Posts Tagged ‘Ontario craft beer industry’

Beers made in a church

Posted by David

Monday, February 6th, 2017
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Founded ten years before the micro- and nano- and craft-brewer surge across Ontario, Campbellford’s Church-Key Brewing has always been known for high quality beers. They’ve also developed a reputation for their strong commitment to local sourcing, with many of their ingredients grown within sight of their retired church brewery. We’re very excited to help our Savvy Hip Hops suds-cribers get to know the people behind the products. Read all about it in this month’s Beer Backstory Magazine.

We’re sure you’ll enjoy these delicious, hand-crafted beers. They’ve been chosen just for you to enjoy during the holiday mayhem & while you are relaxing during the holidays too!

Whether you receive the Quick Picks or Taste Case, you will find a variety of bottles of these beers…

Cyser Apple Mead
Braggot Honey Malt
West Coast Pale Ale
Northumberland Ale
Holy Smoke Scotch Ale

Need more beer?

If you would like additional bottles of any beer featured in Savvy Hip Hops, just call our Savvy Brew Crew & we’ll do our best to arrange a special shipment for you.  Put us on speed dial – Savvy Hip Hops Hotline: 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) or cheers@savvycompany.ca

Cheers!
Debbie & the Savvy Brew Crew

 

Holy Beer!
Church-Key Brewing
By David Loan, Sommelier & member of the Savvy Brew Crew

Built in 1878, the Campbellford Methodist Church doesn’t look like a typical brewery. But the decommissioned house of worship was purchased by Brewmaster John Graham in 1999 to begin his own small brewery. It has grown to include The Stinking Rose Pub and Grindhouse Café and to be an important part of the rural landscape.

How did a little brewery in an out-of-the-way small town succeed? Read on!

A step back in time…

John grew up in a small town north of Toronto. By the time he was an adult, though, the fields had been paved over, the farms replaced with shopping malls. “Thirty years of “progress”, John said. “I think it’s a bit short-sighted. I have four kids of my own and I wanted to bring them up in the same rural atmosphere I did. Campbellford is much closer to my upbringing. It’s a 20 or 30 year step back in time.”

Location, location, location

Campbellford, located 30 minutes north of the 401, turned out to be a perfect location for John & his family.  “We’re literally half-way between Toronto and Ottawa,” John said. “They’re the two biggest beer markets in Ontario. We have more than two million residents within an hour’s drive.”

Perhaps just as important, John is able to source many of the ingredients for his beer right in his own community. “We have honey, barley, hops that are grown within sight of the brewery,” John said. “I call it hyper-local, and it’s part of our environmental goals of keeping the supply chain short and part of the economic goals of buying from people who buy from us. It’s a closed loop.”

Crowd-pleasers

John said that serving his beer to a local audience keeps him grounded. “No 90 IBU (International Bitterness Units) monsters that breweries in more populated breweries produce,” he said. “Being in a small town, we have to be a bit more of a crowd-pleaser for our local audience.”

Church-Key has a mission statement, which they call “The Guiding Light”. It embraces the sustainable principles of the brewery. “There’s a consumer awareness that has happened all over the world,” John said. “Not just beer, we’re more aware of what kind of cheese, what kind of bread we’re eating. We want to have a closer connection to what we’re consuming.”

We know you’ll enjoy these crowd-pleasing beers made by John & the folks at the brewery!

 


 

• Savvy Hip Hops Tasting Notes •

David shares his notes about each beer, along with picks on what to serve… and some fun recipes too!

West Coast Ale

In the big family of beers known as India Pale Ales (IPA), East Coast American IPAs have more malt sweetness and less hop bitterness, whereas West Coast ales embrace the hops and often use a lighter malt.

Tasting Notes: A lovely amber colour, this has a refreshing bitterness which matches nicely with its orange and almond flavours. The medium acidity help make it a very well-rounded, easy to drink beer.

Suggested Food Pairing: The hops and acidity will work very nicely with a cheesy pizza or plate of nachos.

 

Cyser: Apple Mead

Cyser is made from honey and apples fermented together. Sometimes described as a wine, other times as a cider, it’s a beautiful hybrid of the two.

Tasting Notes: This Cyser is unfiltered, so it has a lightly cloudy appearance. Gentle and refreshing, there are flavours of green apples, lime cordial, ginger, and yeast. It’s only slightly sweet.  With 8.3% alcohol, you might expect a boozy bounce; in fact, the alcohol is well integrated and this goes down easily. Maybe too easily!

Suggested Food Pairing: We would love this with an apple, pecan, and blue cheese salad. The delicate sweetness of the Cyser and the pungent blue cheese will play very well together. See recipe, below.

 

Northumerland Ale

Brewmaster John Graham says this beer – the first product made by Church-Key Brewing – is based on a recipe typical of the beer served in Northumberland County taverns in the 1940s and ‘50s.

Tasting Notes: The beer pours a golden colour with a light foam. Citrusy hops and a crisp finish make this a great everyday beer.

Suggested Food Pairing: This will be a lovely pairing with a white fish dish, such as Jamie Oliver’s Baked White Fish recipe, below.

 

Braggot Honey Malt

Another mead-style beverage, Braggot is a spiced honey wine.

Tasting Notes: The honey is apparent from the moment you pop the cap, but it’s very subtle when you taste the mead. The mineral and citrusy notes balance the sweet honey very well, and there are hints of clover and vanilla.

Suggested Food Pairing: If you’re looking for a drink to go with your sweet and savoury Chicken and Waffles, here it is!  See the recipe below.

 

Holy Smoke: Peat-smoked Scotch ale

For those who love campfires, Hot Rods, and Islay whisky, this is the perfect beer. Ten per cent of the malt has been roasted over a peat fire, giving it a smoky complexity and finish.

Tasting Notes: Almost opaque and with a nice foam, the campfire notes are apparent from the first pour. There are also some flavours dark chocolate, vanilla, and molasses. The smoky finish is very long-lasting. 6.2% ABV.

Suggested Food Pairing: We picture this as a Sunday afternoon après-ski with a hot and spicy bowl of black bean chili (see recipe, below). The perfect way to end the weekend.

Recipes to enjoy with the featured Savvy Hip Hops 

 

With Cyser Apple Mead…

Apple, Pecan, and Blue Cheese Salad with Dried Cherries
Recipe and Photo: Food.com

Ingredients

12 ounces salad greens (spring mix)
2 whole apples, cored, sliced very thin
12 cup pecan halves
14 cup dried cherries
6 ounces blue cheese, cut into chunks
1 Tablespoon heaping Dijon mustard
1 Tablespoon maple syrup (to taste)
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar (to taste)
14 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste

Method                                                                                                     

Add greens, apple slices, pecan halves, dried cherries, and blue cheese chunks into a large salad bowl.
In a small jar, mix Dijon, maple syrup, vinegar, olive oil, and salt and pepper. Put the lid on the jar and shake well to mix.
Pour a little salad dressing over the top of the salad and toss to combine. Taste salad and add more salad dressing to taste.

 

With Braggot Honey Malt…

Chicken and Waffles
Recipe and photo: FoodNetwork.com

Ingredients

Vegetable oil, for shallow frying
1/4 cup hot sauce
1 large egg, lightly beaten
8 chicken tenders (about 1 pound)
3/4 cup instant flour
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 scallions, sliced, plus more for garnish
1 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
4 buttermilk or Belgian-style frozen waffles
Maple syrup, for serving

Method

Heat about 1 inch of oil in a large cast-iron or heavy-bottomed skillet over high heat. Whisk the hot sauce and egg in a medium bowl; toss the chicken in the mixture to coat.

Combine the flour, poultry seasoning, and salt and pepper to taste in a medium bowl. Set aside 3 tablespoons seasoned flour in a separate bowl; dredge the chicken in the remaining seasoned flour until coated, shaking off any excess.

Place the chicken in the hot oil and fry until golden and cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes per side, turning once. Transfer to a rack to cool slightly; discard the oil.

Melt the butter in the same skillet and whisk in the reserved seasoned flour until smooth. Whisk in the scallions, then slowly pour in the broth. Bring to a simmer, whisking until the gravy is smooth.

Meanwhile, toast the waffles.

Place a waffle on each plate and drizzle with maple syrup. Top with chicken and gravy and garnish with scallions.

 

With Northumberland Ale…

Baked White Fish
Recipe and photo: JamieOliver.com

Ingredients

3 cloves of garlic
1 bunch of fresh basil
Olive oil
1 fresh red chilli
2x 400 g tins of quality plum tomatoes
Red wine vinegar
4 pieces of white fish fillets (150 g each) – such as cod, whiting, pollock, skin off, pin-boned, from sustainable sources, ask your fishmonger
1 handful of black olives, (stone in)
1 tablespoon capers

Method

To make the sauce, peel and finely slice the garlic cloves. Pick the basil leaves and finely slice the stalks.

Heat a good couple of lugs of oil in a large pan over medium heat; add the garlic and basil stalks. Pierce the chilli once with a knife so it doesn’t explode when frying, then add to the pan. Fry gently until the garlic is soft but not coloured, stirring occasionally.

Add the tomatoes and season lightly with sea salt and black pepper, then simmer gently over a low heat for 30 minutes, or until thickened and slightly reduced.

When the time’s up, remove the chilli, and break up the tomatoes with the back of a spoon. Taste and adjust the seasoning, if needed, then add a tiny swig of red wine vinegar to give it a little twang.

Preheat the oven to 220°C/425°F.

Pour the tomato sauce into a 20cm x 30cm roasting tray. Season the fish fillets on both sides with a little salt and pepper, then place on top of the sauce.

Squash the olives, using the base of a jar or something heavy, and remove the stones. Sprinkle into the tray, along with the capers and most of the basil leaves over the fish.

Cook in the oven for around 15 minutes or until the fish is cooked through – check by cutting into the thickest part of one or two of the fillets; they should be pearly white and not transparent.

