BOOK’S FOODIE: Portland Pepper Sauce Company “Fresanero Pepper Sauce” Review


As a resident of the Pacific Northwest, I try to keep up with an awareness of some of the new food items that are being made available, but it’s close to impossible. As someone who wants to move to the Portland, Oregon area, I’ve been trying to keep tabs with some of the items that are of interest to me, be it food carts, doughnuts, or pies. I also love hot sauce, and one that I have yet to try has been given a review by Bill Moore, who reviews hot sauces from across the country as they come in, everything from “Bhut Kisser” to “Rectum Ripper XXX”, so his tolerance level for the super hot stuff is super high. For this video, he reviews the Fresanero Pepper Sauce variety made by the Portland Pepper Sauce Company, who currently have three different levels of hot sauce to choose from. One of the benefits of the internet is being able to buy hot sauces from any town/city/region that you want, although it is great to go into a local market and just pick and choose what may be available near you. Is the Fresanero Pepper Sauce worthy of attention? Have a look.

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SOME STUFFS: Cascadia.fm announce sale and end of network

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A year, a month, and a day after I made the announcement of Cascadia.fm‘s debut to Portland, Oregon and the rest of the world, it seems the internet broadcast network will be closing up shop in its current motif.

Cascadia.fm founder Robert Wagner made the announcement through Twitter that the network has been sold to a company in Southern California. By doing this, Cascadia.fm will now be a new company with completely new shows, and broadcasting from California. None of the programming that is currently on the channel will be there, including Knit Happens, Cort & Fatboy, Unibash Radio, and the show that gave the network its life, Portland Sucks. Cascadia.fm will become a new company under new ownership.

This has caused a bit of a panic amongst listeners and supporters in Portland, the Pacific Northwest, and judging from the comments on the announcement page, in various spots around the world, with many asking about what will become of their favorite shows. Here is what is known:

  • Cascadia.fm as we know it will end its live stream and broadcasts effective immediately on Friday, November 18th, at 5pm.
  • The status of all shows currently presented by Cascadia.fm are now “free to roam”. If you follow some of these shows, you will find out the status of each one from their creators.

    Wagner made a comment on his own blog that Portland Sucks will definitely continue in podcast form, and only as a podcast. A few other shows have announced that they plan on continuing in some form. Bottom line is, everything that is been under the Cascadia.fm umbrella will no longer be. Take care, time of your life, good riddance, right? In a way yes.

    Portland Sucks began under its own entity, a podcast that was a way to simply get some thoughts out. That show would become a part of the Small Plate Radio Network, and then came PDX.fm. It would spawn PDX.am, but then the .am part shut down. PDX.fm evolved into Cascadia.fm and now we’re… here. While Wagner plans to keep Portland Sucks going, his future endeavors are unknown. Or at least he plans on saying more when he’s ready to reveal something of interest. He did say that Portland Sucks co-host Sabrina Miller may not be coming back “after the transition is made due to her increasingly busy schedule.” Miller has become one of the network’s primary faces and voices, with the lady known as SabMil to some (and for a select view, Luscious Duvet) becoming a personality on a network that apparently ended up with no personalities. Maybe it didn’t, or that’s a way of saying that Miller, Wagner, and everyone involved in the network were simply being themselves, and not playing the role or being fake for anyone.

    I think that’s what attracted me to their shows. I’m someone who would still like to move to the Portland area, and because of my curiosity as to what kind of podcasts were being down in the city, as a way to find persons, places, and things that were similar to my own, I found Portland Sucks. It sounds like the conversation I might have at a record store, book store, doughtnut mansion, a park, simply people shooting the shit and not being afraid to say what they want to say. I’ve listened to shows throughout the last few years, and I keep on asking myself “why am I not hanging out with these fuckers?” It may not have been their intention, but Cascadia.fm created shows that made the listener feel welcome, like old friends and family members. Or maybe that family member that you didn’t think you’d ever see, but you dealt with their crap. I am a fan, and whatever the future has in store for Portland Sucks, Wagner, Miller, and everyone else, I would like to remain a fan, whether it’s in audio form or otherwise.

    There have been a number of changes in the years I have been listening, and none of them could be predicted. I had posted a comment on their website, saying that my interests are merely selfish because I want to hear more. Cascadia.fm in its current form will be coming to an end, but there will be more. What that “more” will be is unknown, at least for now.

    Cascadia.fm will be doing one last week of streaming before the plug is pulled on November 18th at 5pm Pacific/8pm Eastern. As an early Thanksgiving present, I would like to say thank you for the shows and podcasts you have offered as a collective. I know there was a lot of hard work, time, and dedication involved, but please know that all of your work was never without support and gratitude. With liberty and blumpkins for all… thank you.

