In Part 1 of Hashcapades – It Takes a Village, I explained how I became certifiably hash-obsessed and why I was suddenly catapulted into action, like a trebuchet gone wild, hurling post after post onto the Internet. In Part 2, I’d like to explore how my hashcapades at local restaurants and greater awareness prepared me for the arduous process of publishing my cookbook, Hashcapades: The Art of the Perfect Hash Adventure. Would I have what it takes or would I go absolutely mad and become the village idiot?
One way I started to engage the village was by going to local restaurants in Portland to try as many types of hash as I could. Portland, I would come to discover, had dozens and dozens of restaurants serving hashes of all colors and stripes. But where to begin? By starting at the beginning and finding a place that served Smoked Trout Hash! As luck would have it (I like to think that hash gods with Norse names propelled me), Lisa and I discovered the Swedish Broder Cafe and their wonderful rendition of Smoked Trout Hash at the end of 2010.
My initial posts were, um, simple rocks that hit the castle wall and bounced off. I had to amp it up if I were to breach the castle, so to speak. I needed an elite squad of hashcapaders that would help me on my quest for World Hash Domination! And so by the spring of 2011, I began to invite local twitter followers and friends to hashcapades at restaurants in Portland and Seattle. My first guests included Paul Gerald, author of Breakfast in Bridgetown: The definitive guide to Portland’s favorite meal, and Elizabeth Fuss, an avid foodie and blogger who ultimately wrote a wonderful guest post for Hall Street Grill. And so hashcapades at restaurants began.
“Okay, Clark,” you interrupt. “So you got some ideas from restaurants, big deal.” Shocked (how did you get into my post?), I blurt, “No, I discovered my village had lots of wonderful, adventurous foodies that shared my passion for hash, breakfast libations and good old-fashioned socializing! Furthermore, I’ve had over 50 hashcapades in Portland, San Francisco, Seattle, Phoenix, Los Angeles, Boise and Casper,WY. These hashes represent over 35 distinct hashes.” “Wow, cool!” you enthuse is a charming way. (I’m glad you’re in my post.) In fact, look no further than Hashcapade Nirvana List for a reasonably complete summary of hashcapades at restaurants, Chez Clark, recipes from celebrity chefs and hash articles. Enjoy!
Speaking of nirvana, things were humming along by the end 2011, with major milestones achieved: Second Place – People’s Choice – Portland Bacon Takedown, mentions in New York Times Diner’s Journal Blog, and Willamette Egg Farms egg contest, starring one of my hashes, thanks to Harvest PR! With 2012 approaching, I knew it was time to publish my cookbook, but I needed a whole new class of villagers upon which to draw deep talent and inspiration. I hoped they would sign on to my vision!