October 4, 2010
One of my all time favorite meals is brunch. It is such a delicious combination of foods from all courses coming together in perfect harmony. Everything from eggs and pancakes to bacon, roast beef, shrimp, pastas, desserts and more make it onto the table. Beyond that, there is usually a wide selection of juices, coffees, cocktails, beers, spirits, and usually mimosas; the classic brunch drink of orange juice and champagne.
I do love champagne, but honestly the classic mimosa leaves something to be desired. It always ends up a bit to sharp, and unless you are using very expensive sparkling wine, a bit to tart. Ah ha, beer to the rescue. Here is one of my most favorite beer cocktails that people are always shocked, and then astounded by; the Blanch de Chambly Mimosa! It is smoother, creamier, has a soft vanilla and warm spice character to it, and just compliments orange juice better than champagne can. Read on for the directions, and I dare you to try it! Read the rest of this entry »
September 23, 2010
CraftBeer.com is a pretty remarkable resource for everything beer. They publish news, stories, lessons, guides to beer and enjoying beer, local events, beer and food pairings, and more. One of my favorite sections though is the recipe list. Not homebrew recipes, but cooking with beer recipes. The most recent post caught my attention; Amber Ale Donuts… MMMmmmm. I will be making these very soon and will post my results. I can’t wait!
September 23, 2010
Recently there has been a slew of Craft beer videos all resonating the same message about how much we love craft beer. Most of them are great, but absurdly repetitive uttering “I am a craft beer drinker” over and over again from different people at different angles. It was refreshing then to see the newest Craft Beer promotional video for the New York Craft Beer Week. This video is totally original, unique, and pretty awesome. I don’t think anyone has done a beer promotional video like this before. Hats off to ya guys. Oh, and NY Craft Beer week is going to be crazy! September 24th through October 3rd. If you are in New York, go get some great beer!
September 16, 2010
The Largest Beer Festival in North America, the Great American Beer Festival, Starts TODAY in Denver Colorado. I am madly jealous of everyone going to the fest to enjoy some of the best beers that the world has to offer – but I will be there one day! The GABF is also totally sold out, all 3 days will be packed to the fills with beer loving enthusiasts. There is a brewing competition, food and beer expos, meet the brewers pavilions, judging stations, and tons and tons of great beer! A lot of breweries even brew special one-off batches just for the show… *sigh*… One day! Next week I will post details on all the winning beers and find out who is crowned best of the fest!
September 16, 2010
On Wednesday September 22nd during Toronto Beer Week the Beer Bistro will be hosting a tasting of 4 Lost Abbey Beers and 2 Port Brewing Beers for $25. Both of these Californian Breweries have made a prominent name for themselves amongst brewers and beer lovers. Their products perfume with heritage an passion, and are filled with life and excellence.
The Lost Abbey Beers Features will be the Carnevale (dry hopped saison at 6.5%), Avant Garde (Biere de Garde style malty beer at 7%), Red Bard Ale (a spicy farmhouse ale with roots in rustic Southern Belgium at 6.7%), and the Lost and Found (a trappist inspired Abbey Ale at 7.5%). The 2 Port Brewing beers are the Old Viscosity (nick named the big nasty, this is a 10.5% stout/barleywine/old ale that needs to be tried to be understood) and the Older Viscosity (A bourbon barrel aged version of the Old Viscosity that is up to 12.5%).
September 14, 2010
The Stone Brewing Co. does many things that makes me wish I lived in Escondido California, where the brewery is located. If its not just for their beers, its the festivals, the brew pub, the events, specialty and collaboration beers, and the sheer passion and enthusiasm for beer that the whole teem exudes. One of my favorite projects that they have which has been running since 2002 is the Vertical Epic Ale Series. Each year starting on 02’02’02 (ie. February 2nd, 2002) Stone releases a new beer intended to be aged until 12’12’12 (December 12, 2010), at which time they should be enjoyed ranging from a fresh beer to a 10 year old bottle. Read the rest of this entry »
August 31, 2010
If I’m not travelling Europe drinking great beer, at least one of my friends is. My bud Calvin is doing exactly that, so I figured that I would help him out and point him in the right direction of some amazing beer. In this part of his trip he will be in one of the world’s ultimate beer havens in the Czech Republic, and the not so beer infamous Switzerland. Although I’m sure he will be occupied with the sites, and friends and other festivities in both locations, the man has got to drink, so why not enjoy the good stuff? Read the rest of this entry »
August 25, 2010
One of the most remarkable things about beer is how well it can compliment or contrast with food and create a perfect pairing. I always try to recommend food and beer pairings, or beer and cheese pairings to people, but I am often met with a lot of resistance. So many people are still so focused on pairing wine with food and cheese that they can’t see beyond the vinyard. Others only know of commodity grade beers, and of course those are terrible pairings – they are not beers designed for flavor.
