Monday, November 14, 2011
Peace through superior beer
Last Thursday night I went to a Dogfish Head beer tasting & 4 course dinner at the Stone Balloon Winehouse in Newark. The Winehouse is smack in the middle of Main Street, just down from the Brewery. It's a really classy place, totally out of place in a college town. I happened to be walking down Main Street one day in September and saw a sign outside the Winehouse for a Dogfish head dinner & tasting event taking place in November, so I thought I'd treat my little sister as a late birthday present.
It was awesome! The place is beautiful, and really far, far too upscale for me. When I look at the menu and don't know what some of the words mean I know I'm out of my element.
The first dish was some kind of Smoked Tuna which looked like I'd hate it when it came out, but something on the plate tasted like bacon, so tuna dipped in that was great. They paired this with Dogfish Head Red & White, a beligian white ale that didn't have the strong coriander taste I often dislike about belgians. It was my first time trying it. I'll have to buy a bottle.
The second dish was smoked duck, which was tasty as well. It was paired with Sah' Tea, which I haven't had in a while. I'd forgotten how much I liked it.
There's only one word to describe the third course. NOM! Braised pork shank that was slightly crispy on the outside, yet fall off the bone, melt in your mouth tender. If they'd given me 4 plates of it I'd have devoured it all! The only thing that would've made it better would've been a side of bacon. They paired this one with Bitches Brew, the only dark beer of the night. Even Breda likes Bitches Brew, and she's more of an IPA drinker.
The last course was something I dug into having not the slightest clue what I was eating. I'm glad I didn't know, because fatty duck liver sounds gross. Foie Gras, which apparently PETA hates! Good to know I pissed off some hippies! The beer, a vintage 09' Olde School Barleywine was probably my favorite of the night. Last time I tried Barleywine style beer I hated it, but maybe if I buy some Olde School and cellar it it'll mellow out, sweeten up and not be so bitter.