Earlier this week, as a housewarming present, the JA and I were pleased to accept tickets to the Sierra Nevada Beer Dinner held at Victoria Gastro Pub. Get your tastebuds ready, cause here comes the recap!
Beer dinners are a part of the increasing event list at Victoria, and I’ve always wanted to go. Yet, at $75 a ticket, it’s a bit out of our price range. After attending this event, I can tell you that the experience is worth every penny: a five-course meal complete with beer pairing and a chance to speak with a knowledgeable rep for the company is truly remarkable.
Ok, ok. I know. Less yappin’, more food & beer review! The beer description came from the menu provided to us (I’m not that much of a connoisseur), but the photos and thoughts are all mine. We had a full table and I was enjoying the meal, so sometimes the beer didn’t make it into the picture. Hopefully the descriptions will suffice!
1st beer – Sierra Nevada Kellerweis (Hefeweizen, 4.8% ABV). Per the notes given to us on our menus, Kellerweis is one of the only American Hefeweizens made using the traditional Bavarian style of open fermentation. This difficult and super labor-intensive technique adds uncommon depth and flavor complexity. There will be notes of banana, bread malt and citrus fruit with every sip. Our thoughts: Like! The JA likes his beer light, while I’m more of an IPA girl. This is something we could easily split (and both enjoy)!
2nd beer, 1st course – Sierra Nevada Ovila Saison (Saison, 7% ABV) with olive oil poached shrimp, artichokes and roasted tomato. The beer is the collaboration between Sierra Nevada Brewing Co and the monks at the Abbey at New Clairveaux. Ovila Abbey Saison brings the centuries-old monastery brewing tradition to America. Ovila Abbey Saison is complex and contemplative, but also refreshingly dry and drinkable. With earthy and spicy aromas, this rustic saison has notes of green grass and a faint citrus tang. The body is light and layered with fruit and spice accents and a dry, peppery finish. Our thoughts: the beer went well with the food, but it’s nothing that we would drink on our own.
I really liked the fact that the Sierra Nevada rep came in before every course to tell us about the beer that we were drinking. The descriptions on the menu were great, but there’s nothing like hearing a story about how the brewers flew to Europe and visited a monastery, monks in tow. Or how Trappist Monks are present during every stage of the brewing and packaging process of this beer to ensure its authentic nature. Certainly gives you a new appreciation for the time & effort that had gone into creating what you’re drinking.
3rd beer, 2nd course – Sierra Nevada Blonde IPA (6.5% ABV) with pecan encrusted sea scallop, watercress, roasted beets, orange & chili butter. This is a fresh hopped blonde IPA that was brewed for Sierra Nevada’s Beer Camp series. It poured a golden color with a fluffy white head, Aromas of citrus and fresh hops come through on the nose. The flavor profile is slightly sweet with piney hops, citrus fruit and a slightly dry finish. Our thoughts: I loved this beer, as to be expected. The scallops were outstanding and the beets paired well with both the scallops and the beer.
Stay tuned for part 2, including my favorite part of any meal – dessert!