 

With Holy Smoke Peat-smoked Scotch Ale…

Smoky Black Bean Chili
Recipe and Photo: Gimmesomeoven.com

Ingredients

1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 medium white onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 bottle beer (or chicken/vegetable broth)
3 (15 oz. each) can black beans, drained and rinsed
2 (15 oz.) cans diced tomatoes and green chiles
2 chipotle peppers in adobo, chopped
2 tsp. ground cumin
2 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. salt

optional toppings: chopped fresh cilantro, diced avocado, shredded cheese, sour cream, salsa

 

Method

Heat oil in a large saucepan or stockpot over medium-high heat until shimmering.  Add onion and sauté for 5 minutes until translucent, stirring occasionally. Add garlic and continue sautéeing for 2 minutes until fragrant.

Add the beer (or broth), black beans, diced tomatoes and green chiles, chipotle in adobo, cumin, chili powder, oregano, and salt. Stir to combine.

Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for at least 10 minutes. Season with additional salt and pepper if needed. Serve warm, garnished with optional toppings.

 Enjoy your Savvy Hip Hops!

All photos of the brewery & products (unless noted) were provided by Church-Key.
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No Prohibition for Waller Street Brewing!

Posted by Katy

Sunday, August 21st, 2016
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Early this month, Ottawa’s smallest brewery – Waller Street Brewing – celebrated their 1st year of operation. This brewery is a hidden gem in Ottawa. Located on one of the shortest streets in downtown Ottawa (many locals don’t even know it by name), the brewery is open three days a week to the public with limited tap across the city.

Waller Street offers its brews in 750ml growlers only. Well…that is until now. Special for Savvy Hip Hops Waller Street has hand bottled their beers for this month’s shipment and for our Taste Case subscribers, the brewery team waxed their Black Double IPA and Scotch River Sour in bottles meant for cellaring. Take the opportunity and stash a few bottles away and learn how beer flavours can change and develop over time.

 

Open your Savvy Hip Hops & you will find:

…in your Quick Picks

-Bootleg Blonde
-Speakeasy Red – mini growlerSavvy Hip Hops beer of the month club
-Hideaway Hefe
-Moonlight Porter
-Blind Pig IPA
-Black IIPA
-Scotch River Sour

 

…In your Taste Case

– Bootleg Blonde
-Speakeasy Red  mini growler
-Hideaway Hefe
-Moonlight Porter  mini growler
-Blind Pig IPA – 2 bottles
-Blind Barron-
-Black IIPA – cellar packed with wax
-Scotch River Sour cellar packed with wax

Need more beer?
If you would like additional bottles of any beer featured in Savvy Hip Hops, just call our Savvy Brew Crew & we’ll do our best to arrange a special shipment for you. Put us on speed dial – Savvy Hip Hops Hotline: 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) or cheers@savvycompany.ca

Cheers!
Debbie & the Savvy Brew Crew

 

Introducing…

Waller Street Brewing

 

by Katy Watts, Cicerone & member of the Savvy Brew Crew

 

 

Back in the history books…

PIC Waller streetThe Ontario Temperance Act was passed in 1916 that led to the Prohibition of alcohol in Ontario. As your fore fathers may have told you, this wasn’t a popular movement, yet there were sneaky ways to get around the system or hide your consumption from the government.

One popular method was to obtain a prescription from a doctor and buy your alcohol from a drug store. Interestingly, during the years of 1923 & 1924 over 810,000 prescriptions were written for alcohol in Ontario! Another way was to visit a speakeasy or a Blind Pig – a private saloon that was only accessible with a password. In these ‘secret places’ bootlegged alcohol was sold and enjoyed.

Over time, the Temperance Act was repealed in 1927, but the era of neighborhood speakeasies and creatively bootlegged alcohol left their mark and even offered some inspiration to brewers, including modern day ‘Bootician’ Marc-André Chainey (right in photo).

 

Where Old meets New…

Waller Street Brewery is located in the basement of a heritage building, on the corner of Waller Street and Besserer in the heart of downtown Ottawa. Walking down the steep stairs, it almost feels like sneaking away from a group of Teetotaler’s to get your after-work fix. Thankfully there isn’t a password required at the brewery door! Inside is a beautiful stained glass and mahogany bar from the previous occupant – Alfie’s, a sports bar. To the left, running deeper into the space, is the brewery operations. “Want a brewery tour?”, laughs Marc. “The best place to stand is with your back to the beer fridge & look left & right.” Yes, it is that small. Imagine the size of a two car garage.

 

Engineering a Brewery

Deceivingly encased in dark wood, the brewery can surprisingly churn out 1,200 litres of beer each week. And that is where Marc-André gets creative, much like his prohibition counterparts.

 

Engineer by Day. Bootician by Night

An engineer by trade, his approach to brewing is a little different than others, opting to experiment and understand the details and science behind ingredients, processes – even the drinker. “Every time we try something new, we learn a little bit more about the hops, the yeast; but also we learn a little bit more about our customers and what you like.”

Being confined by the space in the basement of the historic building, which can only fit 30 people at a time, doesn’t seem to bother the brewery team. Instead of following the strategy of producing more beer, they are putting the microscope on the beer – literally! Yes, Waller Street actually has a microbiologist working for them…That is when he isn’t filling kegs, cleaning kegs or moving kegs. Like everyone in the brewery team, they all pitch in.

We won’t see Marc-André piecing together expansion plans for the brewery – ever. The historic building constantly provides him with challenges of fitting modern day equipment through small doorways, not to mention steep stairwells and a maze of corridors.

We will however, see him experimenting more with sour beer recipes, processes and continuing support of their Flights of Hope project, where $2.00 from each beer flight goes to charity.

Marc-André & his sister Marie-Eve along with the rest of the brewery team invite you to come by to visit them at the brewery….and when you do, be sure to tell them you are a Savvy Hip Hops suds-scriber….they are ready roll out the red carpet for you!

 

Here’s to Marc-André & the brew crew at Waller Street!

 

Savvy Hip Hops Tasting Notes 

Katy shares her notes about each beer, along with her picks on what to serve … and some fun recipes too!

Bootleg Blonde

This 5% Alcohol by Volume (ABV), 21 International Bitterness Units (IBU) Blonde Ale is brewed using an in-house yeast strain which gives a little spice to the introductory brew.
Tasting Notes: Blonde Ale’s are fairly straightforward with some grain, bread-y malts and some earth-y hop spice to add balance. However, the in-house yeast strain adds a lively twist to the palate with subtle spicy phenols.

Suggested Food Pairing: With less than a month of summer left, enjoy Bootleg Blonde with a green salad with light vinaigrette or serve alongside an angel food cake with fresh berries. I would recommend to avoid strong flavoured foods, especially those with heavy spicing that would overpower the beer.

 

waller ombre

Speakeasy Red

At 4.4% ABV and 30 IBU, Waller Street prefers not to put this beer in a specific style category, instead label it as a light beer with big flavour.

Tasting Notes: Speakeasy Red starts with a toasted rye spice – almost peppery – leading to yeast-y fruit esthers, and a tropical hop bitterness.

Suggested Food Pairing: The rye malt and Belgian yeast would go well with Jamaican-style Jerk Chicken, herbed roasted potatoes or Asiago cheese.

 

 

Moonlight Porter

Marc-André claims this beer was an accident – a happy one that we are glad he made. At 6.3% ABV and 50 IBU this American Porter is a balance of decadent malt and American hops.

Tasting Notes: True decadence. Coffee, roast, dark chocolate with wonderful dark fruit flavours leading into a mild bitterness. Surprisingly with the strength of the flavours (and alcohol) it’s very drinkable.

Suggested Food Pairing: Chocolate, chocolate and more chocolate! I have heard from friends that a good cigar pairs perfectly with this beer too.

 

Hideaway Hefe

Waller Street’s summer seasonal is a German-style Hefeweizen that’s 5% ABV and 18 IBUs. A Hefeweizen is a wheat beer (weisse) with yeast (hefe).

Tasting Notes: Lots of yeast-y banana flavours with some bubblegum and clove peaking through. Spicy hops are there, although fairly subdued. The body is light and the carbonation is crisp – it goes down easily in the sun.

Suggested Food Pairing: Yes, bring on the schnitzel! But, did you know that Hefeweizen is a great match for sushi? The wheat and banana sweetness will work perfectly with delicate fish flavours, especially if you’re choosing sashimi over rolls.

 

group shot waller

Blind Pig IPA

Mark m y words, this isn’t your typical India Pale Ale. Ringing in at 6.7% ABV and 68 IBU it was brewed using a mixed primary fermentation containing Brettanomyces.

Tasting Notes: Take a moment to enjoy the aroma of this beer…It’s truly amazing – peach, mango, orange, grapefruit – it really draws you in for a gulp! The flavour mirrors the aroma with the malts hidden behind the tropical hop flavours letting the hops shine as they should.

Suggested Food Pairing: Lately I’ve been enjoying cheese with IPAs, especially salty cheeses. My favourites have been fresh cheese curds (squeak squeak!), sharp cheddar or Parmegiano Reggiano.

Tip from our Cheese Sommelier: keep cheese curds on the counter. That way they will continue to have the squeaky characteristic that we all love. As soon as you refrigerate, the squeak disappears.

 

 

Black IIPA

This big 8.5% ABV and 85 IBUs combines the roast and malt qualities of a stout while having an assertive hop profile. Marc-André brewed this just in time for Waller Street’s 2nd Birthday Party, which coincidentally landed on the same day as International Beer Day (August 5).

Tasting Notes: This is a flavour war! Dark chocolate, coffee roast, dark fruit flavours clash against an intense citrus hop note leaving your palate with a small residual sweetness to balance the bitterness from the roast and hops.

Suggested Food Pairing: Grilled meats, especially a thick steak grilled to perfection (medium rare for me). Enjoy how the malt compliments the charring of the meat and the hops add a wonderful umami-like contrast.

 

Scotch River Sour

This ‘Woodland Sour’ unique to Waller Street Brewery is 6.8% ABV and 8 IBU. It’s brewed only once a year using fresh local spruce tips and birch sap from the banks of the Scotch River east of Ottawa. The souring comes from a proprietary house yeast strain named “Hercules Lacto” isolated from the brewery.

Tasting Notes: This might be a new taste experience for you, it was for me. At the front is the tartness, don’t worry, it isn’t that tart (but it may still surprise), with a background of pine or spruce. The flavours layer, as you drink or as it warms there’s a slight woody sweetness at the end.

