I had dinner in the Loire Valley of France last week. Well, not exactly, but it seemed like it. We discovered our next big Food Find of 2015: Southeast Wine Collective’s Cuisinieres at the Collective dinner series.

The dinner series is hosted by SEWC founders Kate and Tom Monroe and reflects their passion in sharing the urban winery experience. The Monroes are owners and founders of Division Winemaking Company; Tom is the winemaker and Kate is the marketer/organizer.

The Monroes spent a year in France learning the art and craft of winemaking. Tom said the grapes were brought from the vineyards into the village center, where there was access to water and the necessary wine making facilities. Winemaking was a community effort, which took place right where the people lived.

When they moved back to Oregon their focus was on making “approachable and balanced wines.” Wishing to recreate that sense of community here in the United States, the couple founded the Collective in 2012, bringing together like-minded wineries eager to collaborate in the making of wine.

Tom Monroe and his wife, Kate Monroe, share information about the wines made by Collective members.

Now, two and a half years into the project, S.E. Wine Collective includes 10 wineries: Division Winemaking Co., Fullerton Wines, Helioterra Wines, Jackalope Wine Cellars, James Rahn Wine Co., Jasper Sisco, Ore Winery, Vincent Wine Co., Willful Wine Co. and 5Q Wines. They produce 20 varietals ranging from Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Blanc to more obscure, lesser known varietals such as Gamay Noir, Mourvedre, Chenin Blanc, Muscat and Arneis.

The Cuisinieres at the Collective dinner featured wines from the Loire Valley and Collective wines inspired by them. Collective Chef Althea Grey Potter created an inventive and delectable four-course feast which paired perfectly with the wines.

With appetizers we sampled Melon de Bourgogne, drinking Domaine de la Pepiere Muscvadete 2013 and locally made Helioterra Melon de Bourgogne 2014.

The first course of trout with buttered asparagus, beurre blanc and tarragon we sipped Chenin Blanc. We sampled Francois Pinon Vouvray Trois Argiles 2011 and locally made Division-Villages Chenin Blanc 2014, which was one of our favorites.

The main course of pork pot au feu with buckwheat dumplings, leeks, mushrooms and carrots was served with Gamay and Pinot Noir (Chevemy). We sampled Clos du Tue-Bouef Chevemy Rouge la Calliere 2010 against locally made Bow & Arrow Rhinestones — both wonderful.

The cheese course featured bleu d’auvergne, walnut shortbread and petite greens served with Cabernet Franc. We sampled Domaine Baudry Chinon Les Granges 2012 and locally made Jackalope Cabernet Franc Mae’s Vineyard, another favorite.

Dessert was chocolate pot de creme, with whipped creme fraiche, Cointreau and orange peel.

As delicious as the food and wine were, the highlight of the evening was learning about the wines. Tom shared the stories about the Collective wines and Loire wine expert Elliot Karpman of PDX Wines told us about the Loire wines poured. And during the dinner there was plenty of great conversation and friendships forming among those at the tables. Two couples at our table discovered they lived just blocks from each other in the neighborhood and walked home together.

That easy, friendly sense of community is exactly what Kate and Tom were aiming to recreate with S.E. Wine Collective.

Don’t feel badly that you missed out on the first dinner of the series. Just sign up for the dinner coming April 21. The menu will be based on late spring foods served with Vin de Pays Roses, a term meaning ‘country wine.’ Cost is $50 per person.

S.E. Wine Collective is located at 2425 S.E. 35th Place at Division St. The wine bar is open 4-10 p.m. Monday through Friday, 1-10 p.m. Saturday and 1-8 p.m. Sunday and by appointment, with happy hour served from 4-6 p.m. daily. Enjoy flights or glasses of all 10 Collective members’ wines, craft beer and long menu of inventive foods created by Chef Althea.

To learn more visit sewinecollective.com. To make a reservation for the April dinner email lena@sewinecollective.com.

Chef Althea Grey Potter prepare a spring feast paired with the wines, including these mussels with verte sauce and potato crips.

One of the most amazing dishes we enjoyed was an appetizer of mussels served with a verte sauce. Wanting to make this at home I scoured the Internet looking for a recipe. Although this is not Chef Althea’s recipe, it is similar to hers. The boldly flavored sauce is made with lots of fresh herbs, garlic and anchovies. In this version, the garlic is blanched to create a more subtle flavor that won’t overpower the mussels. You should have plenty of leftover mussel broth to sop up with crusty baguette or make soup or other sauces.

Bon Appetit! Make eating an adventure.

Grilled Mussels with Salsa Verde

Makes 12 servings

Salsa Verde

6 medium cloves garlic, unpeeled

1 cup coarsely chopped fresh parsley

4 anchovy fillets

2 tablespoons capers, rinsed

2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil or mint or 1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon

1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest

2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

1/4 teaspoon salt

Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Mussels

3 pounds mussels, cleaned

1 cup dry white wine

3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

2 tablespoons butter

To prepare salsa place garlic in a small saucepan and cover with 1/2 inch of cold water. Bring to a boil over high heat. As soon as the water boils, drain, add 1/2 inch of water to the pan and bring to a boil again. Drain and rinse under cold water until cool enough to handle. Peel and coarsely chop.

Place the garlic, parsley, anchovies, capers, basil (or mint or tarragon) and lemon zest in a food processor or blender. With the motor running, slowly add oil until just blended. The sauce should still have a little texture. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.

Place mussels in a Dutch oven (or other large pot) along with wine, parsley and butter. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium, cover tightly and cook, stirring once or twice, until the mussels open, 4 to 6 minutes. Transfer the mussels to a large bowl with a slotted spoon. Discard any unopened mussels. Pour the broth through a fine-mesh sieve and set aside.

Preheat grill to medium-high or position a rack in upper third of oven and preheat broiler.

Line a baking sheet (one that will fit on the grill if grilling) with about 1/2 inch of rock salt, coarse salt or loosely crumpled foil to make a base for the mussels. (This will prevent them from tipping over.) When cool enough to handle, remove the top shell from each mussel. Loosen the meat from the shell with a paring knife or spoon. Place the mussels in their half shells on the prepared baking sheet. Add a scant teaspoon of the reserved broth to each, then top with a generous dollop of salsa verde. (Refrigerate or freeze the remaining mussel broth for another use.)

Just before you are ready to serve, place the baking sheet of mussels on the grill or under the broiler and heat until the salsa begins to bubble and the mussels are heated through, about 5 minutes on the grill, 3-5 minutes under the broiler. Serve immediately.

Adapted from EatingWell.com.

Randall welcomes your food questions and research suggestions. She can be reached at 503-636-1281 ext. 100 or by email at brandall@lakeoswegoreview.com. Follow her on Twitter @barbrandallfood.

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