  • PODCAST: Suck It #164, where my “assassination” of Def Leppard becomes a topic

    I’m a fan of a podcast created in Portland, Oregon called Suck It™, which is broadcast everyday on an internet station called Cascadia.fm. As I was listening to this morning’s show, it was a surprise to hear that a topic I had discussed on Twitter was becoming a topic of discussion. Then to add to this, I was mentioned in the show.

    My tweet simply said this. I will record Late Night With Jimmy Fallon in the morning after it airs, so it catches the last minute or so of The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. On this particular night, Def Leppard were performing “Pour Some Sugar On Me”. I used to like the song 24 years ago, I bought Hysteria and all seven of the singles released in the U.S. (ooh), but on Leno, the band looked ragged and didn’t sound too good either. Granted, these guys are not the same men from 30 years who did “High’N’Dry”, “Hello America”, or “Let It Go”, but it lead me to say this:

    Def Leppard performed at the end of Leno last night. I’m watching it now and wow, it’s as if watching clay ash trays being placed in a kiln.

    My tweet was replied to by Suck It™ host Robert Wagner, and that was that. Or so I should. A few minutes before Suck It™ was to air this morning, Wagner likes to tweet a preview of some of the discussions. One of them would apparently be: Def Leppard. Oh no.

    The show begins, and that’s when Wagner, co-host Sabrina Miller and new show producer Jeff Peart went in. I am now the official assassin of Def Leppard. To hear what happened and everything else that goes on with this great podcast, download Suck It™ show #164 by clicking to this page.

    If there’s ever a chance I could sit in during an episode of Suck It™ when I am back in Portland, I’d love an opportunity to do so. As for the mention in the show and on the website, I offer these kind words from Joe Elliott himself:

    TV SHOW REVIEW: “Portlandia” (IFC)

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    The buzzword up here in the Pacific Northwest has been the new show in IFC starring Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein called Portlandia, based on the people and things found in and within Portland, Oregon. With an interest in wanting to move to Portland, I was interested to see what it was about.

    From reading a number of articles and blogs, and hearing podcasts in Portland, it seemed people were either afraid of how Portlandia would show Portland, leery of how embarrassing it might make the city and its residents, while others could care less. The hate was strong, especially with excerpts of the show that could be found, but I think it was nothing more than a proud city who did not want to be looked at as or treated like animals in a zoo. Is Portlandia an example of the unique quirks that Portland does have? Yes, but not all of Portland is like that. “The dream of the 90s is alive in Portland” is what the introduction to the show says, so immediately one is meant to look at the characters and see them as what exactly? 30- and 40- somethings who want to fix the errors of what they went through in the last 20 years? People who felt the past was better? Citizens who wish to live life pre-grunge, pre-hip-hop as a corporate entity, pre-gaming revolution, pre-internet, pre-apps, pre-digital, pre-…cum? It may seem like that from the outside, and I say that as an outsider myself, but watching the show and believing these things will only make you ask one question: what the hell is Portland all about?

    For one, Portland is a large metropolitan city with its share of hippies. However, you will also find preppies, hipsters, gangsters, senior citizens, swingers, conservatives, dope fiends, teabaggers, foodies, raw food enthusiasts, and a little bit of everything. You can also find these things in Seattle, San Francisco, Detroit, and every other city Huey Lewis mentioned in the last verse in “The Heart Of Rock’N’Roll”. So why is Portland the hot city of discussion of the moment? I think it’s because it’s a large city whose talent and resources have remained untapped, and the fear is that if the country taps PDX’s ass, it’ll turn into the woman Common rapped about in “I Used To Love H.E.R.”, where she will end up being worn out and torn, but still able to return to the place she calls home. This isn’t to suggest that Portland wants to remain in the past, although shades of the past can be found throughout the city and its various sections. As a record collector, I remember a few years ago when Portland was called “the last untapped vinyl destination”, which comes from young college kids who want to discover a format they didn’t grow up with, and an older generation who found no need to replace a format that they were happy with. Perhaps that’s the perception some people have of the city, the idea that it’s not Miami, it’s not Dallas, it’s not Chicago, it’s not San Francisco. The city of Portland, Oregon is known by name, but very little is known by people outside of the Pacific Northwest, other than how quirky or “weird” it makes itself out to be. Yet within that quirkiness and weird vibes is a sense of wanting to be a Portland resident because the people and the communities feel that the standard of living is very good, even when times are rough, and while I’m only one episode into the show, I think Portlandia is going to show some of the many things that makes Portland worth celebrating, even if some feel it’s unnecessary mockery. Then again, the show was created by Fred Armisen, which obviously means comedy, even if some are not willing to laugh at themselves.