Suggested Food Pairing: Pairing this beer is difficult, but I’d go with a long hike in the woods with a sharp cheddar sandwich and a half growler of Scotch River Sour in your kit.

 

Blind Barron

overhead wallerYou may have had a sour beer and an India Pale Ale, but have you had a sour IPA? Blind Baron is a 6.5% ABV, 85 IBU fermented with Waller Street’s house yeast strain isolated from a previous wild fermentation.

Tasting Notes: Starts sweet with cereal notes from the malt, tea and then dives into a fruity mix of lemon and peach. There’s a touch of yeast funk, but the acidity isn’t high – just enough to be noticeable, but turn smooth quick.

Suggested Food Pairing: The fruity flavours of the hops and slight tartness makes me think this would go well with a refreshing summer salad layered with brie. Or maybe as a nice contrast to a fatty eggs benedict as a Sunday brunch.

 

 


 Recipes to enjoy with the featured Savvy Hip Hops 

 

With Bootleg Blonde
Triple Dipped Fried Chicken

Recipe & photo from All Recipes

Triple Dipped Fried ChickenIngredients

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ tablespoons garlic salt
1 tablespoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon paprika
½ tablespoon poultry seasoning
1 ⅓ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
2 egg yolks, beaten
1 ½ cup Bootleg Blonde
1 quart vegetable oil for frying
1 (3 pound) whole chicken, cut into pieces

 

Method

In one medium bowl, mix together 3 cups of flour, garlic salt, 1 tablespoon black pepper, paprika and poultry seasoning. In a separate bowl, stir together 1 1/3 cups flour, salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, egg yolks and Bootleg Blonde. You may need to thin with additional beer if the batter is too thick.

Heat the oil in a deep-fryer to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Moisten each piece of chicken with a little water, then dip in the dry mix. Shake off excess and dip in the wet mix, then dip in the dry mix once more.

Carefully place the chicken pieces in the hot oil. Fry for 15 to 18 minutes, or until well browned. Smaller pieces will not take as long. Large pieces may take longer. Remove and drain on paper towels before serving.

 

With Moonlight Porter
Moonlight Cake
Recipe from Waller Street!

IngredientsWaller Street Brewing beer bottles

Caramel Beer Sauce

1 cup brown sugar
¼ cup Waller St. Moonlight Porter
¼ cup butter, unsalted softened
2 tablespoons corn syrup

Cake

1 cup Waller St. Moonlight Porter
½ cup water
1 ¼ cup dates pitted and chopped
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
1 ½ cup unbleached all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
1 egg

Method

Caramel Beer Sauce

In a small saucepan, bring all ingredients to a boil. Stir until smooth. Set aside.

Cake

With the rack in the middle position, preheat the oven to 180 °C (350 °F). Butter a 20 cm (8-inch) square pyrex mould. Set aside.

In a saucepan, bring Midnight Porter and water to a boil. Remove from heat and add dates, baking soda and vanilla extract. Mix well. Set aside.

In a bowl, mix flour and baking powder. Set aside.

In a second bowl, cream butter with brown sugar using a mixer. Add the egg and mix until smooth. At low speed, stir in flour mixture alternately with the dates mixture.

Pour dough in the mould. Bake for 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the centre of the cake comes out clean.

Poke holes in the cake using a fork and gently pour half of the caramel. Let cool. Cut into 9 squares.

When serving, top cake with remaining caramel sauce. Cake keeps 3 to 4 days at room temperature. Caramel sauce keeps one week refrigerated.

 

 

Another recipe with Moonlight Porter
Beef Tenderloin with Porter Reduction
Recipe & photo from Craft Beer

Waller Street Brewing - cellar beer with waxIngredients

2 – 4 tsp steak rub
4 (4 – 6 ounce) beef tenderloin steaks, fat trimmed
1 tsp olive oil
6 ounces of Moonlight Porter
2 tbsp brown sugar
Crumbled blue cheese

Method

Preheat oven to 450°F. Rub steak seasoning over both sides of steaks.

Heat olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add steaks; cook 2 minutes on each side or until browned. If the steaks are large enough to sear the sides slightly, do so. Searing it will help keep all the juices in during the baking stage.

Remove steaks from pan; place on aluminum foil on a baking sheet. Bake at 450°F for 4 to 5 minutes on each side, or until desired degree of doneness. If you don’t have a food thermometer, I highly recommend one. Based on the internal temp, I cooked the steaks for about 10 minutes.

While steaks bake, combine Moonlight Porter and brown sugar in a skillet, cook on low heat and stir. Cook until mixture is slightly syrupy (6 – 8 minutes)

Once the steaks are out of the oven, wrap them in the aluminum foil that you put on the baking sheet. This keeps them warm, while you let them set for 2-3 minutes.

Serve steaks with reduced sauce; sprinkle evenly with cheese

With Hideaway Hefe

Wheat Beer Roasted Chicken
Recipe & photo from Leite’s Culinara

Wheat Beer Roasted ChickenIngredients

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 whole chicken (about 3 1/2 pounds)
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 large garlic clove, smashed and peeled
1/2 orange
1 cup Hideaway Hefe
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon water

 

Method

Preheat the oven to 450°F (232°C) and adjust the oven rack to the middle position. Work together the butter, orange zest, coriander, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a small bowl with a fork or the back of a wooden spoon.

Rinse the chicken and pat it dry. Gently run your fingers between the chicken skin and the meat, loosening the skin while being careful not to tear it. Push the butter under the skin, as far over the thighs and drumsticks as your fingertips or the handle of a wooden spoon will reach. Massage the chicken skin from the outside to spread the butter evenly over the chicken. Season the chicken inside and out with the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and the pepper. Place the garlic and orange, cut into chunks, in the cavity. If desired, loosely tie the legs together with kitchen string.

Place the chicken in a flameproof roasting pan that’s not much larger than the chicken itself. (A large cast-iron skillet works quite nicely.) Roast the chicken, liberally basting it with some of the Hefe every 15 minutes, until the skin is golden and begins to pull away from the base of the drumsticks and the juice runs clear, about 50 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a cutting board and let it rest for 15 minutes before carving.

Meanwhile, set the roasting pan over a burner and add the remaining beer. Bring the liquid to a simmer, scraping up any browned bits. Stir together the cornstarch and water in a small bowl, then stir the resulting cornstarch slurry into the simmering pan juices. Simmer the gravy, stirring constantly, until slightly thickened, about 1 minute. If desired, strain the gravy. Cut the strings from the legs, if using, and carve the chicken. Transfer the pieces to a platter and spoon the gravy over the chicken or pass it on the side.

Enjoy your Savvy Hip Hops!

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Hop on board with Railway City Brewery!

Posted by Debbie

Thursday, July 28th, 2016
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With the sultry days of summer upon us, is there anything better than that first sip of an ice cold beer? Yup – how about 10 beers from a multiple-award winning brewery in Southwestern Ontario? This is Savvy Hip Hop’s second feature of Railway City Brewing Company. Suds-cribers response was so incredible last year that we’ve brought them back for another round. I could insert so many train related puns here, but I will hold off!

And with a number of cool new releases – some canned just this past weekend – you’re in for a treat. Railway City is a fantastic brewery founded in St Thomas – a small town with a lot of history. Read all about it on the following pages of this month’s Beer Backstory Magazine. Whether you are receiving a Quick Picks or a Taste Case, hands down, you’re in for a treat. Make room in your fridge for these unique and flavourful brews! Open your Savvy Hip Hops & you will find cans, bottles and growlers of…

hiphops_large-292x300– Iron Spike Blonde
– Iron Spike Copper
– Iron Spike Amber
– Crew Craft Lager
– Orange CreamsicAle
– Honey Elixir
– Dead Elephant Ale
– Whitty Traveller
– Express India Session Lager
– Black Coal Stout 

Need more beer? 
If you would like additional bottles of any beer featured in Savvy Hip Hops, just call our Savvy Brew Crew & we’ll do our best to arrange a special shipment for you. Put us on speed dial – Savvy Hip Hops Hotline: 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) or cheers@savvycompany.ca

Cheers!
Debbie & the Savvy Brew Crew

 

Full Steam Ahead!
Railway City Brewing Company

by David Loan, Sommelier & member of the Savvy Brew Crew

All Paul Corriveau wanted was to play with some interesting beer recipes. “I was the guy who liked going to the LCBO to buy individual beers and built my own 6 pack,” Paul said. “I never bought a two-four. People would come over and I’d have all these unique beers to sample.”

Passion for beer

Back in 2007, Paul and his friend were experimenting with different recipes at their local U-Brew. Times were tough. St. Thomas, a small city just south of London, Ontario, was suffering an economic downturn. In its early days, it was a railroad hub with as many as twenty-six railways passing through town (hence the town’s nickname: Railway City). As the railways began to close in the 1950s, St. Thomas remade itself as an auto industry town. Eventually, Ford operations closed, Sterling Trucks left, and the town’s citizens had little money to spend.

With the U-Brew business beginning to fail, Paul had an idea. Why not turn their passion for beer into a new industry for the town?

New hope

Now entering their ninth year, Railway City Brewing has expanded, and expanded again. They employ over 40 people, and they are a centre for Southwestern Ontario’s craft beer movement.

“Our town was losing jobs and we wanted to create new employment opportunities,” Paul said. “We were able to give our community some hope.”

Award-winning beer

With just a few bars at that time interested in craft beer, Railway City depended on its own store to sell their product. They found themselves quickly embraced by the “buy local” movement, and a craft beer consumer base began to emerge.

At the same time, their products began to win accolades across Canada. Dead Elephant Ale – commemorating P.T. Barnum’s famous elephant Jumbo, who died in St. Thomas after being hit by a train – was chosen for the Ontario Legislature’s official beer menu. And a number of Railway City beers have won Gold, Silver and Bronze medals at the Canadian Brewers Awards.

railway cityStill playful

Today, Paul is the brewery’s V.P. of Sales and Marketing. He encourages the staff to keep trying new things. Case in point, last month, they introduced Orange CreamsicAle, an homage to a classic frozen summer treat. “We made 2000 litres and it sold out in 2.5 days…all at the brewery,” said Paul. “We can hardly keep up.” This beer along with a few others is one of the reasons we delayed the delivery of your Savvy Hip Hops! We received the first cans off the line of batch #2 of CreamsicAle.

