The flatbread and beer pairings:
- Caramelized Onions with Sottocenere, paired with Lafayette Brewing Co. Star City Lager
- Braised Pork Belly, paired with LBC Tippecanoe Common
- Braised Short Ribs with White Cheddar, paired with LBC Black Angus Oatmeal Stout
As we settled into our seats, Ted Miller from Brugge and Chris Eley from Goose the Market spoke a little bit about their offerings. I've had terrine before (pig instead of duck) and liked it. I've tried Brugge Spider before (and REALLY liked it). This pairing had to be pretty good, right?
Torchon with macerated Spider Figs, Duck Terrine, Chocolate, Sea Salt, Blackberry Moustarda paired with Brugge Spider
I was sad to see the last pairing go, but was intrigued by what was coming next. a trio of salads prepared by Tyler Herald from Napolese and New Albanian Oaktimus. The beer is Hoptimus, a favorite of mine, aged with oak chips.
Sun King Naptown Brown marinated Shitake Mushrooms, Summer Sweet Corn and Barley Salad
Grilled Potato Salad with a Roasted Garlic and Sun King XX Rye IPA Aioli
Roasted Beet Salad with a Honey Orange Grapefruit Jungle Vinaigrette
All of the salads were truly wonderful and paired with the beer in their own unique way. The beer's oak flavor was subdued by the beets, leaving a sweet vanilla flavor. The oak flavor played up the candied walnuts, making them extremely flavorful.
The potatoes were great. If I was blindfolded, I might have said that the potatoes could have been a really nice piece of tender steak. The aioli and the rye from the IPA played really well with the oak in the Oaktimus.
My favorite salad pairing was the corn and barley salad. The peppery flavor in the salad really accentuated the hops and oak. It balanced the salad so well you couldn't tell where it ended and the beer began.
Next up was the always entertaining Eli Anderson from H2O and Kevin Mattalucci from Broad Ripple Brewpub.
Halibut sous vide in BRBP ESB served along side Duel Citizenship chips paired with BRBP Kolsch
Fish and beer may seem like an easy pairing, but if the beer doesn't match the delicateness of the fish, the pairing may end up off balance or worse, causing the flavors to cancel each other out and disappear.
The Kolsch that was paired with Eli's fish and chips worked great, I'm happy to say. Both the fish and the beer had a sweet elements that played off each other, allowing for the enjoyment of both. The Kolsch was really bright, the flavors crawled right up the back of my throat into my nose, like a really refreshing soda.
Mike and I must have really been enjoying the food and talking about it because about this time in the evening we were finding that I was falling behind on the courses. I'm a slow eater to begin with, and especially slow when I am enjoying my food. It is good they don't move at my pace or we'd be there all night!
Clay Robinson from Sun King and Chef JJ stepped up to provide the penultimate course of the evening.
It's no secret, I am a huge fan of Chef JJ's food, especially when it is paired with Sun King. Clay and JJ have gotten really good at pairing food and beer, finding creative ways to please the palates of those lucky enough to get to try it.
Das Buffalo Pork Tenderloin with Westy Glaze and Summer Veggies paired with Cream Dream III: The Search for Hops
The CDIII really fills in where the pork ends. Like icing on a cake, it elevates the flavors and provides an extra zing to the food. CDIII contains a blend of Simcoe, Centennial, and my new favorite hop variety, Citra. Citra and Centennial impart citrus and tropical flavors, which work nicely with the grapefruit flavors in Simcoe. The combination of all of these flavors in the beer work with the spicy veggies. Another home run from Chef JJ and Clay.
As the sun started to fade, it was time for dessert. The wonderful Chef Jenna Gatchell from Chef JJ's and Andrew Mason from 3 Floyds worked together to come up with something pretty wonderful.
Dark Lord Tiramisu paired with 3 Floyds Schwarzbier