Britannia Brewmasters Table (Britannia Brewing) – December 6th, 2017


On December 6th, 2017 I was able to attend the Britannia Brewmasters Table a brewmasters dinner held at Britannia Steveston.  Britannia Steveston is the restaurant portion of Britannia Brewing Company with the brewery residing in a different part of South Richmond.

On the way in we were given a welcome beer of their Adrift Hop Blonde a beer that comes in at 4.7% with an IBU of 25.  The beer had a surprising amount of flavour for a blonde and I was pretty darn impressed with it as it is not a style I usually go for.  Once everyone had arrived the dinner began.

Course 1
Seared wild harvest scallops
truffled cauliflower & fennel salami
Paired with: Blueberry Garden Ale 4.6% 2 IBU

The beer had a nice blueberry and herbal flavour with a semi sweet finish.  The scallop had some sweetness and the salami had a nice mild spice to it.  The truffled cauliflower was a nice finish.  Both were tasty but this was my least favorite of the pairings.

Course 2
Seafood bisque with yellowfin tuna tartar
Ginger Citrus
Paired with: Sirens chai saison 5.7% 22 IBU

The beer tasted of chai, citrus, saison funk with a semi sweet finish.  The tuna was light and buttery with the soup portion being full of mushroom flavour.  As weird as it may sound this was an awesome pairing

Course 3
Freerun rossdown turkey renderloin
white bean, edamama & preserved cranverries
Paired with 1: Riptide IPA 6.2% 58 IBU
Paired with 2: Belgian IPA 7.2% 60 IBU

The Riptide IPA had some juicy hops that bring in some tropical fruit and citrus with some low bitterness and herbal hops.  The Belgian IPA tastes of Belgian yeast, bubblegum, sweetness and low bitterness.  The turkey was fantastic with some nice earthy veggies on the side.  The Riptide IPA seemed to pair up quite well with this dish.

Course 4
Dark belgian chocolate covered chous a la creme
chai saison cream
Paird with 1: Forty fathoms imperial spiced porter 7.7% 30 IBU
Paired with 2: Baileys chocolate porter (Cask) 5.5% 28 IBU

The Forty fathoms imperial spiced porter had a good roasted malt flavour with chocolate, earth and rum.  The Baileys chocolate porter tasted of chocolate, baileys with sweetness in the finish.  The cask was really tasty.  The chocolate pastry was really enjoyable and both beers paired really well together.

This was one really tasty dinner and I will have to try and make it out for another one in the future.  From my understanding they hold these dinners on the first Wednesday of every Month.  I reccomend checking one out soon.

Britannia Steveston
info@bbco.ca
#250-12240 Second Ave
Richmond, B.C.
Canada
V7E3L8
604 270 9252

Goose Island Beer Company Beer Dinner (Glowbal) – June 6th, 2017


One June 6th, 2017 I was invited out to an invite only beer dinner with Goose Island Beer Company out of Chicago that was held at Glowbal restaurant in Vancouver.  This was my first time actually dining at Glowbal.  To start the night off samples of Four Star Pils were served to guests.

The dinner was hosted by the brand new Head Brewer for Goose Island Toronto Brewhouse Bernard Priest and the Executive Chef Kyle Dampsy.

This is a fine dining restaurant and the room for the dinner was decorated to match the occasion.  To start the night they brought up both Bernard Priest and Kyle Dampsy to discuss the beer and then the food.  Once the talking had finished the started to serve the first course.

First Course
Amuse Bouche
Foie Gras Sable Cookie with Strawberry Gelee Se Salt
Paired with Gillian 2016

It was nice to start dinner off with what would almost be considered a desert.  The cookie was really tasty and the sweet strawberry topping really paired nicely with the sour strawberry farmhouse ale.  Sweet and sour counteract each other really nicely.

Second Course
Parmesan Fried Chicken
Parmesan Fried Chicken, Corn Puree, Compressed Watermelon, Pickled Watermelon Rind
Paired with 312 Urban Wheat Ale

The fried chicken in the Parmesan breading was amazingly flavorful with a nice little zing. I wouldn’t say that the chicken paired perfectly with the wheat ale but the Watermelon sure did.

Course Three
Flank Steak
Yucatan Style Flank Steak, Mushroom Polenta, Roja Sauce, Cilantro.
Paired with Sofie 2017

Who can take what is considered a poor cut of beef and make it amazing?  Holy hell can this chef!  The BBQ sauce has a big pepper spice and goes well with the peppery saison.  The flank steak was rare and cooked amazingly well.  I don’t know a ton about Polenta but this mushroom version was really great.  The hint of earthy mushroom really worked with the saison.

