Last Wednesday, November 12th we had the pleasure of attending the Samuel Adams “TwEATup” at August Jack. It featured food items prepared by Chef Bill Taylor to pair with different Samuel Adams beers.
This was my personal favorite from a food-pairing perspective. The typical reaction to most lagers from 'trendy' craft beer fans is to turn their nose up and run. Samuel Adams Boston Lager is arguably the reason for the exciting craft beer scene we see today. It's full bodied and surprisingly rich, and for me that was why it paired so well with the mix of flavors in the dish. Root Veggie chips make an excellent beer snack on their own.
The fish was excellent, and we had another surprising beer on our hands. I had no idea what to expect from a 'West Coast IPA' from Boston. In these parts that combination is almost worth fighting over (calm down hockey fans). I don't think it lived up to the piney citrus notes commonly found in West Coast beers, but it was very tasty with a nice floral character and remarkably well balanced. The hop heads at the table weren't blown away, but we all agreed the beer tasted great, if perhaps maybe off style. Something hoppier would have overpowered the fish.
I've eaten Yak Sirloin a few times but this was the most tender I've ever had it. Dark meats are great for pairing with winter ales and lagers. I found the Winter Lager a little lacking in depth, but it didn't overpower the food, and that's what you're always looking for in a beer pairing. This dish generated the most chatter from our crowd.
Chocolate Cake and dark beer go together amazingly, so a few people were a little surprised there wasn't a stout to go around, especially since Samuel Adams make a great stout in the 13th Hour. The winter-lager soaked cake was awesome and heads around the table were smiling pretty good. Compliments to the chef, I was full!
Make sure you check out August Jack if you enjoy beer and food pairings. They host dinners often and their regular menu also offers beer pairing suggestions. And if you've never had a Samuel Adams Boston Lager, give it a shot, you might be surprised! Check out this great STORIFY from fellow diner @mattdiederichs which gathers all the tweets and posts together.