At the 2014 Oregon Garden Brewfest, I went to my first Brewer’s Dinner and loved it. This dinner made me want to be a foodie. The food was so good and the beer just made the whole meal amazing. The only down side was choosing a place to sit. It was like high school all over again. I might have whispered to Tiffany, “This is my nightmare.” Are we cool kids or not? Where do we sit? Clearly, I need to attend more of these events so I can learn a thing or two about seating arrangements. I also loved that each brewery had their Brewmaster stand up and say a few words about each beer.
Here is what we ate and drank:
Featuring Golden Valley’s Pinot Noir Barrel-Aged Geistbock.
Hazelnut crusted goat cheese fritters garnished with micro greens and a lemon tarragon vinaigrette. This was so light and refreshing for being fried cheese.
Featuring Rusty Truck’s (my favorite brewery at the OGBF) Simcoe CDA.
Smoked sausage potato cake topped with garlic and stone ground mustard aioli. This was also delicious snack, like a crab cake and less of a potato latke.
Featuring Bridgeport’s Mettle & Mash Ginger Hibiscus Saison.
Red baby dandelion leaves tossed with boursin cheese, shaved pickled red onion, candied walnuts and dressed with a ginger / sesame vinaigrette. This meal was completely overshadowed by the (tied) best beer at the Brewer’s Dinner. Seriously, mind blowing delicious beer. I love fruit beer and I love ginger. I.was.in.heaven!
Featuring Salem Ale Works’ Juniperus IPA.
Linguini pasta tossed with sautéed garlic, shrimp, laurel and juniper berries in a white wine butter sauce. To quote Tiffany “All the shrimp for me, because Jenna doesn’t eat them, all the beer for Jenna because I can drink it.” Tiffany is allergic to Juniper / pine (debatable), so I got to drink her beer sample and I’m not a big fan of shrimp so she got to eat all my shrimp.
Featuring Cascade’s Honey Ginger Lime.
Pork confit inside half an artichoke topped with a honey, ginger, sake sauce. This was the (tied) best beer at the Brewer’s Dinner. Another phenomenal beer. Really sweet, so I’m not sure if this would make a great pint of beer, but it makes a great couple of samples. The sauce was a great dipping sauce for the artichoke. I’ve never dipped artichoke in anything other than butter. It was fun to try something new.
Featuring Stone’s Stone 2014 Old Guardian Barely Wine.
Chocolate turtle torte with hazelnut and sea salt crust. While I’m not a big fan of barley wine, the torte’s sea salt crust was amazing. I had another glass of Cascade’s Honey Ginger Lime with in and was in heaven. The best way to end a fancy dinner, with a girl’s (other) best friend, chocolate!
Ever been to a Brewer’s Tasting Dinner? What are your tips for attending one?
For the record, this was a media trip, but seriously, I had a blast!