Fourth Course
BBQ Pork Ribs
BBQ Pork Ribs, Celery Seed Brined Coleslaw, Jalapeno Corn Bread.
Paired with Goose Honkers Ale

The flank steak was great but this may have been better.  I am still undecided and I may need to try both again to find out haha.  The rib sauce had a mild sweetness that really melded well with the honkers ale.  This is not my favourite beer from Goose Island but with this dish it really worked.  I have never had a brined coleslaw but after having one I don’t know how I have eaten it any other way.  I love the kick that it gives.  The final touch of the jalapanjo corn bread just rounded it out with a nice mild spice to contract the sweetness of the BBQ sauce and the beer.

Course Five
Carrot Cake
Carrot Cake with Goose Island IPA glaze.
Paired with Goose IPA

This desert lived up to the rest of the meal but even I was getting full.  The carrot cake was not super sweet and the glaze was really nice.  With Goose IPA being a malt forward English style IPA it really worked well with this pairing.

This was definitely a great beer dinner and I would like to thank Goose Island Beer Company and Labatt for inviting me out to share the evening with them.

Goose Island Beer Co
http://www.gooseisland.com

Glowbal
http://www.glowbalgroup.com/glowbal

As a nice little thank you to people that attended the dinner they gave us a bottle of Gillian 2016 Vintage a beer that is not sold in Canada.

 

Moody Ales Brewmaster’s Dinner (Craft Beer Market) – November 29th 2016


On November 29th, 2016 I was lucky enough to attend the Moody Ales Brewmaster’s Dinner that was held at Craft Beer market in the Olympic Village of Vancouver.

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It is crazy to think that this is both my first brewmaster dinner at Craft was well as my first with Moody Ales.  I had every reason to believe this would be an epic dinner though as Craft makes some great food and Moody Ales is a very solid brewery.  I was also luck to be sitting at the Moody Ales table and got to catch up with some of the staff that I had not seen it a long time.

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To start the night off everyone was served a glass of the Hardy Brown Ale.  It is always nice to have a sleeve of beer to get the lips moving with new people.  With the long table nature of this dinner that makes it a much better night when you can get to know your neighbors early.  With that beer we also noticed the menu on our plates.

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Before every course the head brewer Robyn Guille and the executive chef got up and talked about the beer and the food that were about to be delivered to the table.

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First Course
Queso Fundido
Chorizo, melted cheese, BC Kennebec potatoes
Paired with Vienna Lager

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I will have to say that nothing is better than a very well made chip dip!  This happened to be one epic chip dip to boot.  The cheese, potato and chorizo made a great flavour combination.   The sweetness of the Vienna Lager cut though the mild spice quite well.  This was my first taste of the Vienna Lager and it was very full flavoured and if you know me I am not a Lager fan usually.

Second Course
Roasted Corn Chowder
Charred serranos, roasted corn, cream, chili oil
Paired with Affable IPA

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To continue with the firsts this was my very first corn chowder.  I wish this was a much bigger portion as we all agreed that this was epic!  I really liked the pickled corn.  There was an almost non existent hops bitterness that built when you took a sip of the IPA.  It a counterpoint to the first course the bitterness of the beer seemed to cut the sweetness of the soup.

Third Course
Buttermilk Fried Chicken
Chili spiced honey drizzle, jalapano cornbread, whipped butter
Paired with Sociable Pale Ale

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Course three again stepped up the game.  This fried chicken had amazing flavour with the honey drizzle without having a single note of being greasy.  I felt that the honey from the chicken and the citrus from the beer mingled well.  Now the chicken was deadly good but the cornbread with the jalapenos really paired up nicely with the mild bitterness form the pale ale.

Dessert
Chocolate Terrine
Raspberry leather
Paired with Russian Imperial Stout

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The chocolate was very nice with a mild salting on top.  The bourbon, oak and roasted malts of the Russian Imperial Stout really cut through the sweetness of the chocolate while still really working amazingly together.  The raspberry leather was quite interesting in its own right.

In the end this dinner turned out to be one of my favourite that I have attended.  Not only was the beer very tasty but the food paired well on each course.  The kitchen killed it and I hope to check out more of these dinners in the future!

Catch up with Moody Ales
http://www.moodyales.com/

Catch up with Craft Beer market Vancouver
http://craftbeermarket.ca/vancouver

Brew and Chew (Old Yale Brewing / Lakeside Beach Club) – Chilliwack


On February 20th, 2016 I was able to attend a “Brew and Chew” brewmaster dinner at the Lakeside Beach Club in Chilliwack almost on the shore of Cultus Lake.  Lakeside Beach Club partnered up with Old Yale Brewing also out in Chilliwack to put on this great canape dinner.  My sister and her Fiance also came along to the dinner.  Her Fiance is a chef so I also have his notes on the dinner.