Recently, they held a contest among Ontario home brewers, choosing a winning recipe from the thirty entrants. “We’ll work with the winner and make a commercial batch from their recipe,” Paul said. “It’s one of the ways we like to stay true to our craft beer roots.”


Here’s to keeping Railway City Brewing’s success on track!

 

-Savvy Hip Hops Tasting Notes –

David and Debbie share their notes about each beer, along with tip on what to serve and some fun recipes too! With so many beers – where to start? We have listed the beers here from lightest to heaviest to give you an idea of what you will find when you crack the beer open.


iron spike blondeIron Spike Blonde

Part of Railway Brewery’s “Mainline” series, this is a crowd pleaser. It measures up at 4.3% alcohol by volume (ABV) and 14 International Bitterness Units (IBU).

Tasting Notes: With its pale honey colour and light froth, this has a clean, wet stone flavour and moderate bitterness. Citrusy hops round out the clean American Blonde style.

Suggested Food Pairing: A great lunchtime beer, you’ll be able to enjoy your pint with a Rueben sandwich or a plate of mussels and still have a productive afternoon.

craft crew brewCrew Craft Lager

Dedicated to “all the hard workers out there”, Crew Craft has 4.8% ABV and 15 IBU.

Tasting Notes: Similar in appearance to the Iron Spike Blonde, this one ups the game with slightly more alcohol and a hoppier, drier finish. We like its Earl Grey Tea notes and crisp mouthfeel.

Suggested Food Pairing: This is a perfect match with spicy food from your favourite Thai or Szechuan joint. Or make some easy Phad Thai at home! (Recipe below)


Orange CreamsicAlecreamsicle ale

Railway City hand-zests oranges and adds real vanilla bean and oats to the mix to create this unique and hard-to-get seasonal special. It measures up at 4.8% ABV and 8 IBU. A Savvy favourite, Debbie described it as, “Beer you won’t want to share!”

Tasting Notes: The vibrant orange colour leads to a big vanilla nose. The orange is subtle, with the vanilla notes balancing the citrus perfectly. It has a fresh and natural flavour – more fresh squeezed orange juice than orange soda. David described it as the childhood treat “all grown up”.

Suggested Food Pairing: While enjoyable perfectly well on its own, we believe this is a lovely accompaniment to an afternoon picnic. Greek salad, deli meats, hard cheeses will all work with this elegant quencher.

honey elixerHoney Elixir

Made with local honey (the label boasts that there are 22 pounds of honey in each batch), this is made in an English Brown Ale style. 5% ABV and 29 IBUs.

Tasting Notes: A rich buckwheat honey colour, we loved the surprising gingerbread aromas and flavours of roasted grain, honey, and a hint of green herbs.

Suggested Food Pairing: We love the bread-and-honey impression of this beer and feel it’s a sweet match to quinoa, chickpea, and cumin salad (recipe below).


Dead Elephant Aledead elephant

This award-winning, highly praised IPA has become Railway City’s flagship beer. Somewhat higher in alcohol than most of their products, it hits 6.5% ABV and 46 IBUs.

Tasting Notes: Gold-amber in colour with lacy foam, this immediately smells of spicy hops. It has flavours of caramel, roasted nuts, and even invokes cream corn. The finish is grapefruit pith, dry and citrus. This is a big, flavourful beer that will excite most palates!

Suggested Food Pairing: We’d love this with corn on the cob, especially if there were a variety of toppings available. See some favourite corn variations in the recipes section below.


The Witty Travellerwitty traveler

This is a limited edition seasonal and takes its name from the global influences of fruit, spice, and hops ingredients that make up its mix. 4.5% ABV and 15% IBUs.

This is made in the “Witbier” style, described by online beer resource Beer Advocate a Belgian-style ale that’s very pale and cloudy in appearance due to it being unfiltered and the high level of wheat, and sometimes oats, that’s used in the mash. Always spiced, generally with coriander, orange peel and other oddball spices or herbs in the back ground.”

Tasting Notes: The cloudy, pale appearance of wheat beer is apparent here, and it has a lovely, complex set of aromas: Christmas cake, yellow flowers, and lemongrass. Tasting it gives more definition to the array: the spices are clove and allspice, with orange and toast. The hops aren’t apparent, but there is a small amount of bitterness at the end.

Suggested Food Pairing: Is it selfish to want this with shellfish? Lobster, raw oysters, or mussels in tomato garlic broth (see recipe below).

amber spikeIron Spike Copper

Here’s a medium-full bodied ale that offers a creamy mouthfeel and great hoppy finish. This hits 4.4% ABV and 15.9 IBU.

Tasting Notes: The beautiful burnt orange colour of this beer stands out, as do the notes of toasted grain, hops, and butterscotch. There’s some fruit and vanilla, too, lending it a rich, complex character.

Suggested Food Pairing: We’d love to enjoy this beer with a big grilled cheese sandwich, made with old cheddar and thick-cut bread.


Iron Spike Amberiron amber

Rusty red in colour, this is full bodied and creamy. 4.6% ABV and 30 IBU.

Tasting Notes: Spiced tea came quickly to mind with this pretty beer. There are notes of caramel and dark rye bread, subtle hints of apple and spice, and – is that banana? There’s some good hoppy bitterness to balance that fruit and spice, especially on the beer’s long finish.

Suggested Food Pairing: Buckwheat ramen noodles are readily available in the Asian section of most grocery stores, and cook faster than pasta. Try them as an alternative to rice with your favourite stir fry recipe and accompany the meal with this big ale.

IPAExpress India Session Lager

At the time of publication, this beer hadn’t yet been released, so we depended on Railway City to provide some notes. Here’s what Paul Corriveau has to say:

“Feel like something with a little more flavour than a lager, but not quite the punch of an India Pale Ale? Well, we put two craft favourites together to create Express: Indian Session Lager.
Brewers Notes: Express pours a golden straw colour with white lacing. Complex hop aromas of citrus, tropical fruits and pine fill the nose. Bright lemon, orange, pineapple and mango meld seamlessly with pine notes over a crisp and light malt background, followed by a pleasant, lingering bitterness that’s not overpowering.

Suggested Food Pairing: It’s hop-forward lager style is perfect for sessioning on the patio or with barbecue.

black coal lagerBlack Coal Stout

Railway City’s signature dark ale, this stout pours with a thick foam and deep brown colour. It’s flavourful and filling! 6% ABV and 46 IBU.

Tasting Notes: Everything a stout should be: flavours of chocolate and espresso; dark roasted malt; and even some cola, vanilla, and walnuts! It’s rich and creamy, with some bitterness to pair with the sweet malt notes. Debbie calls these “bench press beers” because of their weight!

Suggested Food Pairing: David confessed that he want to drink this alongside some pecan-bourbon pie, while Debbie feels that it needs to go with onion soup made with a measure of this stout. Perhaps you should try both & make a meal around this beer!

 

-Recipes to enjoy with the featured Savvy Hip Hops-

 

With Crew Craft Lager

Phad Thai

Recipe and photo: RasaMalaysia.com

Ingredientspad thai

4 oz packaged rice noodles
2 tablespoons oil
1 clove garlic, finely minced
4 oz medium-sized shrimp, shelled and deveined
2 oz fried firm tofu, cut into slices
1 large egg
4–6 oz bean sprouts
1 oz Chinese chives or scallions, cut into 2-inch lengths
2 tablespoons crushed peanuts
Lime wedges
1 1/2 tablespoons fish sauce
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
1/2 teaspoon chili powder or more to taste

Method

Follow the package instructions to boil the dry rice noodles. The rice noodles should be soft (but still chewy and not mushy) after boiling. Rinse the boiled noodles with cold running water.

Mix all the ingredients in the Seasonings in a small bowl until well combined and the sugar completely dissolved, set aside.

Heat up a skillet on high heat and add the oil. As soon as the oil is heated, add the garlic into the skillet and start stirring until you smell the aroma of the garlic.

Add the shrimp and the tofu pieces into the skillet and continue stirring. As soon as the shrimp changes color, add the noodles into the skillet and stir continuously, about 30 seconds.

Use the spatula to push the noodles to one side of the skillet, and crack the egg on the empty side of the skillet. Use the spatula to break the egg yolk and blend with the egg white, let cook for about 30 seconds.

Combine the egg and the noodles, and add the Seasoning sauce. Stir to combine well with the noodles.

Next, add the bean sprouts and chives and continue stirring. As soon as the bean sprouts are cooked, stir-in the crushed peanut. Turn off the heat and serve the Pad Thai immediately with the lime wedges.

 

With Honey Elixir

Quinoa with Grilled Zucchini, Garbanzo Beans & Cumin

Recipe and photo: Epicurious.com

Ingredientsquinoa

1 15-ounce can garbanzo beans (chickpeas), drained
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
2 garlic cloves, peeled
2 teaspoons cumin seeds
1 teaspoon turmeric, divided
1 teaspoon smoked paprika, divided
2 cups water
1 cup quinoa (about 6 ounces), rinsed well, drained
1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
1 1/2 pounds medium zucchini (about 5), trimmed, quartered lengthwise
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
4 green onions, thinly sliced
1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley

Method

Combine garbanzo beans and lemon juice in large bowl. Add 3 tablespoons oil; press in garlic and stir to combine. Let marinate at least 15 minutes and up to 2 hours.

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add cumin seeds, 1/2 teaspoon turmeric, and 1/2 teaspoon paprika; stir until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add 2 cups water, quinoa, and coarse salt; bring to simmer, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer until all water is absorbed, about 16 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare barbecue (medium high heat). Place zucchini on rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon oil. Sprinkle with ground cumin, 1/2 teaspoon turmeric, and 1/2 teaspoon paprika. Toss to coat evenly.

Place zucchini on grill; sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Grill until tender and browned on all sides, 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer to work surface. Cut crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces. Add zucchini, green onions, and parsley, then garbanzo bean mixture to quinoa. Toss to blend. Season with salt and pepper. DO AHEAD: Can be made 2 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature.

