I'm pretty excited about my first story in Food & Wine, about Dana Frank's beguiling new natural-wine-focused restaurant, Dame.
Reporting this meant I got to know the Oregon winemakers who are on the menu at Dame, as well as their wines. Five of the winemakers were at the dinner: Kelley Fox (of Kelley Fox Wines), Dan Rinke (Johan), Chad Stocks (Minimus and Omero), Steven Thompson (Analemma), and Scott Frank (Bow & Arrow), Dana's husband.
My story is not available online yet, but here's a tease:
Things can get geeky when you hang out with natural-wine makers. Conversation flits from how much VA, or volatile acidity, a wine should have, to why Pinot Gris ought to be turned into a red rather than a white. Opinions fly. Cursing is compulsory. And, if you've opened a half dozen of their bottles, you're in for a rollicking good time.
On a recent night at Dame, sommelier Dana Frank's new natural-wine-focused restaurant in Portland's Concordia neighborhood, she'd gathered her winemaker friends for a spring feast paired with their best vintages. "Yes, these are really unique, interesting wines," said Frank as she popped open a bottle of Bow & Arrow's Melon, a supercrisp, golden Loire Valley varietal made by her husband, Scott Frank, who was at the other end of the table. "But they're also really delicious."
Keep reading in the April issue of Food & Wine, pg. 83.