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The Brew and Chew has some rules.  Basically the dinner was a canape dinner with each course being a small sample or a beer and food.  There were some tables but for the most part people walked around and mingled.

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People started arriving at 6pm and started the mingling right away while grabbing a glass or two of beer.  As the dinner started at 6:45pm they had a table of appraisers.

The dinner consisted of 7 distinct beers and food courses as can be seen on the menu below.

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First Course
Tuna Cone
Seared Tuna, grapefruit, rice, teri-thai drizzle
Paired with – Knotty Blonde Ale (formerly Chilliwack Blonde)

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I do not personally go for tuna cones usually when our for sushi so I did not know what to expect.  For me I thought there was a bit to much seaweed (personal taste) but overall the flavour was great especially the grapefruit notes that paired great with the mild but fruity flavour of the Blonde Ale.

Aaron Clark “The softness of the seared Tuna and the Rice is nicely contrasted by the bite of the nori cone. The pop of the grapefruit cuts through the spice of the Teri-thai sauce beautifuly. This is all brought  together nicely by the blonde ale leaving a very satisfied mouth feel.

Second Course
Tropical Inspired Cod
Pan seared cod, strawberry mango salsa, crisp crostini
Paired with – Moon Dance Mango Wheat Ale (Formerly Outta Wack Mango Wheat)

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This was pretty darn tasty.  The strawberry and mango salsa had a strong flavour that did not let the cod shine through.  This was a very tasty and interesting salsa.  It all tasted great on the crostini and the chives added a nice accent.  The mango in the beer complimented the salsa quite well and helped cut through the chives a bit.

Aaron Clark “Over all a Delicious mouthful. The mango and strawberry salsa was flavourful and fresh but totally overpowered the delicate flavor of the Cod. The beer paired beautifully with the salsa and cut through the bite of the chive.

Third Course
Pulled Pork Slider
Slow roasted pulled pork, apple, onions, brioche bun
Paired With – New Top Secret Pilsner

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This was a great pulled pork slider.  The pork was flavoured with great BBQ sauce with a mild spice kick in the finish.  The sauteed onions added some complexity to the flavour.  The pilsner while tasty was lost a little bit in the mild spice of the BBQ sauce and really only had a mild bitterness left in the flavour.

Aaron Clark “The BBQ flavor of the pork and the crisp sweetness of the onions and the apple mix delightfully with the dry slightly burnt orange flavor of the pilsner which altogether lightens the dish to finish clean.

Fourth Course
Deep Fried Macaroni
Four-cheese macaroni, liquid smoke beer battered, spicy tomato ketchup.
Paired with – Sasquatch Stout (Nitro)

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The batter on the mac and cheese was full flavoured.  The mac and cheese itself had a great flavour with the four cheese mix.  The ketchup was a mix of ketchup and sweet chili sauce it seemed and was tasty (enough to break my no ketchup rule with macaroni and cheese).  The beer had a nice smokey wood flavour that cuts through the sweetness of the ketchup and brings everything together perfectly.

Aaron Clark “The smoothness of the Stout matches the creamyness of the mac n cheese perfectly. Nitro adds a woodyness to the Stout and this would have complimented the smoke in the batter but it was somehow absent. This mixed with the sweet chillesque ketchup makes for a contrasting, slightly odd but tasty mix with a light coffee finish.

Fifth Course
Yarrow Duck Breast
Medium rare duck breast, blueberry compote, cajun onions, puff pastry.
paired with – Off Trail Pale Ale

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The pastry on the bottom was nice and fluffy and fresh.  The duck was cooked to perfection and the blueberry compote put a bow on a great bite of food.  The nice bready malts of the beer went well with the pastry.  The tropical fruits in the beer play off the blueberry nicely.

Aaron Clark “The gameyness of the duck contrasts very well with the malty hops of the Ale. The compote sweetens the bitterness of the hops perfectly. One of my favourite pairings of the night.

Sixth Course
Red Thai Curry Chicken
Red curry, egg noodles, mixed vegetables, cucumber relish
Paired with – West Coast IPA

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The red curry went really well on the chicken and was quite strong.  The chicken was also cooked to perfection.  The egg noodles also went very well with the red curry.  The IPA on the fruitier side cut through the big spice hit of this dish.

Aaron Clark “A fantastic paring of citrus hops mixed with kaffir lime and lemongrass from the curry produce an explosion of yummyness which works perfectly. The high ABV of the IPA also helps cut the spice of the curry and makes for a warm a succulent finish.

