Aloha from the beautiful island of Maui! On Monday, we had the great pleasure of visiting O’o Farms located on the slopes of Haleakala in what is referred to as upcountry Maui. The farm is located in the little town of Kula, just off of the main road and the property overlooks the valley and ocean. O’o Farm is the only true farm-to-table operation on the island and for a nominal fee, one can visit the farm and learn about their coffee, vegetables and even pick the greens to be served for lunch! It’s a nice way to spend the day in the cool, misty outdoors and an unexpected pleasure to experience fine dining in a unique island setting. Below are some images from our visit that I hope you enjoy. Mahalo for visiting and a hui ho!
It is with a heavy heart that I write this post. MIX Magazine, a food magazine published by the Oregonian, is publishing its final issue this month and they chose one of my images for the cover. MIX was so much fun to work for, not only because the assignments always focused on my favorite subject, food, but also because of the great editorial staff with which I had the pleasure of working. The photo editor I worked with on my projects was the illustrious Mike Davis, now the Alexia Foundation Chair for Documentary Photography at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University. He gave me complete freedom of approach to every story and also followed up with terrific feedback. The writer I most often worked with was Martha Holmberg, former food editor for The Oregonian, who is now busy writing cookbooks, teaching, giving talks and continuing to pursue all things food. Martha and I worked on several stories together, including one about Nick’s Italian Cafe in McMinnville, as well as another about how to make your own Nocino with green walnuts from the back yard, (and throw a neighborhood party in the process). “Hope springs eternal,” I often hear, so my hope is that I not only get to continue to work with Mike and Martha on other projects in the future, but that another food magazine based in my hometown of Portland, Oregon will spring forth in the near future.
I raise a glass to the fine people at the Oregonian and MIX! May our paths cross again in the very near future. Cheers!!!
Beer flavored ice cream? Talk about a sweet assignment! I had to re-read the email to make sure I wasn’t mistaken. One of my New York Times editors had asked me to photograph the famed Portland ice cream scoop shop Salt & Straw for the dining section. Apparently, this ice cream store was offering a six-pack of flavored ice creams made with local beer and my assignment was to photograph one of the owners, Tyler Malek, making a batch of ice cream with beer, along with details of the ice cream and some photographs of one of their stores. Salt & Straw is a great Portland food story – two young people start a business as a food cart and it takes off into the stratosphere. I’m not at all surprised after meeting Tyler and his cousin, Kim, who as of today, July 1st, have three stores in the Portland area, each one with a seemingly permanent queue around the block. All of their ice cream is made by hand and is the best you’ll have without making it yourself. The flavors they offer are unusual: combinations like Goat Cheese with Habañero and Marionberry or Blue Cheese and Pear, both of which I’ve tried and can say without reservation that they are delicious! For the New York Times piece, it turns out that the beer flavored ice cream isn’t unique to our local scoop shop, but something that can be tasted in places like San Francisco, New York and Atlanta. This short and sweet piece by writer Andrew Spear will entice you to go out and try some. With temperatures hitting in the 90’s today here in Portland, I’ll be right there as well.
Yesterday I received a stock request for some local food. As I was digging around in my archives, I was reminded about yet another reason I love Oregon – the food. For restaurant variety, quality and price, Portland is hard to beat. Of course it’s upstaged by the major cities like New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles, but we still are regularly celebrated in the national press for some of the greatest restaurants in America. However, this may not be possible without the amazing behind-the-scene scene: the farmers and fishermen that harvest and grow the bounty of Oregon. The slow food movement abounds here, and sustainability is practiced like a religion. My favorite thing to do is to visit the farmers’ market in downtown Portland on a Saturday in the summer – to marvel at the outstanding quality and peruse the amazing variety of produce, meats, cheeses and treats, then stock up for meals for the week. Here are some images from the Portland Farmers’ Market to enjoy while we wait for summer to arrive.
Castagna Restaurant in Portland, Oregon not only happens to be in my hometown, it is also one of the finest restaurants at which I’ve had the pleasure of dining. One of many things in life I’m grateful for is the fact that my husband loves to cook and has quite a talent for making everything: from dashi to demi-glace, pasta or seared duck breast with peppercorn infused, poached pears. Because of this, it’s very difficult to find a restaurant that can out-do what my amazing partner in life creates in our humble home kitchen. Castagna is the only restaurant we’ve been to together where when we sit down, we prepare for the question that always arises, “how did he do THAT?” The food at Castagna is art and is often celebrated, (and criticized), for the same reasons. However, there is one undeniable fact: you can’t eat like this anywhere else in Portland. The food at Castagna has amazing attention given to not only the quality of the ingredients, but also the beauty of them. The service is absolutely world class. The desserts, like this chocolate dish, are some of the best I’ve ever encountered, thanks to the pastry chef, Eve Kuttman. Although I love the food scene in Portland, I’ve always felt that Castagna is in a class of its own. This year, the chef Justin Woodward is receiving the recognition from the James Beard Foundation in the form of a nomination for Rising Star Chef of the Year. Congratulations Justin! Thank you for all of your creativity, hard work and delicious, incredible food.
One of my favorite photographic subjects to cover is food. I have found food to be one of the best ways to learn about a culture, explore a city, or use as an avenue to common ground with just about anyone. Food unites us in so many ways, so I’m always interested in making sure that some aspect of food is included in most of the feature travel stories that I am assigned. I’ve been extremely fortunate to have photographed two of the 20 Most Important Restaurants in America that appear in this month’s Bon Appetit Magazine. You can read the story online here. I like the way they laid out this story on their web site. Most locations have a lead image, then there are details of the food or interiors in a smaller slideshow – images that give a sense of place – in a gallery under the main photograph. For our home town pride of Portland, Andy Ricker represents, founder of Pok Pok, the Whiskey Soda Lounge and Ping, and is featured in the article. When I was working on a story about San Francisco, I was excited to cover Swan’s Oyster Depot – a classic San Francisco eatery where locals dine on some of the freshest seafood available in the city. Bon Appetit used my image to illustrate the restaurant in the story.
All images on this site are copyright © 2013 Susan Seubert and may not be used for any reason without express permission from Susan Seubert
Yet more foodie love for Portland! This author tells San Francisco to step aside, food wise. For the May 2011 issue of San Francisco Magazine, I had the great pleasure of shooting a feature about some of the food scene happening here in my hometown of Portland, Oregon. I love the color and size of the spread – San Francisco Magazine is a larger than normal book, so the images get great play. The story features the barrel aged cocktails at Clyde Common, the yummy food of Gruner, the sour beers at Cascade Brewing Barrel House and the delightfully crisp shakerato at Spella Caffe. If you haven’t already, check the story out by scrolling down online here.