SEPTEMBER 3, 2014   Read Mary’s Vindulge blog here or below.


Let’s talk about vodka shall we?

Why not? Kids are back in school and folks are already talking about cooler weather and heartier food… in other words, the F word — fall! This whole fall business makes me uneasy since I’m a little obsessed with summer and don’t want to see it go (ever!). Vodka cocktails, like the one below, are a way to make it feel like summer year-round. And because we’re talking about vodka today I wanted to introduce you to a new vodka producer on the block.

Founded in 2011 Rolling River Spirits is a small family-owned and operated craft distillery located here in Portland, Oregon. Run by the Rickard family (Tim, Rick, and Joan), the company focuses on artisan spirits using fresh organic ingredients.

I had the opportunity to meet the family earlier this summer and check out their newly opened tasting room located in Portland’s Distillery Row to see what they have going on.

The small facility is home to hand-built stills, production equipment, and a quaint tasting room where you can enjoy their current offering.

At the time of my visit they were only making Vodka, with plans to soon release a Gin and Whiskey.

The Vodka ($25), made from wheat in a small reflux column still, is smooth with a spice kick that hits you at the end. A nice vodka to use in your favorite vodka based cocktails. Continue reading

Victory (Ode to McQueen) oils and enamel on canvas by Jason Phelps
Victory (Ode to McQueen) oils and enamel on canvas by Jason Phelps

Jason Phelps presents “Sojourn”; a collection of work pairing glances of the human form with the designs of nature.  His work ranges from figurative to abstract while employing both traditional and found media.  He is a transplant from Southern Oregon and enjoys the creative process of making and teaching art.   His experience of growing up around the mountains and rivers of Southern Oregon helped to develop his instinct to wander, collect, and create. He aims to layer his work with both material and meaning; in addition, Jason hopes that his work will encourage the viewer to contemplate our relationship with the intelligence of the Earth, animals, and stars.  As he states in his statement for Sojourn:

We are not outside nature. We are part of the great events which occur all around us;  whether beneath our feet or in our night sky.

His work can be seen at