I drive home in a car reeking of truffle, thinking about this strange underground fungus that is worshipped by so many. It seems crazy, but it’s also exciting. Fungus fans can discover new species and maybe even get one named after them. Europe’s culinary tradition has a serious challenge on its hands. And people in Oregon can eat and drink themselves sick with world-class truffles and Pinot, if they choose.
The next morning, my plane takes off from Portland’s airport, and, as if on cue, an unmistakable waft of Oregon black truffle starts seeping out of the overhead compartment and permeates the aircraft cabin with aromas of coconut, chocolate, and coffee.