    The show is based around different scenarios and storylines, so that Armisen and Brownstein will portray different characters from scene to scene. One scene may show them being overly conscious about the food they consume, while another scene may have them as employees at a women’s book shop. The one thing that I did like was when they showed Armisen’s character overdosing on living in a digital world, and some may thing Portland and being digital is an oxymoron. Truth of the matter is that Portland has a healthy and diverse blogging community, and has been internet savvy for years. There is also a tech community that looks at some of the innovations being done in Portland and the rest of Oregon, some of which is discussed at Rick Turcozy‘s Silicon Florist website. In a recent issue of Portland Monthly there was an article covering the best doctors in the city, while talking about how Portland could take part in becoming a microcosm of what the country’s health care system should be. The city is known for being a mecca of bicyclists, but it’s also encouraging people to think better and smarter about how they travel in and out of the city, with discussions of a forthcoming transportation safety summit producing a number of pros and cons.

    Of course, you can also celebrate Portland by taking advantage of a pedestrian-friendly city by discovering the many stairs of the city in The Portland Stairs Book. If you’re unshaven and proud, take part or become a spectator in the West Coast Beard & Mustache Championships. If you want someone to fondle your nether regions, there’s a map for that. Portlandia represents all of this and none of this, so why does it matter?

    Let’s be real. The city of Portland, Oregon might seem weird to some, but those people are probably happy with who they are and what they’ve become. Portland is not for them. Those who seek something different and unique may or may not find it in Portland. Truth be told, it can be found anywhere and everywhere. You just have to look, and it just so happens Portland occupies a lot of searchers, even those who are content. Maybe the things they search for seemed varied and different from what you’re looking for, but respect the search. It’s a nerdy city, but that’s a dorky way of saying that this city is well read. I’m a Book, I’m well read, so… Portland seems like a perfect place to be, right? I haven’t lived there yet, but I’d like for it to be a place I will want to call home, and hopefully I will very soon. In the first episode, I see a sense of the people that are there, and it’s not just the characters Armisen and Brownstein portray. Look at the older lady in the library, that’s Portland. Look at the bearded man who has been hiding in the library since 1979 while taking part in a hide & seek contest, that’s Portland.

    Maybe want to discover Portland because it’s seen as an intelligent city that isn’t afraid to play the fool, even though they don’t want anyone to call them fools or being foolish. Maybe Portland simply wants people to not poke fun or criticize, but if you’re going to stare, put on a souvenir T-shirt and participate. I also think that Portland has been overshadowed by Seattle for decades, even when Seattle wasn’t the coffee-drinking, tech-savvy city it is today. Upon moving to Washington State in 1984, I remember when it was possible to drive through downtown Seattle and see small corner stores, hear the breeze, and be able to walk on the street for blocks without being hit. With Seattle being home to a number of fisheries, another distinct I remember about some parts of downtown Seattle was how it smelled like a fishing boat. Growing up in Honolulu, I know the sights, sounds, and smells all too well. The Seattle music scene in 1984 was active but bands showed support for other bands, and some bands probably featured members from other bands, so a group of 12 people might have 5 bands ready to go on tour together in a stinky van. The Kingdome was an ugly beast, but people loved the beauty of the ugliness. In 1987 while on The Joshua Tree tour, U2 didn’t play in Seattle, leaving the defunct magazine The Rocket to ask why a big band like them can play San Francisco one night, drive up the West Coast and completely miss Portland and Seattle by heading to Vancouver, British Columbia in Canada? From that point on, it seemed the music community did everything to strengthen itself within themselves, and in time people discovered the unique qualities of their music.

    Meanwhile, Portland remained the city on the I-5, not really quiet or dormant but ignored by people who were entralled by the big and bright lights of Seattle, the city of dreams in the late 80’s and early 90’s. Which brings to mind what Portlandia suggests: what exactly was the dream of the 90’s? Or is it about going back to a time before the world seemed to collapse in front of our eyes? Is Portland a utopia? Is it a town of music makers, and in the words of Willy Wonka, are Portlanders the dreamers of the dream? By being exposed to the possibility of being overexposed, will the unicorn magic of Portland slowly fade away? If anything, that may be the biggest fear of all, that Portland in the early 10’s will turn into what Seattle became in the 1990’s: overcrowded with Californians looking to change the ways of the city or adapting the city’s qualities and making themselves look like a fool.

    It’s possible that this review has less to do with Portlandia the show and more about the city of Portland and what it represents to an outsider who wants to play in their reindeer games. Nonetheless, love or hate, Portland is there to sample and experience. If the show moves you to pay a visit, they’ll be more than happy to welcome you.