 

With Dead Elephant

Grilled Corn on the Cob: variationsmexican corn

Recipes and Photo: TheKitchn.com

There are 2 ways to grill corn:

  1. Peel back the husk (but don’t detach it) to remove the silk underneath. Push the husk back up and grill the corn on your barbecue for about 15 minutes.
  1. Husk the corn as usual. Brush the corn with a little oil and grill for 10-15 minutes, turning often. This gives nicely charred marks on the corn, but it may be a little chewier than the method with the husk.

Neat butters to make:

Mexican-style

Blend butter, chili powder, fresh lime juice, and cilantro and spread onto roasted corn. Sprinkle with Mexican Cotija cheese (or use Parmesan).

Smoky Lime Butter

Blend butter, fresh lime juice, parsley, smoked paprika, and salt and pepper.

Harissa Butter

Blend butter with Moroccan Harissa sauce, minced chives, garlic salt, smoked paprika, and black pepper.

Sriracha Beer Butter

Blend butter with a little beer, sriracha (or other favourite hot sauce), garlic powder, and salt and pepper. Let chill in the fridge an hour before using.

 

With The Witty Traveller

Steamed Mussels with Tomato-Garlic Broth

Recipe and Photo: Foodandwine.com

Ingredientsmuseels

1/4 cup olive oil
1 onion, chopped fine
6 cloves garlic, minced
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
2 cups drained canned tomatoes in thick puree, chopped (from one 28-ounce can)
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon dried red-pepper flakes
4 pounds mussels, scrubbed and debearded
1/8 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
Salt, if needed

Method

In a large pot, heat the oil over moderately low heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in the parsley, tomatoes, thyme, and red-pepper flakes. Reduce the heat and simmer, partially covered, for 25 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Discard any mussels that have broken shells or that don’t clamp shut when tapped. Add the mussels to the pot. Cover; bring to a boil. Cook, shaking the pot occasionally, just until the mussels open, about 3 minutes. Remove the open mussels. Continue to boil, uncovering the pot as necessary to remove the mussels as soon as their shells open. Discard any that do not open.

Stir the black pepper into the broth. Taste the broth and, if needed, add salt. Ladle the broth over the mussels and serve with the garlic toast.

 

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No fooling around at this brewery!

Posted by David

Tuesday, July 5th, 2016
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We loved the beers produced by Sarnia’s Refined Fool Brewing Co. when we served them last year. With their ever-changing lineup of unique, flavour-driven brews and quirky labels, we felt YOU deserved a second round! More than just a brewery, Refined Fool is making changes to their community and how Sarnia perceives itself. Read on to read all about it! And enjoy these thirst-quenching, crowd-pleasing beers. They’re big on the “Wow” factor!

Open your Savvy Hip Hops & you will find…

…in your Quick Picks a 7 bottle pack containing:hiphops_large-292x300

-Illiterate Librarians: Grapefruit IPA
-Pouch Envy: Australian Pale Ale (2 bottles)
-Noble Oaf: Rye Saison
-The Brouhaha: Nut Brown Ale
-Murder of Crows: Black IPA
-Ripsnorter: Bourbon Porter

…in your Taste Case there’s 10 bottles of:

  • Illiterate Librarians: Grapefruit IPA (2 bottles)
  • Pouch Envy: Australian Pale Ale (2 bottles)
  • Noble Oaf: Rye Saison
  • Short Pier, Long Walk: Double IPA
  • Mid-Life Spices: Braggot
  • The Brouhaha: Nut Brown Ale
  • Murder of Crows: Black IPA
  • Ripsnorter: Bourbon Porter

 

It is summer! Need more beer?

If you would like additional bottles of any beer featured in Savvy Hip Hops, just call our Savvy Brew Crew & we’ll do our best to arrange a special shipment for you.  Put us on speed dial – Savvy Hip Hops Hotline: 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) or cheers@savvycompany.ca

Cheers!

Debbie & the Savvy Brew Crew

Sarnia’s game changer
Refined Fool Brewing Co.

by David Loan, Sommelier & member of the Savvy Brew Crew

 

Can beer save a city?

That idea came up more than once while talking to Refined Fool’s Director Nathan Colquhoun. (in photo below)

The brewery he started with friends – “I was very intrigued with the craft beer movement,” he said – has become a cultural centre and a symbol of change in Ontario’s industrial heartland.

Renaissance man

Born and bred in Sarnia, Nathan is well aware that his hometown doesn’t get a lot of respect from the rest of the province. “I grew tired of watching other young people leave Sarnia,” he said. “I wanted to make this a place people want to be.” Within a short time, Nathan, 31, co-founded a design firm, opened a small church, and joined with friends to open Refined Fool. When asked if he’s Sarnia’s “renaissance man”, he laughs. “I don’t know about that,” he said. “I just wanted to expand on the things I care about.”“Now people see what we’re doing here and they’re getting excited. They want to coRefined brewery dudeme back.”

Starting small

When Nathan and nine of his friends decided to open a brewery in 2013, they had limited experience with brewing. They wanted their beer to reflect a philosophy of “putting people over the product” and they embraced their limited production capacity.

“Being a small brewer gives us the ability to be flexible and creative,” Nathan said. “And it allows us to take the time to build relationships, with our suppliers, our customers, and our community.”

Embracing their roots

Since they opened, the Refined Fool Brewery has become a cultural hub in Sarnia, hosting dinners, concerts, art shows, and other events. They’ve offered a new, young energy to the city. “We stopped worrying about the outside perception of Sarnia,” Nathan said. “Our inside perception is what counts.”

“We all come from blue collar backgrounds and we don’t want to snub our own roots,” he said. “We don’t take ourselves too seriously.” That’s reflected in the brewery’s name – a play on Sarnia’s main product, refined fuels – and in the fun names given to their beers.

The formula must be working, because too-many-to-count times we have had Savvy Hip Hops subscribers request that we feature Refined Fool again.  If you are in southern Ontario, you will find their beers on tap in more than two dozen bars and restaurants; and they’re coordinating with the city to take over a larger space and expand their operations.  Looks like Nathan & his friends are no fools!

Let’s lift a glass to Nathan & the Refined Fool crew!

 

Savvy Hip Hops Tasting Notes

David shares his notes about each beer, along with David’s picks on what to serve… and some fun recipes too!

Illiterate Librarians: Grapefruit IPA

Illiterate Librarians- Grapefruit IPAPerfect for a hot summer day, this IPA does a terrific job of matching dry citrus flavours with a solid hop backbone. It measures up at 5.7% alcohol by volume (ABV) and 70 International Bitterness Units (IBU).

Tasting Notes: Looking like light honey topped with suds, offers aromas of grapefruit pith and brioche. The acidity is medium, but there’s no sweetness here. Instead, it has the pithy dryness of an Earl Grey tea and a soft, light mouthfeel. The alcohol is certainly apparent, especially in the lingering grapefruit aftertaste.

Suggested Food Pairing: The acidity in this beer calls for a rich, fatty meat. We recommend BBQ duck finished with a Peking sauce.

 

Pouch Envy: Australian Pale Ale

Pouch Envy- Australian Pale AleGalaxy™ hops from the land down under have become a staple in the craft beer maker’s kit. They offer citrus and passion fruit notes with moderate bitterness. This is an easy-drinker, at 5% ABV and 20 IBU.

Tasting Notes: A pretty amber beer with a long-lasting mousse, the aromas of lemon-grass and white rose carry through to the palate. It has a silky mouthfeel and moderate acidity. “Eyes-light-up good!” was the note we made.

Suggested Food Pairing: A wonderful match with seafood, we suggest pan-seared sea scallops and garlic butter (recipe below).

 

Noble Oaf: Rye Saison

Noble Oaf- Rye SaisonThe first Noble Fool beer to make become a permanent fixture on the LCBO’s shelves, this heady rye saison is made with traditional Belgian farmhouse yeast. It measures up at 7.3% ABV and 25 IBU.

Tasting Notes: Pouring a caramel colour with a fast-disappearing head, the beer invokes memories of delicatessen rye bread with its roasted and yeasty notes. The bubbles are fine and Champagne-like, and the hoppiness and lively acidity are in perfect harmony. With a long finish, you’ll find sweet hazelnuts remaining on your palate.

Suggested Food Pairing: Serve alongside roast pork tenderloin in a fruit-based sauce, with a side of potatoes and root vegetables. The acidity will balance the sweetness, while the rye notes will complement the meat (recipe below).

Short Pier, Long Walk: Double IPA

Short pier long walkYou’d never know this stunning pale ale boasts 100+ on the IBU scale just from tasting it. With its high (8.4%) alcohol and stunning flavours, those hops are well-integrated.

Tasting Notes: This pours a beautiful orange marmalade colour with a long lasting, well-structured foam. Aromas of beach air, roasted nuts, and caramel lead to a velour-soft mouthfeel. The alcohol comes through, but the bitterness is balanced by the sweet nutty flavours leaving a hint of marmalade on the finish. This is a “Wow” beer to share with friends.

Suggested Food Pairing: Best enjoyed with some sweet and salty beer nuts (recipe below), this big boy can also handle a grilled rib-eye topped with sautéed mushrooms and onions.

Mid-Life Spices: Braggot

Mid-Life Spices- BraggotHere is a neat new beer style that we are eager for you to try.  What is a Braggot beer you ask? Craft beer enthusiasts’ go-to online resource, BeerAdvocate explains that a Braggot beer is “simply made by blending spices and herbs with mead (honey based wine) and beer, to produce a strong concoction with uncommon flavors”. It’s an ancient drink, with literary references going back to the 12th century. But be advised, at 13% ABV, it packs a wallop!

Tasting Notes: Buckwheat honey-coloured and with no foam at all, you can immediately detect the gingerbread aromas while you pour. Tasting of allspice, ginger, and raisins, it’s reminiscent of a Dark & Stormy cocktail. The acidity is tangy, but it measures out at 0 IBU and finishes with lovely spiced honey notes.

Suggested Food Pairing: Caramelized onion tart (recipe below) or a baked brie. The acidity will perfectly balance the richness of the dish.

TIP: if this beer is overwhelming, try making a shanty with gingerale or sprite.  We put a slice of lime & some mint – this definitely turned heads & made people comment “That looks different – what are you drinking?”

