Keeping the Portland Airwaves Free: Freeform Portland Radio 90.3 FM

Freeform Portland Radio

Here at Union Wine Co. we think of ourselves as more of a family than just a place of work. We try to encourage and support everyone in their passions and side projects.

Allow us to introduce Amy Carr. By day, Amy is the Logistics and Compliance/Customer Service Supervisor. She has been a part of the Union Wine Company family for about 5 years, beginning at Amity Vineyards before moving over full-time to UWCo.

When Amy was only 12 years old, her father gave her a copy of Nick Hornby’s (best) novel High Fidelity, which introduced her to a main character who is always striving to share the classic music he loves and the new bands he discovers. And so, a seed was planted…

Fast Forward to early 2015. A few of Amy’s friends decided to found Freeform Portland, an entirely independent, community-sponsored, non-profit, freeform radio station. Going live the following year, they broadcast on 90.3 and also 98.3 FM from the NE Alberta Area. Officially they are a “low-power” FM station; their radio broadcast range is only about 5 square miles, but, lucky for us, we live in the digital age so everyone can enjoy their full array of programming at FreeformPortland.org/listen.

Freeform Portland Radio

The DJs are free to play music from records, tapes, CDs or digital files. There are no commercials or talk programs. Generally, the only speaking you will hear are the DJs identifying their chosen songs during music set breaks, although there are some great “in studio” band interviews from time to time. All songs from every show are also listed on their website.

Freeform Portland Radio

Two amazing things that FFP can boast are, 1., it is absolutely 100% volunteer run, and 2., it is absolutely 100% live programming, meaning no prerecorded shows. There is a live DJ playing music in the booth 24 hours a day, 7 days a week!

Freeform Portland Radio

At the station, Amy goes by the handle DJ Stellar Luna. Her show, “Nightlight” runs on alternating Mondays from 10 PM to midnight. Amy’s playlist differs every week focusing mostly on Neo Psychedelia, New Wave, Hip-Hop and Latin. Asked what some of her favorite bands are, Amy mentioned, in no particular order:

La Femme (which she plays at least one song by during every show)
Bomba Estereo
LCD Soundsystem
Thee Oh Sees
Echo & the Bunnymen

Amy was drawn to the radio station for many of the same reasons that she was drawn to Union Wine Co.—each puts a great emphasis on authenticity and a truly meaningful reflection of the community.

Freeform Portland Radio

Freeform Portland Radio

As you might imagine, the broadcast booth is small but is filled with all sorts of amazing music, movie and cultural paraphernalia.

Freeform Portland Radio

Freeform Portland Radio

Recently we asked Amy to create our first official Spotify profile, beginning with a Union Wine Co. playlist, a constantly growing curated mix.

In addition, Amy has created playlists to match the vibe of our three labels:

UNDERWOOD (aka the party) playlist
KINGSRIDGE (aka the adult hipster) playlist
ALCHEMIST (aka the sexy) playlist

Subscribe to them all now so you have the perfect soundtrack the next time you are enjoying our wines!

Freeform Portland Radio

We want to thank Amy for sharing her time and passion with us, and allowing us a small glimpse into the amazing world of Freeform Portland. Hopefully this will inspire you to check out some of their programming.

Freeform Portland Radio

Text and Photos by David L. Reamer (@dlreamer)

(Amy’s IG is @amycoche)

Mezcal Rosérita

Underwood Rosé Mezcal Rosérita

Cinco de Mayo is Sunday and we are ready to go with our resurrected—and improved—Rosérita! We’ve updated this cocktail with our team’s favorite liquor: mezcal. If you’ve never tried mezcal, we highly recommend giving it a shot. The smokiness from the mezcal and the fresh, robust fruit flavors of our Underwood Rosé creates a balanced and tasty blended beverage.

Our favorite thing about mezcal is that it can be made from different varieties of agave, while tequila is only made from one. This allows different mezcals to have more complex and unique flavor profiles compared to tequila.

Para todo mal, mezcal, y para todo bien, también.

Cheers!