Real beer though; real beer with ripe and distinct flavors and aromas, unique textures and ranges of flavor can create food pairings that can not be rivaled by any beverage. Not even wine! I just happen to be doing some cooking the other day, and took advantage of the opportunity to write about this perfect pairing. The Dogfish Head 60 Minute IPA and a Spicy Asian Stirfry. Read the rest of this entry »
August 24, 2010
A few weeks ago I was in the mood to do some beer cooking (as usual) and whipped up a Spaghetti Squash with Veal Meatballs, Unibroue Maudite and San Marzano Tomato Sauce. I’ll tell you this much, it was delicious! So delicious in fact, than Uniboue has just posted it in the recipe section of their website! Thanks Unibroue! It should be no surprise by now that I love Unirboue’s beers, and the Maudite is for sure among my favorites. Next us I am going to find something spicy to make with the Fin du Monde!
August 20, 2010
My love and passion for real beer… In video form.! Read the rest of this entry »
August 18, 2010
The Golden Tap Awards open their doors at the BeerBistro this Saturday, August the 21st at 4pm in Toronto. This is really an amazing opportunity to enjoy some of the best beer that Ontario has to offer at one of the best beer bars in Ontario. Breweries will be brining they flagship beers as well as one-off beers to sample and will be fighting for the best-beer-of-the-ceremony award. The Bistro clears our the dinning room and sets up sampling stations, so all you have to do is walk in, buy some sampling tokens and use them on beer or food to your pleasure. The choices are endless.
If you are a beer fanatic already, or are just starting to appreciate real beer, this is the event to get you going. Beer media, brewers, and lovers alike will be flooding the bistro – it is always a great event. See you there!
August 4, 2010
Not only is beer a wonderful pairing with food, but it can also be a wonderful ingredient to incorporate in your cooking. Real beer has a distinct range of flavors that few other beverages can match, and certain dishes simply call out to a certain flavor.
A spaghetti squash has been sitting in my pantry for a week or so now. I was getting sick of seeing it there, so I decided to finally cook it. If you have never had spaghetti squash before, it is exactly what it sounds like. After 40 minutes in the oven this squash’s flesh will fork into strands of spaghetti like vegetable noodles. Its a low carb, and light way to replace your pasta but still get the pasta sauce! It also gave me an idea for a new pasta sauce, one with San Marzano tomatoes and Unibroue’s Maudite! Read the rest of this entry »
July 30, 2010
Slowly but surely people all over the world are realizing the pleasures of pairing food and beer. More and more restaurants are featuring craft beer on their menus, pubs are springing up that exclusively cook and pair their dishes with beer, and people are starting to bring bottles of beer to dinner parties realizing that a good Belgian Dubbel will match that succulent roast beef better than most any Merlot can.
But its still a new world, and as people open themselves into this vast world of flavor that is real beer it is important to have a guide along the way so that you can make informed choices about how to pair beer with food properly. The Brewers Association has created an easy quick reference guide that briefs you on the flavor characteristics of a beer, what glass to serve it in, at what temperature, and what meats, cheeses and deserts it would work well with. Download a copy here, it is a great guide to real flavor.
July 5, 2010
Yes its true, after thousands of years of research we finally have unlocked the secret; beer and pizza is an amazing combination! Wow, I know, we all knew this before. But I think people often take pizza and beer both for granted. We get so used to ordering delivery pizza and drinking any cold beer with it that we forget that both beer and pizza have a huge range of flavors that can be married in so many different ways!
The best way to test this is by grabbing a few unique and delicious beers, maybe one you know quite well, and one you have never had, then go ahead and create a pizza yourself! Pizza is really easy to make, and when you are doing it at home, you have limitless opportunities to incorporate any flavor you like! Read the rest of this entry »
June 14, 2010
There is a smattering of resources on the internet today for anyone looking for recipes, pairing suggestions, or any wide range of serving suggestions. Now though there is a beer authority on the subject coming straight from the Brewers Association. CRAFTBEER.com offers a wide range of resources for people interested in learning more about beer and its enjoyment. But now they also offer a series called 30 Days 30 Pairings where each day a specific dish is discussed, and then several Craft Beer pairing options are also discussed.
This is not only a great way to try some amazing pairings, but its a great way to get out an learn more about craft beer, artisan food, and how to pair them yourself. With the huge amount of amazing craft beer available in North America, and the world, the combinations are endless.