Beer is a beautiful thing – A perfect balance of four ingredients: water, malted barley, hops, and yeast. Recently I have been hearing vicious lies circulating about this wonderfully complex and diverse beverage causing people to dismiss entire categories or even colors of beer.
Tragic, I know.
Let’s bust open some of the most common beer myths, why don’t we?
The other night when Chef Dan and I were prepping our St. Patrick’s Day feast, we whipped up this simple, yet glorious tapenade as an appetizer. It was an unplanned, throw a bunch of stuff in a food processor kind of thing – but it turned out so awesome I had to share it with you.
There is a good deal of stuff in here, so feel free to tinker with the ratios and ingredients. The most important thing is to load it up with lots of citrusy zest, juice, and herbs and you will be golden. If you’re a salty, olive fiend like me, you will love this.
The other revelatory moment of that night was this stout bread. It was St. Patrick’s day after all and we had made our dry Irish Stout, “Emerald” for the occasion. As you know, I’m rather obsessed with this Nearly No-Knead Bread recipe. I decided on a whim to change it up and add stout instead of a “pale lager” as the recipe suggests.
Bella Luna, a mainstay Italian style restaurant on the East Side of Cincinnati celebrated 13 years last night by launching new menu items, a new bar area called La Bettola with specialty happy hour cocktails and appetizers, and most importantly: new beers brewed exclusively for the restaurant!
For those of you who don’t know the history of Listermann, let me indulge you for a minute. Dan Listermann started his homebrew store in 1991 and quickly became one of the largest homebrew supply stores in the Mid West. About six years ago they took the natural leap and started their own craft brewery. Listermann Brewing Company was founded in 2008. Ever since, they’ve been pumping out unique offerings like the popular Nutcase, a peanut butter porter, Leopold a Belgian blonde, and my personal favorite, Planetary – a beautifully balanced and hop flavor forward American India Pale Ale.
Jason Brewer of Listermann was at the launch to share more about the beers and what else to expect from the collaboration. (His last name is seriously Brewer. Fate? I think so.)
This week I was invited to my first ever cooking class at the Glendalia Culinary Studio by my friend Heather, aka The Food Hussy – she writes a fantastic blog all about travel and food. The Glendalia is a relatively new cooking studio located in the quaint village square of Glendale, Ohio.
Me and hubby had a blast cooking up the most delicious meatloaf I’ve honestly ever had, sipping on Nugget Nectar, one of my favorite beers from Troegs and sharing some homebrew with fellow attendees (yay for BYOB!).
I have the most exciting news for you, my beer and food loving friend!
Over the next few months, my good friend and mentor Chef Dan Higgins and I will be collaBREWating on some absolutely amazing recipes. Basically, he’ll teach, we’ll cook, and I’ll write and pair beers with Dan’s amazing dishes. This ridiculously good Irish Whiskey crème brûlée is the official beginning of the series and I couldn’t be more thrilled.
You might remember Dan from the mind blowing beer and food pairing dinner we did last year. It was seriously one of the best meals of my life. Though in all seriousness this Irish Whiskey Crème Brûlée may win most delicious dessert.