Underwood Rosé Mezcal Rosérita

Mezcal Rosérita

Serves 4

4 cups ice
10oz mezcal
6oz Underwood Rosé
4oz strawberry puree
Juice of 1 lime
Juice of half an orange
2.5 oz Green Chartreuse
1.5 oz agave nectar
10 dashes grapefruit bitters
Salt for your glass rim

Put all the ingredients together in a blender and blend until slushy. Pour into glasses with salted rims and add a lime wedge. Enjoy with friends or co-workers on a sunny afternoon.

Chefs at Home Series: BUNK’S Nick Wood

Chefs at Home Series: BUNK’S Nick Wood

Since such a large part of the Pacific Northwest culture revolves around food, we decided to start up a series here on Field Notes that features local chefs who love to drink and cook with Underwood wines. For this post, we reached out to one of the founders of the Portland institution Bunk Sandwiches, Nick Wood.

Nick was raised in Cincinnati, but really cut his teeth in New Orleans, cooking for several fine dining restaurants, including Brennans and Martinique Bistro, before relocating to Portland. Because of this, on his days off, Nick loves to return to the cuisine he feels most comfortable with, Creole. When we asked Nick to come up with a recipe using the Underwood Pinot Noir, he immediately suggested Marchand de Vin, a Creole take on a classic French sauce, literally meaning “Wine Merchant”. We had never even heard of this sauce but apparently it is a mainstay of all the best  restaurants around New Orleans.

It’s a pretty simple recipe and one that is guaranteed to knock the socks off anyone lucky enough to indulge. Make sure to enjoy with some crusty French bread and plenty of Underwood Pinot Noir!

Marchand de Vin Sauce

Marchand de Vin Sauce
(the best sauce you’ve never heard of)

** Serves 4 people **

Ingredients:

3 garlic cloves
3 shallots
4 green onions (tops reserved)
8 large cremini mushrooms
1/2 lb tasso or smoked ham
1 can Underwood Pinot Noir
1 QT beef stock
unsalted butter
salt & pepper
Tabasco
Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 lb steak, such as bavette or tri-tip

****

Dice first 5 ingredients, setting green onion tops aside for garnish.

Chefs at Home Series: BUNK’S Nick Wood

Chefs at Home Series: BUNK’S Nick Wood

Season steak well with salt and pepper. Heat a wide, heavy bottomed pot, add 2 Tbs of olive oil and sear steak on each side. Place steak on a sheet pan and finish in the oven, 5-10 minutes depending on size. Set aside to rest.

Chefs at Home Series: BUNK’S Nick Wood

Place beef stock in a small pot and reduce by half, keep warm.

Heat up the large pot again, (leaving any steak bits in the bottom), add 2 Tbs of butter and 2 Tbs of oil to the pot and sauté top five ingredients on medium heat for 7 minutes, stirring frequently so as not to burn. Season lightly with salt and pepper.

Chefs at Home Series: BUNK’S Nick Wood

Without lowering heat, slowly add the can of Underwood Pinot Noir and bring to a simmer, continuing to stir for 5 minutes.

Chefs at Home Series: BUNK’S Nick Wood

Add warmed beef stock gradually with a ladle and let liquid reduce by half, about 10 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking. Turn off heat and add 2 Tbs of butter and a generous splash of  Tabasco and Worcestershire to taste.

Chefs at Home Series: BUNK’S Nick Wood

Slice your steak, arrange on a serving platter, and cover generously with sauce. Garnish with green onion and Enjoy!

Chefs at Home Series: BUNK’S Nick Wood

And special thanks to Nick for spending his day off hanging out and sharing his culinary prowess.

Chefs at Home Series: BUNK’S Nick Wood

Text and Photos by David L. Reamer (@dlreamer)

Bubbles, Par Avion

One of our favorite (and more obscure) vintage cocktails is a slight variation on the classic daiquiri, called an Airmail. It’s a simple cocktail that packs a surprisingly impressive punch. Originating in Cuba in the 1930s, this simple mix of rum, lime and honey creates an elegant base to accentuate with ice cold bubbles. Whether pouring single cocktails or making up a batch for friends, this easy and light cocktail is always guaranteed to impress.

To help with this cocktail, we enlisted the skills of perfume maker extraordinaire and amateur mixologist Josh Meyer, founder of Imaginary Authors.

We had him make up a few cocktails and pick his favorite scent to accompany the light, fruity springtime vibe.