Seventh Course
Banana Bread Pudding
Housemade banana bread pudding, Irish cream toffee sauce, warmed creme anglaise
Paired with – Banshee Irish Cream Stout (Larry’s Irish Cream Stout)

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I always go for savory before sweets but this banana bread with the Irish Cream toffee was pretty incredible.  The Irish cream in the stout and the Irish Cream in the sauce go well together.  The beer has some roasted notes notes that contrast the banana bread.

Aaron Clark “Wow! Superb pairing. The softness and decadence of the pudding mixed with the creamyness of the creme anglaise and the sweetness of the toffee sauce pair fantastically with the burnt molasses and mild coffee flavourful of the Stout leaving you with a slight naughty feeling inside and a very happy palate

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I had a great time at this dinner as did my sister and her Fiancee.  The food and beer may not have been in large portions but with 7 different samples you left full and quite satisfied. Good job both Old Yale Brewing and Lakeside Beach Club.  Thanks for the great evening!

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Here are my full sized photos.

Old Yale Brewing
http://www.oldyalebrewing.com/
#4 7965 Venture Place
Chilliwack, BC V2R 0K2

Lakeside Beach Club
http://lakesidebeachclub.ca
4130 Columbia Valley Road<
Cultus Lake, BC
604.858.3374
cultuslakesidebeachclub@gmail.com

 

Red Truck Brewmaster Dinner (Romer’s Burger Bar) – Jan 31st, 2016


I have been to two different beer dinners with Romer’s Burger Bar in the past but both were at the Kitsilano location.  This time the brewmaster dinner was held at their Yaletown location.  The dinner was a collaboration with Red Truck Beer.

This is the third year that Romer’s has put on the Craft Bowl promotion at their pubs and this dinner tied into it.  Red Truck is the 2 time defending champion of the promotion.  All three locations put two or three beer against each other in a blind tasting where you pick your favourite and get a glass for $6.  The beer you pick is the one that gets your vote and each week a beer goes on.  I arrived at the dinner early so I decided to make my vote count.

Last weeks beers turned out to be Strange Fellows Talisman West Coast Pale Ale and Moody Ales hardy Brown Ale.  I blindly picked the Pale Ale and it became my vote (Moody Ales moved onto next round).

Once everyone arrived the dinner could begin.

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The dinner began with the manager of this location giving an introduction to how the night would go.  He then introduced Jim Romer the owner and executive chef of Romer’s Burger Bar who explained what we would be eating that night.  After he spoke the Cicerone for Red Truck Ales explained why the beers used in the cooking and the beers paired with the food were used (Not always the same beer in food as being consumed).

First Course
Red Truck IPA Organic Beet Salad
Local Goat cheese, wild baby arugula, sweet onion, Red Truck IPA mustard vinaigrette.
Paired with – Red Truck Lager

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This salad was a nice fresh salad with a mild bite and tartness from the Vinegarette.  I don’t think you can go wrong with Goat Cheese on a salad either.  The lager is mildly citrusy and clean and does not overpower the salad.  Probably not the pairing I would have chosen but it worked pretty well together.

Second Course
Red Truck Lager Braised Rib Duo
Beef short ribs, maui pork ribs, wild mushroom risotto, Red Truck Lager jus
Paired with – Red Truck IPA

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This dish was by far my favourite of the three dishes.  The meat had been marinated in the Lager overnight.  The meat was very rich in flavour  and also very tender.  I can not say I can notice the lager shining through in the meat or the jus.  The mild bitterness of the IPA did cut through the richness of the meat though and paired quite well.

Course Three
Maple Bacon Doughnuts
Maple frosting, fresh thyme, Red Truck Ale caramel Sauce
Paired With – Red Truck Ale

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Although not my favourite dish (as I prefer the savoury parts) this was the best pairing of the bunch bar none.  The doughnuts were sweet and had a ton of maple and caramel standing out.  There was a hint of the ale peaking through in the sauce.  The small chunk of bacon on top of every doughnut was an awesome touch!  While the caramel and mild fruit notes pair well with the doughnut the hint of bitterness does help to cut back on the sweetness.

If you did not leave this dinner both full and quite happy with the beer and food offered I don’t think beer dinners are for you!  I quite enjoyed the opportunity to try out new dishes and see how the people involved paired it with beer.  Good job Romer’s and Red Truck on a successful dinner.

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This is the last week of Romer’s Craft Bowl “The Trinity” and the three breweries in question need your votes!  All three locations are serving the same three beer with the final tally being on Superbowl Sunday where a winner will be crowned.

Full sized photos can be found here.

Romers Burger Bar
http://www.romersburgerbar.com
1039 Mainland Street
Vancouver BC
V6B 2T4
Phone: (604) 559 7210

Red Truck Beer
http://www.redtruckbeer.com