Cascade Brewing Brewer’s Dinner (10/15/2010)
So, with my recent concert going and being out of town for work, I forgot to post about the utterly amazing Cascade Brewing Brewer’s Dinner last Friday (October 15, 2010). I was luckily at the table with owner Ron Gansberg, his wife, and one of their brewers John (last name escapes me). Super great beer-loving group at my table as well – Nicole, Drew, Josh and Josh’s friend (name also escapes me).
The normal meat-y affair had some changes made for me (thank you, Paul Kasten - sous chef @ Wildwood). The veggie options were great, and I’ll admit, just about anything paired with these delicious sour beers would be fantastic.
Here’s what I had (with notes below):
- Mixed Chicory Salad w/ Frite Galois: nice farmhouse beer, slightly sour, not as over the top as we’d get later in the night. Went great with the viniagrette and cheese in the salad.
- Fall Pepper Crostone w/ Vlad the Imp Aler: oh, my, this may have been my first taste of Vlad … love it. Spiced blonde quads, bourbon barrels, delightful. I picked up two bottles of it earlier this week (it was released in bottle on Saturday the 16th). My egg and crostone came out 10-15 minutes ahead of the meat-y dishes, and I was told by the server to eat it hot… I devoured it. Simple fried egg on a salsa-fied version of bruschetta.
- Matsutake Mushroom and Farro Risotto w/ Sour Rye: a younger one of the sour beers. I didn’t catch the age when Ron talked about it… 3 months, maybe? The risotto was phenomenal. It didn’t work with the rye beer, in my opinion; however both the food and the beer were excellent indepedently. The meat-eaters got a “rueben deconstructed” - cabbage salad with caraway seeds under a slice of battered and fried cornbeef, which was inspired by the rye in the beer.
- Grilled Eggplant and Cherry Tomato Salad w/ Autumn Gose: the autumn gose smelled “like halloween” to me, carmal nose, nutmeg, cinnamon, sea salt, orange peel. The eggplant was sliced nice and thin (i.e.- the only good way to eat eggplant). I forget how it paired, but since I didn’t note that it didn’t work, it probably worked. :)
- Oregon Star Tomato Soup w/ Sang Noir: sang noir was amazing, it’s a northwest sour red, ahed in pinot noir barrels with some of it being aged on bing cherries prior to the blend. Another “great independently” food & beer, but didn’t work paired. Great nonetheless, and again, I know the main pairings were for meat; so I’m eternally grateful for Paul at Wildwood for being awesome and making my nice and full.
- Russet Potato Gnocchi w/ Bourbonic Plague: what to say about the bourbonic plague? amazing, deceptive, will knock you dead without you knowing it. it’s strong (12.1% abv), bourbon barrel aged (hence the name), hints of dates, spiced double porter base, abbey normal yeast, 16-18 months in the barrel. 12.1%, yet drinks like a juice box. :) oh, it’ll knock you dead. great with the gnocchi!
- Pistachio Ice Cream w/ Apricot Ale: 2010 “raw” batch of the ale, unblended version, very fruit forward… nice with the subtler pistachio ice cream. The honey on the ice cream was a bit much for my taste, but I think this dish went very well with the beer. I think 30 oz. in on a high-octane beer tasting… well, it was bound to be awesome at this point.
Check out Cascade’s sour beers: http://www.cascadebrewing.com/
Check out Cascade’s new barrelhouse in SE PDX: http://www.cascadebrewingbarrelhouse.com/
Check out Wildwood Restaurant: http://wildwoodrestaurant.com/
Wildwood has another brewer’s dinner coming up – Sierra Nevada on Friday, November 5th.
Keep Portland beer’d!