Sunday, October 14, 2012

Beer Blog For The Ladies

This girl has a pretty neat thing going on. Any celebration of women enjoying beer is something we want to get behind. Get your mind out of the gutter. 

Beer love + nail art love = Nails and Ales

Baird Kurofune Porter

Japan is one of the most enigmatic places on planet earth with a people who have a gift for mastering anything they set their mind to. One needs to only to look at the intense thought and dedication that goes into Japanese tea houses to understand the extent and beauty the Japanese have been able to accomplish. As many of you know, one of my favorite brewers currently in Hitachino (We're doing a beer dinner with them on December 2nd!). So when I stumbled across the Baird brand I had to have it. It not only met but exceeded my expectations.

They truly live up to their motto: Balance + Complexity = Character.

We've had the Red Rose Amber and Dark Sky Imperial Stout in bottle format for some time. I was lucky enough to come across a keg of their Kurofune Porter. Kurofune is the word the Japanese used to describe the American warship that forced open their ports to western trade.  The appearance of this porter is midnight black with very dark mahogany around the edge when held up to light. The head smelled of caramel sweetness, roasted malt and coffee, with a traces of dark fruit. Wonderful mouth feel that lingered long after the first taste. Sat itself right down on the palate and hung out for a few minutes. Coffee, coco, and roast malts prevail with a light hopped background.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

We had our first session of Beer School this week and it went very well. Together with the cheese genius,  David Conway-Lama, at C'est Cheese in Port Jefferson we put together a real tasty pairing. He really helped me out by picking three perfect pairings to our Rochefort beers.

The Rochefort 6 was paired with one of my personal favorite cheeses, the Beemster. This Dutch cheese is aged for an astonishing 26 months. It develops little crunchy sugar crystals and very nice toffee flavors. This was a nice way to pair the light fruit, malt, and yeast flavors that characterize this classic beer.

With the Rochefort 8 we called upon the Comté, a French unpasteurized cow's milk cheese. The slick creamy mouth feel and spice characteristics of the 8 blended with the cheeses herb spice. It gets this quality from the cows grazing on wild herbs in the highlands of the Alps. It was a very interesting combination that had different flavors emerge depending on which you consumed first, the beer or the cheese.

Rochefort 10 is an absolute monster of a beer. David provided a great soft blue cheese, St. Agur, that was able to stand up to this legend. This was my favorite pairing for several reasons. I'm usually not at all a fan of blue cheeses with some of them making me feel like total crap. I'm looking at you Gorgonzola. However this cheese was incredible. Both the beer and cheese had an intense creamy mouth feel that coated the taste buds and didn't budge. Along with the fruity, malty, and dark sugar flavors the beer provided, the funkiness of the blue was undercut. By far David's best choice in my opinion. 

Keep your eyes peeled for new events we have coming up soon. There's a Spanish style pig roast on the 26th and an all Japanese craft beer dinner in December.