The Airmail

2 oz rum (we prefer the Flor de Cana 4 year)
1.5 oz honey syrup (1:1 ratio)
1 oz fresh lime juice
2 oz Underwood Bubbles

Combine the rum, honey syrup and lime juice in a shaker with plenty of ice. Shake vigorously. Strain into your favorite coup glass and top off with the Underwood Bubbles.

*********

To make the syrup, put 4 oz of honey in a heavy bottomed pot with 4 oz of water. Gently warm, constantly stirring until al the honey is dissolved.

We are big fans of Bee Local honey, brought to you by the fine folks at Jacobsen Salt Co.

Juice them limes like a boss…

Can’t forget the rum…

Follow Josh’s example and shake vigorously.

Strain, top with bubbles and Enjoy!

According to Josh, the best Imaginary Authors scent to accompany an afternoon of drinking the Airmail cocktail is Saint Julep. With notes of Tangerine, Southern Magnolia, Grisalva and Crushed Ice, this sweet and inviting scent will take you right back to the the cafes of 1930s Havana, laughing and drinking while trading war stories with a tipsy Ernest Hemingway.

Text and Photos by David L. Reamer (@dlreamer)

Union Wine Co. Life Skills: How to Shuck an Oyster

Let’s be honest. There is almost nothing that accompanies a crisp glass of Underwood Bubbles better that some ice cold, freshly shucked oysters. And being situated in the Pacific Northwest, we have year round access to some of the best oysters in the world! It’s always a treat to order oysters at a restaurant, but they make an elegant and unexpected appetizer when entertaining at home. Many people don’t consider this an option because they have never been taught the proper (and amazingly simple) technique to shuck at home.

Well, have no fear. Union Wine Co. is here to teach you the step by step of how to expertly open and clean our favorite bivalve like a seasoned pro.

All you will need is a shucker and a thick kitchen towel. For beginners we recommend the more blunt point versions with hilt guards (pictured in the center.) Once you have mastered these, you can move up to the thinner, sharper pointed shuckers. Also, we recommend starting with Netarts Oysters. They are local, delicious, very user friendly and always available at the Woodstock Fish Market where, incidentally, you can also find your favorite bottles of Union Wine.

Union Co. Life Skills: How to Shuck an Oyster

STEP ONE:

Procure a thick kitchen towel, fold longways 3 times and then roll up one side as pictured below. This will keep the oyster secure and prevent any slippage.

Union Co. Life Skills: How to Shuck an Oyster

STEP TWO:

Turn the oyster belly up. Secure the flat, rounded part of the oyster under the edge of the towel, hold firmly and gently find the small hole or “hinge” at the back of the oyster. The key word here is Gently…. (and we can’t stress this enough- opening oysters is not an act of strength or force but of gentle control…) So, very gently insert the tip of your shucker into the hinge. You may need to feel around until you get the hang of it, but trust us, it’s there.

Union Co. Life Skills: How to Shuck an Oyster
Union Co. Life Skills: How to Shuck an Oyster

STEP THREE:

Once you have the point securely in the hinge, just twist the shucker slightly back and forth until the top shell releases. As you peel back the top shell, use the shucker to separate the oyster from the muscle attaching it to the shell. Remove the top shell and set aside.

Union Co. Life Skills: How to Shuck an Oyster
Union Co. Life Skills: How to Shuck an Oyster

STEP FOUR:

Without spilling the “liquor” (the delicious briny liquid inside the oyster) gently slide the shucker underneath the oyster to separate it from the muscle attaching it to the bottom of the shell. Wipe away any grit that may be on the edge of the shell. At this point, place the oyster on a bed of rock salt or crushed ice, and repeat the steps until all oysters are shucked and ready to be enjoyed.

Union Co. Life Skills: How to Shuck an Oyster
Union Co. Life Skills: How to Shuck an Oyster

Grab a can or bottle of Underwood Bubbles and Bon Appétit!

Union Co. Life Skills: How to Shuck an Oyster

Special thanks to shucker extraordinaire Quincy Sanders, whom you can find most days shucking dozens of Oysters at Canard and his lovely girlfriend Avery Stark, who is one of the many talented front of the house folks at the brand new Portland hot spot, Bullard.

Photography and Text by David L. Reamer