Booming bruncherie Cafï¿½ Estelle (444 N. 4th St.) normally closes its doors just before sunset this time of year, but this Thursday, Dec. 3,ï¿½ chef/owner Marshall Green's hand-crafted grub will be paired with Stoudt's classic lineup of brews for a special beer dinner.
Things get started with a bacon, cheddar and Stoudt's Gold soup, then local farmers are highlighted with a salad of local lettuces, hazelnuts and confit chicken.ï¿½ Green is also braising boar shanks in Scarlet Lady, a mildly hopped, caramelized red ale that serves as that course's beer pairing.
The party starts at 7:30 p.m. and tickets are $40 plus tax & tip. Call 215-925-5080 for reservations. Check out the complete menu and beer pairings after the jump.
Cheddar, bacon and Stoudt's Gold soup; with Stoudt's Gold
Salad of lettuces, hazelnuts and confit chicken; with Stoudt's Pils
Tuna with squash and nicoise olive risotto; with Stoudt's APA
Scarlet Lady-braised boar shank; with Stoudt's Scarlet Lady
"Chocolatey" dessert; with Stoudt's Brown Dog
|"Don't give up the sip!"|
Great Lakes Brewing is peddling its wares tonight at Devil's Den (1148 S. 11th St.), where the Cleveland-based craft brewer will offer four beers ï¿½ Commodore Perry IPA, Elliot Ness Lager, Burning River Pale Ale and Dortmunder Gold ï¿½ in both buck-off pint and flight format.
We've only had the hefty 7.5 percent ABV Commodore Perry IPA (after asking for an Admiral Perry, much to the amusement of the staff) but it was a tasty, grapefruit-y IPA that could hold its own next to Bell's Two Hearted, our gold standard for the style.ï¿½ You can familiarize yourself with the four brews on Great Lakes Web site, and get to Devil's Den tonight between 7 and 9 p.m. to taste it for yourself.
The Stoudt's -brewed McGillin's 1860 IPA has been available exclusively on draft at McGillin's Olde Ale House (1310 Drury St.) since it debuted Aug. 4, 2009, 150 days before the tavern's 150th birthday on January 1, 2010.ï¿½ Now three distributors have just 200 cases total of the first bottling of the secret-recipe India Pale Ale, which is hopped with Centennials and Amarillos and left unfiltered for historical accuracy.
Pick up a case ($35) at Springfield Beer Distributor (27th & South St., 215-546-7301),ï¿½ Bella Vista Beer Distributors, 755 S. 11th St., 215-627-6465) and Fishtown Beverage (1511 Frankford Ave., 215-634-4883).ï¿½ Six-packs ($11.95) can be had at both Foodery locations (837 N. Second St., 215-238-6077 and 324 S. 10th St., 215-928-1111).
Licensing is also in the works for bottles and to-go six-packs to be sold at McGillin's, as well as other area restaurants and pubs.
Email McGillins[at]aol[dot]com with requests for bottles and kegs of 1860 IPA at your preferred distributors, take-out shops and public houses.
|Photo | James Saul
If you're still questin' for Halloween-themed beers to hold on to the spirit of the just-passed holiday, Magic Hat is offering up a "Night of the Living Dead" variety pack. A case ï¿½ "a macabre medley of monstrous mixtures!" ï¿½ retails for about $35 and features four brews: deep-red Roxy Rolles, a rich Chocolate Belgian Stout and Magic Hat classics #9 and Circus Boy.
The folks at Magic Hat hooked us up with samples of Roxy Rolles and the Stout, along with a sweet pair of neon plastic shades (above, worn by beer). Sadly, the shades do not come in every "Night of the Living Dead" pack, otherwise we could have billed this as a "Drunken Corey Hart Costume in a Box."
In any case, the special guests on the Magic Hat roster are quite tasty. Roxy Rolles has a complex, fruity-pine vibe from a blend of Brewer's Gold and Simcoe hops. A nice beer for sessioning, especially if you like a strong red ale; serve it with something savory. Magic Hat's "Fall Odd Notion 2009" is the Chocolate Belgian Stout, a might, malty bevvy with delicious cocoa and caramel undertones from five different malt varieties. If you're a fan of the dark, this brew will light up your autumn nights.
Oysters and stout are a classic pairing, but their marriage has as much to do with geography as taste harmony between the creamy, briny mollusk and the roasty character of the beer. ï¿½ In 19th century England, oysters were so cheap and plentiful they were served in pubs as bar snacks alongside the typical English stouts, writes Beer Hunter Michael Jackson.ï¿½ By the early 20th century, black stouts had been replaced by pale ales as the standard quaff, and once-plentiful oysters were gone, victim to over-dredging.
