While looking for an escape from the heat yesterday, I found myself browsing through the vineyards of Burgundy.
A couple of photos caught my eye.
I clicked to learn more and found my way to Sauvie Island and the charming front porch of Wild Goose Farm.
Sauvie Island is not in France, it’s located on the Columbia River 15 minutes north of Portland Oregon.
Wild Goose Farm sits on five-acres of this agricultural heaven. Deep in lush island grass, the farm is surrounded by garden patches, beehives, chicken coops, a greenhouse & a big barn. Can you say “sustainable?”
Wild Goose Farm is also home to Interior Designer Jessica Helgerson, her Eco-Architect husband Yianni Doulis and their two children.
“Tiny House” as it is often referred to, has been their home & Eco-experiment for the last several years. Their goal was to restore its original 540 square feet using mostly reclaimed materials while creating a comfortable home for their growing family.
“As part of the remodel, the worn-out roof was replaced with a green roof, planted with moss and ferns gathered along the Columbia River Gorge. The green roof offers insulation as well as a playful visual counterpoint to the traditional white cottage.” JHInteriorDesign
Clean & uncluttered best describes Jessica’s style.
“For any project, her goal is to ensure that the fundamental design and the materials are classic, long-lasting, and appropriate to the building and its period. Then she likes to layer on fresh, contemporary elements—such as lighting, furniture, and art—that feel just right for the clients and for the moment.” JHInteriorDesign
Step inside the front door and find absolute charm, pure & simple.
You have to see more of this “Tiny House!”
I’ll let MARTHA STEWART LIVING & photographer Lincoln Barbour take you on an up-close & personal tour.
Meet me back on the porch because I want to share with you a different kind of story about Wild Goose Farm.
Once a month Jessica & Yianni turn their farm into a kind of homestead. Long tables covered in white linen set the mood for evening dinners on the lawn to reflect their love of food, drink, and design.
Friends from LA, colleagues, French-speaking wine connoisseurs & families all come together for starlit evenings & four courses of some of the best food to be found.
This feast is farm-picked & requires many helping hands. Even Jessica’s daughter does her part in cutting cucumbers fresh from their garden.
And thank goodness for the barn!
For these artisanal dinners, it becomes a regular gourmet kitchen complete with a three burner camp stove! This beautiful barn also adds culinary charm & introduces Portlanders to talented newcomers and cooks not attached to traditional restaurants. Wild Goose Farm began its 2011 series with chef Thomas Boyce (below, center) who spent 15 years at LA’s famed Spago restaurant under Wolfgang Puck!
elegant oysters beneath finely grated radishes and a collection of wood-fired pizzas sporting porcinis, fava beans, and other seasonal surprises to match a honey-tinged crust.
Yianni Doulis’s chicken liver terrine (featuring his own chickens) to match Boyce’s rhubarb mustard and eye-popping spring salad, with each vegetable cut to reveal hidden beauty.
breathtaking fresh pasta pinched into beautiful packets.
expertly wood-oven-roasted salmon with skin as crispy as bacon.
The feast also included:
Yianni Doulis’s artisan cheese board accessorized by thoughtfulness, from wood-roasted cherries soaked in port and pinot noir.
And for dessert:
The chef's baker-star wife Kim Boyce prepared hand-folded rhubarb tartelettes!
Seated family-style & reflecting the bounty of the season, the feast begins.
Respect for the abundance and traditions of the region coupled with an appreciation of the playfulness and freshness of modern design prove that the landscape of Wild Goose Farm is just as important for creating a sense of place as is Jessica Helgerson’s Tiny House.
Visit Jessica Helgerson Interior Design to see her incredible portfolio & more of her family place in Burgundy.
Her firm does “Big Houses” too!
Photos & Additional Sources Courtesy of