Summer has now passed, which not only means that the great autumn beers
are back, but the Pumphouse Pub
resumes their Beer Tasting Series! I’m always curious to see what Chef Daniela
Iaci will create with her food magic and per usual, she didn’t disappoint. These
dinners just keep getting better and better so if you haven’t checked one out
yet, get on it! Daniela does an amazing job of nailing the pairings and
prepares such succulent and flavourful dishes. I bow to you, Daniela.
Café latte beef carpaccio espresso
crusted beef, crème fraiche & arugula salad
Paired with: Elysian Split Shot Espresso
The carpaccio was paper thin and paired gorgeously with the crème fraiche
and arugula. Balsamic vinegar was drizzled on the arugula and it exuded a
pleasant parmesan aroma.
Stout paired with the first course, you say? Bold, for sure, but it
worked. And the Elysian is such a
fantastic beer. It’s truly one of my favourite stouts – the coffee and
chocolate notes are well balanced and it is a smoooooth beer to drink. Ahhhh. I
love you, Spilt Spot.
Spicy coconut sweet & sour prawn soup
Paired with: The Commons Urban Farmhouse
The chilies that were used in the broth would pack a big, punch you in
the face and take no prisoners bite, should you eat them. And we were warned so
as not to have a surprise should we eat one. But wow, did they ever enhance the
flavour of the soup. It had a great kick to it and kept the sweet and sour from
having their own battle. I loved this soup.
The Commons’ beers are new
to BC and thanks to Beerthirst, they’re
now being imported! We had the Urban Farmhouse Ale with this course. I’m a big
fan of farmhouse ales and this is a great example of one. Floral notes, some
bitterness and a clean finish. This beer is the 2012 World Beer Cup Bronze
Medal winner. Applause, applause. We’ll be stopping in at The Commons’ tasting
room on our next Portland trip (coming up next week!) and will indulge in some
of their other goodies like the Flemish Kiss…
Crispy pork belly crostini with goat
Paired with: North Coast Le Merle
I made some pretty detailed notes on this one, such as SO DAMN GOOD! I’m
no food blogger, but I know what I like in food and beer. And this pork belly
was ah-maze-ing! So flavourful and tender in its porky goodness. I think we all
wanted seconds, and thirds, and and and… Did you catch that I loved this?
Ok, I’ll stop my pork-love-in and get on to the Le Merle. North Coast hits a lot of home
runs, in my opinion (Old Rasputin, Old No. 38 Stout, PranQster and others) and
this Farmhouse Ale is beautiful. Its inspiration comes from the Flanders region
with Belgian yeast, plenty of hops and fruity undertones.
Citrus BBQ chicken tostada
Paired with: Half Pinks Little Scrapper
The citrus flavours on the chicken tostada danced around like a happy
little mariachi band. How Daniela managed to make this pairing a show stopper,
I’ll never know, but she did it. This dish was so flavourful and tasty! Slow
clap time… clap-clap-clap
Half Pints Brewing are
another new addition to BC, again courtesy of Beerthirst, and Little Scrapper
is a great IPA. They sell t-shirts that say “Together we can stop the evil
spread of lite beer”. Yep, we will get along just fine. A hop forward IPA with
gorgeous citrus/grapefruit notes all the while, staying balanced.
Fig & blue cheese crème brulee with
Paired with: Tenaya Creek Double Tandem Double
Did someone say crème brulee? I love crème brulee. I’m not a dessert
person by nature but good luck on me passing this up. Fig and blue cheese might
not be what you’d expect in this dessert but it rocked my world. Daniela, my
hands are getting sore from all the clapping… but well deserved. She outdid
herself with this gem. A few candied gooseberries also came along for the ride
and the brulee was sweet and salty. I saw a tweet from Daniela earlier that morning
saying she didn’t have a proper recipe for this dessert – the way she wanted it,
she obviously put her creative genius and culinary skills to work. Bam! She nailed
The Tandem DIPA from Tenaya Creek
Brewery was a new beer for me and is a limited special release. Grab a
bottle before they’re all gone, beer geeks, as it’s worth a try. It has the
typical characteristics of an IPA with a bit of earthiness. Mild bitterness and
extra hoppy goodness.
These amazing dinners with generous pourings are $40 (not including tip
– please tip their great servers!). Talk about value!
During and after dinner, we were treated to the musical stylings of Dino DiNicolo. What a talented man! I
just checked his tour schedule and it’s amazing he has time to play at the
Pumphouse – check him out!
The next beer dinner will be during BC Craft Beer Month on October 19th.
There will be a six-course brewmaster’s dinner with six BC brewmasters on hand
to pour their own beers and mingle with the crowd. Tickets are $50 and more
information can be found on The Pumphouse’s Facebook page or their website. I’d suggest you get your tickets soon as this
will undoubtedly be a sellout!
Thanks again to The Pumphouse staff, chef Daniela and Beerthirst for
another excellent event. We continue to look forward to the next creative menu!
Sorry about the formatting, Google’s Blogger platform doesn’t like WordPress… 🙂 – Scott