Despite their long history as a duo, oysters were only first utilized as an ingredient in stout in 1929 in New Zealand; the London brewery Hammerton followed in 1938.ï¿½ Now brewer Casey Hughes has picked up the torch for Flying Fish's new, one-off, big-bottle release: Exit 1 Bayshore Oyster Stout.
A hearty mashbill of Belgian pale, Maris Otter, chocolate, medium crystal and roasted malts plus flaked barley go into the wort, which is spiked by 80 whole Port Norris, NJ oysters -- shell and all -- for each 20 barrel batch.ï¿½ After swimming in the boil for 20 minutes, the oyster bags are fished out (and then eaten, all chocolaty and gummy, by Hughes and brewery staff).ï¿½ The signature Guinness yeast gets things going.
"I was inspired by Tom Kehoe's original Yards Love Stout, which was brewed with oysters," says Hughes. "I really wanted to try out this style, but there were no recipes or amounts anywhere that I could find."ï¿½ The trial and error method has yielded a unique, deep black brew that shows a sweet vanilla and chocolate aroma but drinks super smooth, with some creaminess and body contributed by the oysters.ï¿½ The shellfish show up in force in the finish, which is minerally, chalky and totally dry. Consumed side-by-side with salty Pemaquids from Damariscotta Bay, Maine and slightly subtler Wellfleets from Cape Cod, Mass., the sweeter, chocolate notes of the stout come far forward and made the oysters finish much longer on the palate.
Taste the pairing of Exit 1 Bayshore Oyster Stout with its natural mate this evening at a launch party given by the Mink family at Oyster House (1515 Sansom St.).ï¿½ From 6-8 p.m., Delaware Bay oysters will be $1 each and Exit 1 will be pouring in a super-limited draft format.ï¿½ From 7-9 p.m., the Standard Tap (901 N. Second St.) will pour the very first firkin of Exit 1.
Look for bottles of Exit 1 at both Foodery locations (837 N. Second St.; 324 S. 10th St.) today as well.ï¿½ Exit 1 is a one-time-only beer; 1390 cases of 25-ounce bottles and just 80 kegs were produced.
|Tony Cenicola/The New York Times
Eric Asimov unravels the mysteries of stout in the New York Times today, tasting 19 bottles of the North American versions of the United Kingdom classic.
PEOPLE get stuck on the word stout. It confuses, the way it connotes size and fleshiness. And the color, too ï¿½ inky, impenetrable black ï¿½ suggests mass and power. As a result, many people think stout is a formidable blockbuster of an ale, heavy and alcoholic, just the way they assume darker roasts of coffee have more caffeine than lighter roasts. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Stout in its classic form is one of the lighter ales, paradoxically full-bodied yet delicate.
As a bartender with a nitro tap devoted to Sly Fox O'Reilly's Stout, a local riff on the quintessential dry, roasty Irish stout that most of us tasted first in Guinness, people daily wrinkle their noses when I suggest they try the black brew.ï¿½ "It's so heavy. It makes me feel so full," is the common refrain.
Nevermind that a dry Irish stout has fewer calories (about 100 per 12 ounces) and less alcohol (4.5 to 6 percent for most; excepting big Imperial or double styles)ï¿½ than a typical IPA.ï¿½ï¿½ The solution?ï¿½ Read Asimov's rundown for the top tastes in their field, then taste a fresh, sprightly local version -- with your eyes closed.
|Have a beer, dear.|
Saturday, Oct. 31 is the deadline for entering your best home-brewed beer into Mï¿½mï¿½'s (2201 Spruce St.) second homebrew competition going down Nov. 3.ï¿½ Visit the restaurant Wednesday through Saturday between 1 and 4 p.m. with a sample of your best-home brewed offering for chef/owner David Katz to try: the top ten entries will be judged by attendees as well as beer experts George Hummel (Home Sweet Homebrew), Suzanne Woods (BeerLass) and Chris Fetfatzes (Bella Vista Beer Distributors) for a winner-takes-all prize of Best In Show.
The $25 event ticket buys samples of all the homebrews, plus plenty of beer from sponsors Sly Fox, Victory, Unibroue and Ommegang.ï¿½ Guest chef Joe Chmiko of Resurrection Ale House will be plating up lamb skewers, roasted cauliflower with sweet and sour onions and pan con tomate, homemade grilled bread with chorizo, tomato and manchego cheese -- all items from Resurrection's lunch/dinner menu.ï¿½ Host chef/owner David Katz will throw down tasty bites as well, but today is the man's birthday and we're not calling him on his day off.
