January 30, 2014

Beer and cheese - a natural combination

The beer
On Sunday there was an intimate gathering treated to a tasting of the Goose Island "sisters" - Halia, Gillian, Juliet, and Lolita - paired with cheese. As an added bonus, dessert was a cheese paired with a glass of Bourbon County Stout.
The cheese
It was a casual environment, with attendees conversing as the beers were served, passing around trays of bread, bowls of candied and spicy nuts, and jars of different condiments.
Halia with the Stilton
Halia was the first beer, paired with Long Clawson White Stilton with lemon. Since all of these beers were sour, Beer KC Beer Director Randyl Danner thought more in terms of the fruit in each paired with the cheese. Halia is a farmhouse ale aged with peaches and had a subtle sweetness that was balanced by the cheese. Most Stilton is blue cheese, with veins of mold running through it. The cheese in this pairing was the mellower white variety, enhanced infused with lemon. The tartness of the lemon played well with that of the beer, and the peach and citrus didn't get in the way of each other.

Gillian with Ricotta
Strawberry, white pepper, and honey were a part of the next beer, Gillian. When the beer was first served, the strawberry flavors took a backseat to the pepper, but as it sat and warmed the strawberry came to the forefront, opening up with beautiful balance. The Mitica Ricotta was rich, and the acidity and fruitiness of the helped balance some of it. And some of either the apple or berry chutney cut the dryness of the crumbly cheese.
Juliet with Lincet Delices de Bourgogne
The next pairing featured the personal favorite beer and cheese on the afternoon. Juliet's blackberries and tartness next to the soft and creamy Lincet Delices de Bourgogne. Each are phenomenal representations of their respective styles and complimented each other very well. The beer was sweet and tart but not overwhelming at either, and the smooth cheese was mellow enough to match the fruit but strong enough to keep up with the sour (these qualities actually made the cheese a natural pair with all of the beers, but it worked best with Juliet, the sourest of the bunch).

Lolita and brie
Lolita was the last of the sisters, paired with a classic triple cream brie. Once again a great pairing of a sour beer with a soft cheese, though the brie was a little nuttier and mellower than the Delices de Bourgogne, and the Lolita's raspberries slightly sweeter than Juliet.
Bourbon County Stout and el Trigal Manchego 12
While the Juliet and Delices de Bourgogne may have been my favorite beer and cheese of the day, my favorite overall pairing was the "dessert." The big Bourbon County Stout may seem better suited for chocolate, but the aged Manchego was perfect next to the bold beer. The cheese was nutty and subdued, and let the beer do most of the heavy lifting. It had a slight creaminess that went with the rich mouthfeel of the stout but enough structure to hold its own and not be totally overcome. This was a perfect pairing.

Miss out this time? Beer KC will be hosting another beer and cheese pairing in October! Keep your eyes open for details later this year.

January 24, 2014

Sunday with sisters

There are still a few spots left for Sunday's Goose Island beer & cheese pairing! Don't miss your chance to have the four "sisters" and a special Bourbon County treat! Reserve your spot now by calling 816.960.0866

January 17, 2014

Restaurant Week 2014 is here!

January means that it's time for Kansas City Restaurant Week! Once again, McCoy's and Beer Kitchen are taking part. You can get a $15 lunch or $33 dinner at either spot, with your choice of a few options. And each time you eat a Restaurant Week meal at any of the participating restaurants, a portion of the proceeds will benefit charities around Kansas City.

At McCoy's, lunch gets you two courses of your choice below, and dinner gets you a pick from each course! And a house-made beer would compliment any of these very nicely...

PEI Mussels
Charred jalapeno cream and spicy sourdough
House-Made Kielbasa
Crispy potato pancakes and Dijon creme fraiche
Kale, brussel sprouts, apple, templeton rye vinaigrette, goat cheese, wood fired flatbread

Cabernet Braised Short Ribs
Horseradish mashers, and buttered greens
Pancetta Wrapped Salmon
Roasted garlic spinach risotto and Parmesan butter
Wood Fired Seitan
Miso fried faro and baby bok choy
the Cabernet short ribs. mmmmmmmm
Bourbon Glazed Coffe Cake
Mini Fruit Cobbler of the Day
Select ice cream

Same deal at Beer Kitchen, pick two at lunch and three at dinner, but different menu.

Red and Gold Beet Salad
With mix greens, spicy goat cheese, and walnut vinaigrette
Hand Cranked Short Rib Banger
With pork belly hash and smoked tomato cream
Lobster Deviled Eggs
With truffle mayo and lemony rocket

Black Sesame Seared Ahi
With soba noodles and a Sriracha mint vinaigrette
Pan Roasted Hanger Steak
With crispy fries and BBQ hollandaise
Roasted Veggie "Street Tacos"
Spicy brown rice and radish slaw

Hot Caramel and Stout Brownie Sundae
With framboise gelato
Pear Streusel
With Creme Anglaise

That all sounds fantastic. Now if you'll excuse me, I believe a hot caramel and stout brownie sundae is calling my name.

January 09, 2014

Spend a day with Goose Islands sisters

In case you've missed the news on Facebook, coming up towards the end of the month The Foundry will be hosting a beer tasting event that is not to be missed. On Sunday, January 26th, there will be a beer and cheese pairing that will feature all four of the "sisters" from Goose Island: Juliet, Lolita, Gillian, and Halia. And, as a special treat, Bourbon County Stout will be paired with dessert. Seating will be EXTREMELY limited, so call NOW at 816-960-0866 to get reserve your spot... if there are any left! It will be worth every penny of $45.

Now you may be asking yourself, "hey, what are the Goose Island sisters?" Well first, it's totally normal to ask yourself questions, I do it all the time. Secondly, oh boy oh boy oh boy, these are some mighty fine brews.

Let's start with the two that have been around the longest. Juliet and Lolita are both "wild ales," and these ladies are sour, in the best possible way. Both aged in wine barrels, Juliet has blackberries added to the aging while Lolita has raspberries. The fruit gives each of these a touch of sweetness and the barrel aging and wild yeast bring the sour and wine-like tannins and dang I'm getting thirsty. These will pucker you up and you're going to love every second of it.

The two newcomers, Halia and Gillian, are both Belgian style farmhouse ales, but will still have some tartness to them. Halia is aged in wine barrels with peaches, sweet and tart. Gillian is only partially aged in wine barrels and has strawberry, white pepper, and honey. There's still going to be a tart tinge, but it'll be a little more subdued. These two sisters are the blondes and their older siblings are the redheads. Dangerously beautiful, all of them.

Then there's the granddaddy, Bourbon County Stout. This one's been around for a while, and packs a punch. Aged in bourbon barrels, this dark, rich, deep beer is going to be perfect for wrapping up the tasting (get will get you ready to be tucked into bed). It's chocolate and bourbon and so so delicious.

This might be the only place you'll find all five beers in one spot at the same time, unless you were lucky enough to snatch up bottles when they were on the shelves. If you weren't able to get any, don't miss out on one more chance to try them! This will be in the the plot room (the room between McCoy's and The Foundry), so this will be an intimate little pairing. We're looking forward to seeing you on the 26th!