Last night, in case you missed it, Dean and Tony from PBC stopped by to sample five varieties of their craft. As usual, Zeke and I paired a delicious cheese with each offering. Here are the results:
Rowhouse Red with Ossau-Iraty: Rowhouse Red is a classic session beer with notes of toasted malts and grains. Its rustic earthiness was a perfect compainion to Ossau-Iraty, which demonstrates many of the same subtleties of flavor.
Kenzinger with Pantaleo: The crisp, smooth flagship of PBC is relatively mild, so we did not want to overwhelm it with a strong cheese. Nor did we want to create an unexciting pairing. Pantaleo fit the bill perfectly. An aged goat from Sardinia, its undertones of sea salt, black pepper and pistacio amplified the beer’s existing flavors and harmonized beautifully.
Walt Wit with Fleur d’Aunis: When describing the flavor profile of Walt Wit, Dean mentioned grapefruit, and Fleur d’Aunis jumped to the front of my mind. This relatively obscure cheese, a grandiose cousin of Reblochon, is rich, slightly mushroomy and provides a beautiful, fudgy texture that sticks between the teeth and the roof of your mouth. The citrus notes and spices cut right through the fat and offered a tremendous cleansing sensation. This was the perfect palate clenser half-way through the tasting.
Newbold IPA with Beechers Flagship Reserve: The pairings of IPA and Cheddar has become a staple of these events, and not only satisfy the palate but honor history, but more on that in a later post. The Newbold is, well, bold, with nice notes of apricots and citrus that strike a perfect balance. Beecher’s happened to be the Cheddar that worked best, but as a general rule, and IPA works well with any British-style Cheddar. Try it…you’ll agree.
Joe Coffee Porter with Strathdon Blue: We would typically pair Porters with Stilton, because not even Peanut Butter and Jelly approaches those two, but we wanted to spice things up a bit. Strathdon is produced on the other end of Britannia, north-eastern Scotland, and contrasts starkly to Stilton save for the fact that they are both blue. The defining characteristic of this gem is a gentle salinity, the result of its proximity to the coast, that results in an oyster-like flavor. Oysters and Stout, anyone? Smokey and slightly sweet, this pairing was the ideal way to round out our tasting.
If you are unfamiliar, it is important to remind you that these events, held every Wednesday night on 9th Street, are 100% Free. Product purchased to enjoy at home is discounted, and weekly promos are always occuring. So get your friends together for some free fun, conversation and a culinary education.