o u R s T O R Y
The spirit of Multnomah Farms is paradoxically both quite old and rather new. It was the summer of 2014 when Sarah took Multnomah farm’s founder, Tobin Dane, to northern Italy and Brunnenburg in South Tyrol. Sarah lived at the castle a decade ago as it is home to the Ezra Pound Centre for Literature and a robust farm-to-table community model. Brunnenburg has long attracted a steady stream of scholars and inquisitive minds impassioned by poetry and sustainable agriculture. Sarah and Tobin sat down to Sunday tea with Mary de Rachewiltz (Ezra Pound’s daughter), and Mary poised an important question, what happened to the spirit of America, the spirit of ‘76?
For Tobin, it was the perfect culmination of his Portland years, which he had spent exploring the Pacific Northwest James Beard Award Winners, and the food as medicine movement.
At Brunnenburg surrounded by artists, scholars, thinkers, and farmers, collectively nourished by local and organic food, exchanging ideas across the table, he was struck with an overwhelming sense of place. It was there that Tobin resolved to recreate that same feeling through a space of his own making, and embody the spirit of ‘76.
On July 4th, two years later, , an uncultivated piece of land on the southwestern side of idyllic Sauvie Island appeared in Tobin’s inbox. As he walked the land he recalled memories of Brunnenburg and visions of what we now know as Multnomah Farms. Tobin purchased the property and began developing the farm and its vital support system within the year.