Starfish Junction, the Long Island-based production company behind the award-winning Philly Craft Beer Festival, believes in the Philadelphia beer scene.ï¿½ So much so that they launched their graphic-heavy, Outlook-compatible calendar site PhillyBeerEvents.com on July 31, a month before the September 1 launch of NYCBeerEvents.com.
Visitors can scroll through the month-by-month listings of local beer festivals, beer and food pairing dinners, tasting events,ï¿½ lectures, book signings andï¿½ fundraisers, as well as other local beer-related special events.ï¿½ï¿½ There is also an option to receive bimonthly emails that delivers event listings to users' inboxes.
Lynda Calimano of Starfish Junction says the site has received "great interest" so far, and welcomes restaurant and bars to submit beer-related events; send them to LyndaC@starfishjunction.com.
|Furthermore Oscura coffee lager|
At tiny cafï¿½s all over Italy, it's common to see a row of beer bottles and a grappa or two lining the top shelf of the coffee bar.ï¿½ A short beer with lunch or a cafï¿½ coretto (espresso spiked with grappa) is a normal part of the day.ï¿½ Now Philadelphians can capture that vibe, and take in a brew accompanied by free WiFi and dessert at The Coffee Bar (Radisson-Warwick Hotel, 1701 Locust St., 215-789-6136).
South Philly Tap Room expat Stephen Stetson has taken over management of the former Capriccio space, which is owned and encompassed by the Radisson-Warwick Hotel. When Stetson found out the cafï¿½ came complete with a liquor license, he wasted no time assembling a list of excellent craft beers.
"I recently came to the Coffee Bar, in many ways, to refocus its original vision. I personally have a love of coffee and well-made craft beer, and I see no reason why they can't work together in the same comfortable spot," writes Stetson in an e-mail. "I realize it shocks some guests that we are a coffee shop that serves great beer, and others that we're a beer bar that serves dessert and coffee."
The bottle list, which features seasonals like Brooklyn Post Road pumpkin ale and locals like General Lafayette's Abbey Brune, will change monthly. Stetson hopes to install two draft lines in the near future. For now, The Coffee Bar is running a daily "Post-Happy Hour" Happy Hour, Monday to Friday, from 6 to 8 p.m. with all craft beers for $3. Larger 22-ounce bottles are $10.
"Philadelphia has such a proud and vibrant beer culture, it would be foolish to limit that passion and quality to gastropubs and corner bars," adds Stetson. Take a look at The Coffee Bar's full bottle list (with non-Happy Hour prices) after the jump.
Brooklyn Post Road Pumpkin $5
Boulder Obovoid Oatmeal Stout (22 oz) $18
Coronado Islander Pale Ale $5
Dark Horse Crooked Tree IPA $5
Dark Horse Raspberry Ale $5
Eel River Raven's Eye Imperial Stout (organic) (22 oz) $16
Founders Porter $5
General Lafayette Abbey Brune $6
Furthermore Oscura (Coffee Lager) $5
Sprecher Hefe Weiss $5
Steamworks Colorado Kolsch $5
|Ryan Collerd for the New York Times|
|Sam Calagione and two professors chew corn to make a beer.|
But only in the name of historical accuracy.
The New York Times features the irrepressible owner of Dogfish Head Craft Brewed Ales today, who is now brewing a traditional Peruvian corn beer, chicha. Purple Peruvian corn is milled in the brewer's mouth and spit out before being brewed.
ï¿½You need to convert the starches in the corn into fermentable sugars,ï¿½ the always entertaining Mr. Calagione said by phone from his headquarters in Rehoboth Beach. ï¿½One way is through the malting process. But another way ï¿½ there are natural enzymes in human saliva and by chewing on corn, whether they understood the science of it, ancient brewers through trial and error learned that the natural enzymes in saliva would convert the starch in corn into sugar, so it would ferment. It may sound a little unsavory. ...ï¿½
ï¿½The fact is that this step happens before you brew the beer, so itï¿½s completely sterile,ï¿½ he continued. ï¿½Itï¿½s boiled for over an hour.ï¿½
Dogfish is producing only 10 kegs of the chicha, to be poured exclusively at the Dogfish Head Brewings and Eats brewpub in Rehoboth Beach. Read all about it here.
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