 

The Brouhaha: Nut Brown Ale


The Brouhaha- Nut Brown Ale“Yum!” said Debbie. The Brouhaha, made with English-style yeast and hops, has a moderate 5.7% ABV and 23 IBU. We found it complex and very drinkable.

Tasting Notes: With a beautiful pour the colour of pistachio skins and big-bubble foam, this beer had amazed with the changing flavours. It smells like buckwheat honey and root beer, and the palate shifts quickly from hops to nuts to soya sauce. Smooth and rich, this is a winner!

Suggested Food Pairing: There was no hesitation here: pair this beauty with a backyard burger loaded with your favourite toppings.

Murder of Crows: Black IPA

Murder of Crows- Black IPADespite the contradictory name, black IPAs are super-popular with beer makers right now. After all, why shouldn’t dark beers get some hop love? Another big brew, this hits 8% ABV and 90 IBU.

Tasting Notes: With the thick head and blackstrap appearance of good stout, this has surprising notes of black licorice and flint to balance the dark roasted grain. The hops are rich, but the sweet malt and high alcohol offer good balance. If the Noble Oaf was deli rye, this is a grilled cheese on pumpernickel – with bacon jam –  of course!

Suggested Food Pairing: Sacrifice some of this beer to make a fantastic onion soup, topped with croutons and Gruyère.

Ripsnorter: Bourbon Porter

Ripsnorter- Bourbon PorterIf you’ve never considered “dessert beer”, here’s your opportunity. This smooth, rich brew is a perfect alternative to after-dinner liqueurs. Made with whole vanilla beans and bourbon barrel oak. 8.7% ABV and 37 IBU.

Tasting Notes: Chocolate fudge in colour and with a thick foamy top, this superb porter tastes of caramelized brown sugar, sweet cream, espresso, and vanilla. It’s smooth and flavourful, lingering in the mouth like a good coffee liqueur.

Suggested Food Pairing: Chocolate espresso brownie (recipe below) with a dollop of French vanilla ice cream. I’ll take two helpings, please!

 

 

Recipes to enjoy with the featured Savvy Hip Hops

 

With Pouch Envy: Australian Pale Ale

Pan-seared Scallops with Herb Butter Sauce

Recipe and photo: Fine Cooking

IngredientsScallops

1 lb (450 g) dry large sea scallops
1 Tablespoon (15 mL) unsalted butter
1 Tablespoon (15 mL) extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the sauce:

3 Tablespoons (45 mL) unsalted butter, cut into six pieces
2 Tablespoons (30 mL) finely diced shallot (1 medium shallot)
1/4 cup (60 mL) dry white vermouth or dry white wine
1/4 cup (60 mL) finely chopped mixed fresh herbs, such as flat-leaf parsley and chives
1/4 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
Kosher salt and freshly ground black peppeR
2 to 3 lemon wedges for serving

Method

Remove the tough abductor muscle from the side of each scallop (some scallops are sold with the muscle already removed). If you feel any grit on the scallops, rinse them under cold water. Pat the scallops dry with paper towels; surface moisture impedes browning.  

Heat a 10- or 12-inch non-stick skillet over medium-high heat for 1 to 2 minutes. Add the oil and butter, if using, and heat until quite hot. Pat the scallops dry once more and put them in the pan in a single, uncrowded layer. Season with salt and pepper and let sear undisturbed until one side is browned and crisp, 2 to 4 minutes. Using tongs, turn the scallops and sear until the second side is well browned and the scallops are almost firm to the touch, 2 to 4 minutes. Take the pan off the heat, transfer the scallops to a plate, and set them in a warm spot. Let the pan cool for a minute before you make the sauce.

Return the pan to medium heat. Add a piece of the butter (1/2 tablespoon or 12 mL) and the shallots and sauté until the shallots begin to soften, about 1 minute. Add the vermouth or wine and simmer until reduced by about half, another 1 to 2 minutes. Add the herbs and lemon zest. Reduce the heat to low, add the remaining butter, and whisk constantly until the butter melts into the sauce. Return the scallops and any accumulated juices to the pan. Gently roll the scallops in the sauce to warm them through. Taste for salt and pepper and serve immediately with lemon wedges on the side to squeeze over the scallops.

With Noble Oaf: Rye Saison

Pork Tenderloin with Cranberry Cream Sauce

Recipe: A Taste of Québec
Photo credit: Eating Well

IngredientsPork Chops Refined brewery

2  pork fillets (750g)
2 tablespoons (25 mL) all-purpose flour
Salt and ground black pepper
1 tablespoon (15 mL) butter
1 tablespoon (15mL) vegetable oil

For the sauce:

½ cup (125mL) fresh or frozen cranberries
¼ cup (50mL) granulated sugar
1 beef bouillon cube dissolved in 2 tablespoons (25mL) water
1/4 cup (50mL) whipping cream

Method

Lightly dredge pork fillets in flour seasoned with salt and pepper to taste. Heat butter and oil in a large, heavy frying pan; brown pork quickly on all sides.

Place fillets in a shallow baking dish. Roast in a preheated 350°F (180°C) oven for 15 minutes. Turn off heat, cover pork, and leave in oven to keep warm while preparing sauce.

Meanwhile, combine cranberries, sugar, and dissolved bouillon in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and cook until sugar has dissolved. With a slotted spoon, remove cranberries from syrup and set aside.

Bring remaining liquid to a full boil and reduce until thickened, but not caramelized.

Whip cream until stiff; fold into warm sauce along with reserved cranberries. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Cut pork into slices. Arrange on 4 heated plates and pour some of the Cranberry Cream Sauce over each serving.

 

With Mid-life Spices: Braggot

French Onion Tart

Recipe and Photo: Food Network

IngredientsPizza refined brewery

1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed in refrigerator overnight
2 Tablespoons (25 mL) extra-virgin olive oil
3 large Vidalia onions or other sweet variety, thinly sliced
4 thyme sprigs, plus more for garnish
Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
1/3 cup (80 mL) good quality beef stock

Method

Preheat the oven to 400° F (205° C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

On a work surface, roll the puff pastry into a roughly 10 by 16-inch rectangle. With a sharp knife, trim uneven edges to make a perfect rectangle. Evenly cut off the outer 1 inch of each side of the rectangle in strips; put the puff sheet on the baking sheet. Dip your finger in water and run around the top edges of the rectangle and replace the removed strips of pastry along the edges of the sheet, pressing lightly to adhere. With a fork, pierce the interior of the tart shell to prevent rising; do not pierce the adhered edges. Bake until the outer edges have puffed and are golden in colour; about 15 minutes. Set aside.

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add onions and thyme sprigs and season well with salt and pepper, to taste. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions begin to brown. Add the stock, a tablespoon at a time, as the pan gets dry, scraping and stirring the brown bits that are stuck to the bottom of the pan. When the onions are caramelized to a dark golden color, remove from the heat and discard the leafless thyme sprigs (the leaves fall off while cooking).

When ready to serve, preheat the oven to 350° F. Evenly spread the caramelized onions on the cooked pastry shell and heat in the oven until warmed through, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from oven, to a cutting board and cut into wedges. Arrange on a serving platter and garnish each wedge with a sprig of fresh thyme. Serve immediately and enjoy!

 

With Short Pier, Long Walk: Double IPA

Beer Nuts

Recipe and Photo: Food.com

IngredientsBeer Nuts Refined Brewery

4 ½ cups (640 g) peanuts, raw and shelled
2 cups (500 mL) sugar
½ teaspoon (2.5 mL) salt, plus more to taste
1 cup (250 mL) water

Method

Bring peanuts, sugar, salt and water to a boil.

Continue to boil until all liquid is absorbed (approximately 25-30 minutes).

Preheat oven to 300°F (150°C).

Spread nuts on lightly greased jelly roll pan and sprinkle with salt to your liking and.

Bake 20 minutes.

Remove from oven and gently stir, sprinkle with more salt to your liking and bake 20 minutes more.

Cool completely and store in an airtight container.

With Ripsnorter: Bourbon IPA

Chocolate Espresso Brownies

Recipe and Photo: Cookie & Kate

IngredientsCHocoalte

10 Tablespoons (140 g) unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch slices
1¼ cups (312 g) pure cane sugar
¾ cup (187 g) natural unsweetened cocoa powder
½ teaspoon (2.5 mL) fine-grain sea salt
¼ teaspoon (1.25 mL) baking powder
½ teaspoon (2.5 mL) espresso powder or very finely ground coffee (optional)
2 cold large eggs
1½ teaspoons (7.5 mL) vanilla extract
⅔ cup (167 g) white flour
2 ounces (57 g) dark or semi-sweet chocolate, roughly chopped

Method

Preheat the oven to 325°F (165°C) with a rack in the lower third of the oven. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with two criss-crossed pieces of parchment paper, making sure that the paper is long enough to go up the sides a couple of inches. Grease the parchment paper.

Brown the butter: Melt the butter in a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat. Continue to cook the butter, while whisking constantly, until it’s a pale golden brown and the particles suspended in it are reddish brown. This usually takes me about 10 minutes.

Remove the pan from heat and stir in the sugar. Then add the cocoa powder, sea salt, baking powder and espresso powder. Stir until the ingredients are thoroughly incorporated. Let the mixture cool for 5 minutes.

Add the eggs one at a time, beating vigorously with a wooden spoon or silicone spatula after each one. When the mixture looks thick, shiny and well blended, add the vanilla extract and the flour. Stir until you no longer see streaks of flour. Then beat vigorously (put those arm muscles to work!) for 50 strokes with the wooden spoon or spatula.

At this point, the mixture should be no more than slightly warm (if not, let it cool for a few more minutes). Fold in the chocolate chunks or chips.

Spread the batter in the lined pan, then use a knife to make light swirls in the top of the batter. Bake on the lower rack for about 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out almost clean. Cool the brownies in the pan on a baking rack.

Once the brownies are completely cool, lift the edges of the parchment paper and transfer the
brownies to a cutting board. Use a sharp chef’s knife to cut the brownies into 16 or 25 squares. 

 

 

Enjoy your Savvy Hip Hops!