    (Portlandia airs Friday nights at 10:30 Eastern/7:30 Pacific on IFC. While the show is produced by Saturday Night Live‘s Lorne Michaels,the show is based on the video projects Armisen and Brownstein used to do together when Brownstein wasn’t recording/touring with Sleater-Kinney. Consider it a high-budget independent video project, and one that works quite well in the context of what the city represents to its residents.)

    SOME STUFFS: Internet radio takes its first sip of beer with the introduction of Cascadia.fm

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    If you have a favorite internet radio station or radio show, or happen to love the wide range of different programming that is available out there, I would like to introduce you to a new network that I feel will be a force to reckon with this decade, one that I feel will become your daily listening habit. Friends, get familiar with Cascadia.fm.

    Cascadia.fm is the new version of what was PDX.fm, a “channel” based in Portland, Oregon that is dedicated to the views, opinions, hobbies, and interests of people in Portland, done by people in Portland. It is a home grown effort that looked to find an audience with their brand of humor, wit, and passion, and in time would find it not only in Portland, but throughout the Pacific Northwest, the West Coast, the United States, and in small pockets around the world. It was able to do this with a series of shows that are diverse as the people behind them. As attention towards Portland grows on a national and international scale, PDX.fm felt it was time to take on the challenges of a growing audience by letting people know why their city can be an influence for the rest of the nation, and perhaps the world. In other words, now that they have a loyal audience, it’s time to get to the people who aren’t listening but need to.

    The demise of PDX.fm is only in name, but now transformed into Cascadia.fm, they are now expanding their scope to Seattle and Vancouver, British Columbia. It will be the premiere internet radio network for the Pacific Northwest, all of “Cascadia” if you will, and programs pertaining to these areas will be added very soon (as I’m looking at the new site, i can see the potential of dedicated channels with programming dedicated to each region). Take a look at their daily schedule and you’ll find a show that will suit your interests. Cascadia.fm also hosts a number of events from movie showings to trivia contests, and even an annual Baconfest that I had the pleasure of visiting for the first time this past August. What will also be of interest in the coming weeks is an emphasis on applications for the iPhone and other forms of gadgetry, along with apps for other internet broadcasters that they plan on revealing soon. In other words, they are becoming more than just a network that broadcasts shows and archives podcasts, they are dabbling in multimedia by talking about it and creating it.

    Cascadia.fm is becoming an internet station that is expanding on the multitasking it has become known for, and by doing so, it is shining the light on the tech-savvy community of Portland that are helping to keep its city vibrant alive, while keeping true to its unique spirit. It’s talk radio, it’s good radio, it’s quality radio, but you can hear it on your mobile device, in the car, on your laptop or desktop. It looks to the future, and they’re welcoming you to listen.

    PDX.fm showed what a group of creative people can do when they put their minds together. Cascadia.fm is simply a new pair of shoes, and its ready to take its first step into the great wide open. From a “small plate” to a gourmet buffet, they are expanding their pallets and hope that others will join them. I call myself a fan because I enjoy the shows and the sense of community I think exists amongst everyone on the network. I want to spread the love by letting you know about them and if it moves you, spread the word. Cascadia.fm: they will thank and if you’re lucky, spank you later.

    RECORD CRACK / VIDEO: “Don’t Move Here” episode #7 looks at record and tape labels/stores in PDX

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    Just discovered a video called Don’t Move Here: Inside Portland’s Music Scene, a semi-sarcastically titled video series that looks at the greatness of Portland, Oregon while telling people to not ruin what’s already there. The seventh show takes a look at a unique section of Portland that is the home of a number of record and cassette labels, continuing the indie spirit its music scene has had for years. As for that music scene, some of its contributors/participants speak on what makes Portland unique and perhaps not so unique.

    The video was created by Wieden+Kennedy, who feature a lot of interesting audio and video content on their site. Sample a few. To see the previous six installments of the Don’t Move Here series, go here.

    SOME STUFFS: What’s up? Say wassup to What’s Up!


    Is it a pool party, or just three guys who want to mess up your head with good sounds? This is What’s Up, a group featuring Robby Moncrieff, Brian Marshall and Teddy Briggs who are described as having long-term goal spans beyond boundaries typically associated with a rock and roll music group. An interest in remixing and rewriting, as well as recording (and rerecording), has forced What’s Up to become multi-faceted, serving not only as the title of the ‘rock group,’ but as a production entity.

    They started in Sacramento, California but now call PDX (that’s Portland, Oregon for you non-Pacific Northwesterners) home, and want to be able to present a sound that is as unpredictable as anything anyone has ever heard. Their debut record, Content Imagination, is scheduled for release on May 19th through Obey Your Brain (the LP can be pre-ordered through CD Universe), and you can take a preview of the album by downloading for free a song they call “Harper” (7.6mb).

    If you are in the Portland area at the end of June, What’s Up will be performing at this year’s Superfest.