Let’s start off the with exclusive Beer from Savor. New York Limited: Ommegang; Saranac; and Brooklyn Breweries collaborated this year to produce a rich spicy and citrusy white lager that is 100% bottle re-fermented. This 8.5% ABV beer is big but also refreshing and was perfect to start my birthday week in the DC Summer.
This was a big deviation because of the move to NYC. The tickets didn’t sell out, I haven’t been to this venue in the city, how was this event going to go? This was Amazingly well run. I’d even say this was better than last year because it wasn’t so crowded. I actually got oysters this year! (Note to anyone offering all you can eat oysters at an event that people pay for entry up front…there will never be enough oysters. Oyster people are bottomless pits) The event moved well, the breweries all had enough beer and food to go around, what more could you ask for? I loved how one of the walls essentially sported the murderers row of barrel aged beers (Avery, Bruery, Lost Abbey, Firestone Walker…it was crazy) and both Bell’s and Founders decided to bring raspberry beers. They told me it wasn’t on purpose, but it’s more fun to speculate. I am just going to give you my favorite pairings:
Favorite Pairing: Willoughby Brewing Company: Peanut Butter Cup Coffee Porter Paired with Black and Tan Brownie with Butterscotch and Pretzel Bite
This small Ohio brew pub brought one of the most anticipated beers to the event and it totally delivered. The brownie was amazing on its own, but with that rich chocolate peanut butter beer with a kick of coffee; it was amazing. The pairing was a tight rope walk of bold flavors that just exploded in my mouth. Pretzel, toffee cut with peanut butter and coffee. The salt of the pretzel made the chocolate rich and creamy. I am just so sad that I will most likely never get to taste this again. It’s Savor, that’s the treat and the tease of the event.
Runner Up 1: Ballast Point Brewing Company: Toasted Coconut Victory at Sea Imperial Porter Paired with Murmura: Puffed Rice with Jaggery Sugar Caramel
Puffed rice Jaggery whatever? Or fancy rice krispee treat. You say tomato, right? This beer was really nice and sweet with the addition of toasted coconut and that was really made sweeter by the rich vanilla flavor this beer already possesses. It was crunchy sweet, roasty and light. Perfect pairing. Also I have to mention here that I the Ballast Point Habanero Sculpin IPA at a bar the night before..it is the spiciest chili beer that I have ever had. Let’s just say my morning felt like I had eaten 100 spicy wings the night before. I ate nothing else spicy.
Final Runner Up: Brooklyn Brewery: Black Ops Paired with Chicken Liver and Chocolate
This was what a lot of people said was the “Best Pairing” but I was more thrilled by the aformentioned dessert pairings. This was a fun pairing. It was sweet, savory, meaty and the that was really cut by the nice rich bourbon stout. It was a fantastic play on salty and sweet, but hey I was in a sweet mood. Feel free to disagree.
It gets hard to remember all of the pairings overall, but these were the best overall. And you know they were good because I was able to remember them 2 days later. This event is fun because it marks the release of a lot of these beers to the general public. The Bruery Bois is a special beer they release every year aged in bourbon barrels, you should check your local beer store to see if they are getting it. Lost Abbey Deliverance is already out and you should try it while you can. I hope this encourages all of you to mark your calendars so you can pick your favorite beer and food pairings next June.
Cheers until Heavy Seas Burgerfest this weekend!!!