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Baseball & beer team up at Left Field

Posted by Katy

Friday, May 6th, 2016
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Savvy Hip Hops beer of the month club
Featuring Left Field Brewery
–  April 2016 –

 

It’s time to play ball…at the brewery!  Come & see what’s new at Left Field. For me, discovering a new craft brewery is fun – there’s always something that makes their beer stand out from everything else that I have tried.

That’s why I always jump at the chance to visit breweries and going on their tour – there is always something new to learn & see. And to top it all off, I am often struck by the passion the brewers and owners about their beer. Then the war stories come out – always interesting to hear how a brewery has overcome a particular struggle (and every craft brewery has one to share!).

Mark and Mandie Murphy left their careers, went back to school and have taken on new jobs of owning a brewery where they are brewing beer around the clock. Whether you’re a baseball fan or not, you’ll appreciate the thought put behind the names and the flavours behind each beer. Now….let’s play ball!

In this month’s Savvy Hip Hops, you will find:

In Quick Picks & Taste Case…

hiphops_large-292x300Eephus Oatmeal Brown Ale
Maris* Pale Ale
Sunlight Park Saison
Prospect: Galaxy
1st and 3rd Berliner Weisse
Wrigley
a ‘surprise beer’ – just bottled & the jury was still out on the name…

In the Taste Case – ONLY…

Multiples of the beers listed above PLUS an extra special beer:  Anniversary No. 3 

Beer Me! Want more?

Call our Savvy Brew Crew & we’ll do our best to arrange a special shipment for you of some of your favorites.  Savvy Hip Hops Hotline: 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) or cheers@savvycompany.ca

Cheers!
Debbie & the Savvy Brew Crew

 

Introducing…
Left Field Brewery

by Katy Watts, Cicerone & member of the Savvy Brew Crew


Batter Up!

This month marks the 3rd anniversary of Left Field Brewery. The dream started several years earlier in 2010 when Mark Murphy (in photo below) chose to leave his accountant job and attend Niagara College’s Brewmaster and Brewery Operation’s Management Course. While he was pursuing brewing, his wife, Mandie, started a brand management role with Constellation Brands managing their coolers, ciders, spirits and flavoured wine portfolios. When Mark was learning brewing, Mandie was learning how to sell and market alcohol. Now that is teamwork!

Mark MurphyUsing a home-built 25 litre homebrew system modelled after the Sabco Brew Magic, Mark and Mandie researched and tested each recipe before starting production as a contract brewery in 2013. They chose baseball as their theme because they are both BIG fans of the game.

Off the mark, they were a contract brewery using excess production space at Grand River Brewery (featured in Savvy Hip Hops in July 2014) and Barley Day’s (featured last month) to brew their recipes. “We liked the idea of being able to test our brand and our recipes in the market with minimal risk before investing in our own production facility. Having our own brewery was absolutely always the goal,” says Mandie.

Pitcher Goes into the Windup…

Baseball is back signThe search for a home for Left Field Brewery led Mark and Mandie to a location on Wagstaff Drive in Leslieville. “We brewed our first batch one year and four days after taking over the building, which isn’t bad for a construction project of our size,” notes Mandie. The timing couldn’t be more perfect! The photo above is the ‘big empty space’ that they would be transforming.  As the finishing touches were being put on the brewery, the Toronto Blue Jays were just starting the season. Nothing goes better with baseball than beer, especially if you can have it in Left Field’s own baseball themed taproom!

It’s a Grand Slam!

Now that they have a field to play on, Mark, Mandie and their 12 employees can step up to bat for other challenges – like creating new seasonals! That’s why you won’t find Left Field’s flagship beer, Eephus Oatmeal Brown Ale in LCBO’s outside the Toronto-area. “Our goal is to keep making a variety of seasonals and one-offs and expanding Eephus outside of Toronto would prevent us from being able to do that.” Good news though, Sunlight Park Saison is making its debut in the  major leagues (Toronto LCBOs) at the end of May as a summer seasonal.

Here’s to Mark, Mandie & the Left Field Crew!


• Savvy Hip Hops Tasting Notes •

Katy shares her notes about each beer, along with her picks on what to serve … and some fun recipes too!

Eephus Oatmeal Brown Ale

Eephus cansInspired by the Eephus pitch – a low speed, high-arching junk pitch that can catch the batter off-guard. This 5.5% ABV (Alcohol By Volume), 35 IBU (International Bitterness Units).  American Brown Ale is Left Field’s flagship beer and available in Toronto-area LCBO’s. Eephus is Left Field’s only canned offering and is packaged by a mobile canning operation called Sessions Craft Canning.

Tasting Notes: This deep brown ale has a wonderful thick khaki head emitting strong notes of roasted malt, cocoa, caramel and dark fruit. The flavour is somewhat bitter with the roasted malt and coffee, but is rounded out with sweet flavours of nutty caramel and dates. The oatmeal adds a wonderful creamy body that makes it a delight to drink.

Suggested Food Pairing: The roasted/nutty flavours pair perfectly with grilled meat, pulled pork or a bag of roasted peanuts. Serve alongside a cheese plate filled with Gouda, Comte and milder cheddar and blue cheeses.

Maris* Pale Ale

marisIn 1961, Roger Maris made history when he beat Babe Ruth’s 1927 60-homerun record. His style of straight to the point baseball without being flashy or boastful is the inspiration for Maris* Pale Ale. For beer fans, the name Maris has another meaning as this 4.5% ABV, 40 IBU beer is brewed with Maris Otter malt.

Tasting Notes: This beautiful golden ale sports a nice white cap and isn’t afraid to show off its biscuity sweet, pine aroma. The Maris Otter malt provides a solid biscuit, almost nutty base for a medium hop finish of pine and citrus rind.

Suggested Food Pairing: This session-style pale ale is made for sunny days at the ball park! Enjoy a plastic cup of Maris* Pale Ale with hot dogs, nacho’s with liquid cheese or a bready pretzel.

 

Sunlight Park Saison

sunlight parkLeft Field’s spring and summer seasonal is brewed in honour of Toronto’s first professional baseball stadium. Sunlight Park was an all wood structure that could seat 2,250 fans and housed the International League baseball team, the Torontos. This 5.7% ABV, 22 IBU saison is brewed using malted wheat, honey malt and two kilograms of grapefruit zest in every batch.

Tasting Notes: Pours light gold – almost yellow with the cloudiness from the yeast. The aroma is a mixture of sweet with grapefruit, honey and grain and pepper-y yeast spice. There’s a crisp tart, but bitter grapefruit flavour that is balanced by the honey malt and spiced with pepper. Refreshing!

Suggested Food Pairing: Mandie says a favourite pairing at the brewery is sushi with a side of seaweed salad.

 

Prospect Single Hop IPA with Galaxy

prospectLeft Field is seeking out new hop prospects with their single hop India Pale Ale series. Each batch is brewed with the same malt recipe, but showcases a different hop. This 6.1% ABV bottle showcases the Australia Galaxy hop.

Tasting Notes: Be prepared to be transported to a tropical island! There are wonderful aromas of just ripe mango, passionfruit, grapefruit and a caramel background. The flavour is bright with more of those tropical juice notes with a slight hop bitterness that’s similar to grapefruit pith.

Suggested Food Pairing: With the big citrus and tropical notes in this beer I’d tend to go more towards Mexican flavours. Fajitas, fried fish tacos and carne asada con mojo would both compliment the hops and malt bill.

 

Wrigley Oat Pale Ale

wrigleyThis 5.5% ABV, 40 IBU brew shares its name with Left Field’s brewery mascot (in photo left) and of course…Wrigley Field in Chicago. 50 cents from every bottle sold goes to improvements in Wrigley’s local dog park.

Tasting Notes: Pours slightly cloudy with a chunky white head and distinctive aromas of orange and pine hops. Thanks to oats being in the mash there’s more body and a somewhat creaminess to the mouth feel that rounds out the hop flavours, but there’s a distinctive pine bitterness that lingers at the end.

Suggested Food Pairing: The mouthfeel and pine hops would work well with pub favourite appetizers like nachos or zucchini sticks as it’ll help clear and refresh the palate.

 

1st and 3rd Berliner Weisse

1stand3rdThis interpretation of a Berlin favourite is brewed by kettle souring the mash with a strain of lactobacillus and fermenting using a blend of Belgian and American yeast. Traditionally this 4% ABV tart ale would be served with the option to add a fruit or herbal (woodruff) syrup, but it’s a nice treat on its own.

Tasting Notes: Pours with a beautiful chunky white head and a wheat-y aroma with a subtle tart-funk at the end. There is very little (if any) hop aroma or taste, but the wheat-heavy grain bill and slight citrus tart zing makes this beer very refreshing without being overpowering.

Suggested Food Pairing: Go for the ultimate combination of salt and sour with a bag of your favourite french fries. 1st and 3rd will not only be a great contrast, but cut the fat from the fries (and optional mayonnaise).

 

Anniversary No. 3 (in Taste Case only)

Anniversary_No_3As we mentioned earlier, Left Field is celebrating their 3rd anniversary and what better way to celebrate it than with a special beer? This 7.6% ABV special saison is brewed with French saison yeast and dry hopped with New Zealand Nelson Sauvin hops.

Tasting Notes: With the dry hopping of Nelson Sauvin hops this saison is turned into a Belgian IPA of sorts. The aroma is all hop with an almost white wine character, boarding on being ‘catty’ while the pepper yeast is almost an afterthought. The flavour is similar to a fruit salad with a subtle alcohol note with the peppery yeast showing more strength in the finish.

Suggested Food Pairing: Left Field suggests a fish and chip pairing, but I’d also go with steamed mussels served with thick pieces of baguette.

 

Recipes to enjoy with the featured Savvy Hip Hops•

 

With Eephus Oatmeal Brown Ale

Pulled Pork Nachos

Recipe and Photo: French’s

Ingredients

Recipe pulled pork nachos2 lbs boneless pork butt or shoulder
2 cups Eephus Oatmeal Brown Ale
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup mustard
1/4 cup molasses (or honey)
1 tsp cinnamon
1 Tbsp kosher salt
1 tsp pepper
½ tsp garlic powder
¼ tsp cayenne peppe
8 oz tortilla chips
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
¾ cup corn
¾ cup black beans
¼ cup jalapenos
¼ cup sliced red onions

Method

Place pork butt in the bottom of a slow cooker. In a large bowl combine and mix Eephus Oatmeal

Brown Ale, brown sugar, mustard, molasses, cinnamon, salt, pepper, garlic powder and cayenne. Pour mixture over pork butt. Set slow cooker to Low setting for 8 hours. When pork is cooled, shred the meat into bite-sized pieces using two forks. Set aside.

Heat oven to 350°F. Lightly cover baking sheet with non-stick spray. Place half of the chips, pulled pork, corn, black beans, jalapenos, onions and cheese. Repeat with remaining ingredients for an additional layer. Bake until cheese melts, about 20-25 minutes.

 

With Sunlight Park Saison

Grapefruit Saison Sour Cream Ice Cream

Recipe grrapefruit sour cream ice creamRecipe and Photo: The Beeroness

Ingredients

1 cup sour cream
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup sugar
½ tsp salt
¾ cup Sunlight Park Saison
2 Tbsp cornstarch
3 Tbsp fresh grapefruit juice grapefruit zest

Method

Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

Churn in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s specifications until soft serve consistency (about 15 minutes).

Pour into an airtight container, freeze until set (about 2 hours).

 

With Wrigley Oat Pale Ale

Beer Cheese Dip

Recipe and Photo: Betty Crocker

Ingredients

Recipe beer cheese dip8 oz cream cheese, softened
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
½  cup shredded Gouda cheese
½ cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
½ cup Wrigley Oat Pale Ale
1 tsp honey mustard
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper

Method

Heat all ingredients in a 2-quart saucepan over low heat, stirring frequently, until cheese melts and mixture is smooth. Spring with red pepper and green onions and serve with chips.

 

Enjoy your Savvy Hip Hops!

 

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Pour a Barley Days Brew!

Posted by Katy

Tuesday, March 29th, 2016
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Savvy Hip Hops

Savvy Hip Hops beer of the month club
Featuring Barley Day’s Brewery
–  March 2016 –

 

Prince Edward County is Ontario’s little secret. If you’ve never been, you’re missing out on an area filled with abundance – wine, cider, cheese, beer and so much more. It’s easy to be overwhelmed by the amount of flavour available in one area and it’s hard to explore in just one trip. Since I was first introduced to the area, I’ve been back several times for weekends or day trips to explore new favourite spots. No matter how many places I visit, the one I always return to is Barley Day’s Brewery.

While Barley Day’s may be the only brewery among the wineries, it celebrates the region and the terroir like no other! Through the use of local apples, hops, cherries or wine barrels – Barley Day’s is proud to show off Prince Edward County. And if you’re ever in the region, be sure to stop by the brewery for a tour – it’ll make you excited about beer and The County.

In this month’s Savvy Hip Hops, you will find:

…in your Quick Pickshiphops_large-292x300

Cherry Porter
Scrimshaw Oyster Stout
County IPA
Sugar Shack Ale
Snakebite Apple Ale
Royal George Brown Ale

…in your Taste Case

Cherry Porter
Scrimshaw Oyster Stout
County IPA
Snakebite Ale
Royal George Brown Ale
Loyalist Lager
County Light
Harvest Gold Pale Ale
Wind & Sail Dark Ale
Ursa Minor Black Lager
Ursa Major Black IPA

Need more beer? 

If you would like additional bottles of any beer featured in Savvy Hip Hops, just call our Savvy Brew Crew & we’ll do our best to arrange a special shipment for you.  Put us on speed dial – Savvy Hip Hops Hotline: 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) or cheers@savvycompany.ca

Cheers!
Debbie & the Savvy Brew Crew

 

Introducing…
Barley Days Brewery

by Katy Watts, Cicerone & member of the Savvy Brew Crew

The Past…
Glenora Springs Brewery

Barley Day’s Brewery first opened their doors as Glenora Springs Brewery in 2000 (photo – right). Seven years later they picked up and moved to Picton and changed the name to reflect a time in Prince Edward County – when the region was renowned for the quality of barley and hops grown in the area.

Regardless of the brewery’s name change, the core beer line up stayed the same, with some tweaks to some of the name changes: Red Coat Pale Ale became ‘Harvest Gold’, Triple Chin Irish Ale became’ Wind & Sale Dark Ale’ and the beer previously named Black Scarf Cherry Porter became the new ‘Yuletide’.

To reinforce a heritage connection with their beer, Barley Days 341mL bottles also featured vintage artwork by local artists Peter Rindlisbacher and Manly MacDonald.

The Present…

Barley Days BrettWith their move to Prince Edward County, Barley Day’s has the benefit of being one of the few breweries surrounded by wine country. When I asked Head Brewer Brett French (photo left) how it felt to be in the middle of rapidly growing wine region, he said, “It’s exciting! I especially like seeing people’s reactions to having a beer during a weekend wine tour. A lot of the folks are pretty thirsty after tasting wine all day and having beer in the mix is a great addition to the wide variety of food and drink that The County offers.”

In addition to their core lineup, Barley Day’s has added several additional brews to their lineup to showcase the flavour of The County and satisfy the demand for craft beer. Beer’s like Snake Bite, Sugar Shack, Scrimshaw Oyster Stout showcase what beer is. As Brett says, “Every winemaker here will tell you that it takes a lot of beer to make good wine.”

Looking into the Future…

Barley Days BreweryBarley Day’s recently changed ownership and changes were made immediately to expand many facets of this brewery & the products too.  For the first time since the brewery opened in 2007, they recently changed their labels and packaging. What do you think? While the look has been updated, the core beers are still packaged in 341mL bottles while special seasonals are now packaged in a fancy 500mL with a cork & cage treatment.

There have been renos to the brewery as well as a new patio where a local food truck will park & serve up a menu full of beer & food pairings.

Brett also hinted that three additional summer seasonals are planned.  And if that were not enough, other collaborations with new County breweries are in the works. “We want to make PEC (Prince Edward County) a wine AND beer region. If our map can be filled with 40+ wineries, why not have as many breweries as we can fit?” says Brett. “Until then the Barley Day’s team will continue to do what we do – make easy drinking, sessionable, accessible beers using quality ingredients that we’re proud of.”

Here’s to Brett & the crew at Barley Day’s Brewery!

• Savvy Hip Hops Tasting Notes •

Barley Days range of beers

Katy shares her notes about each beer, along with her picks on what to serve … and some fun recipes too!

Cherry Porter

Previously known as Yuletide Cherry Porter, this 5.5% alcohol by volume porter (ABV) is brewed with Ontario cherries in the mash. How cool is that?

Tasting Notes: Resembling cherry cola when poured, this beer has some wonderful complexity to it. The flavour starts with a dark coffee roast that gives way to cocoa and notes of plum, raisin and cherry. However, you’ll notice the cherry most on the finish, adding a slight tartness to balance the bitter.

Suggested Food Pairing: This beer will pair alongside dessert like a good cup of coffee! Indulge in cherry cheesecake, a big slice of chocolate cake or a few pieces of quality chocolate.

Barley Days Brett with OystersScrimshaw Oyster Stout

This 4% ABV dry Irish stout is brewed with Green Gables Malpeque Oysters from Prince Edward ISLAND.  According to Brett (in selfie), “We have 1500 PEI malpeques ready to go into the boil… but to be truthful (ahem), I would say only about 1450 actually make it into the boil.”

Tasting Notes: Pouring with little head (possibly due to the addition of oysters), Scrimshaw starts like any other dry Irish stout – roast, cocoa, maybe a little char to round it out. It’s at the finish where the flavour of the Malpeque Oysters shines – a good amount of brininess and a slight minerality from the shell.

Suggested Food Pairing: Oysters of course!

County IPABarley Days pint

This 5.5% ABV India Pale Ale is brewed with a blend of hops, including some sourced from Prince Edward County!

Tasting Notes: Starts malty with sweet caramel, biscuit and grain flavours leading to orange and earthy hops. I’d call this more of an English-style IPA with more of a subdued hop profile and low bitterness.

Suggested Food Pairing: Go with a big spicy Indian curry like chicken madras or vindaloo. The malt profile of County IPA will help cool your pallet and cut through some of that spice.

Royal George Brown Ale

This 5.1% ABV ale is named after the H.M.S. Royal George, the largest warship on Lake Ontario and is a showcase of malt flavour.

Tasting Notes: Malt lovers rejoice! Royal George starts with a slight nutty malt flavour that slips into sweet caramel, brown sugar, chocolate and a touch of roast. Hops take a backseat, offering a slight earthy bitterness at the end.

Suggested Food Pairing: Brown ales are a perfect pairing for a cheese plate. Fill your plate with aged Gouda, Comte, mild cheddar and blue cheese.

Barley Days tapsSnakebite Ale

Named after the combination of lager and cider, this 5.5% ABV beer is brewed with real Ontario apple juice pressed at the brewery.

I asked head brewer Brett how they make this beer, “We grow a ton of different apples from here in The County.  We spend a day pressing and collecting the juice, then, use that fresh apple juice as a portion of the brew water. The grain bill has a bit of caramel malts and only a slight hop addition to balance it all out. The thing I like about the beer is that it’s real apple juice. You can actually taste the tartness and slight sourness of the apples.”

Tasting Notes: Take a moment and smell this beer – does it remind you of a caramel apple from a country fair? While it may smell like caramel there is little caramel flavour in this beer. Instead, we’re treated to simple ale with flavours of grain and biscuit that’s spiked with tart apple.

Suggested Food Pairing: This would work perfectly with a home cooked pork chop or roasted chicken dinner with a side of butternut squash.

Loyalist Lager

No need to stay loyal to the Crown to enjoy this lager! Brewed in the Czech Pilsner style with Saaz hops, this 4.5% ABV beer is easy to drink no matter who your allegiance is to.

Tasting Notes: Starts slightly sweet with some caramel, grain and cereal notes, but with a slight earthy/spice hop flavour. There’s a nice balance between the hops and malt which makes this light bodied lager crisp and easy to drink.

Suggested Food Pairing: Serve alongside grilled pork or chicken and light seafood.

County LightBarley Days equipment

This beer has an interesting label! Don’t be fooled though, while it is lighter than Barley Day’s typical offerings it still has more flavour.

Tasting Notes: Crisp with a slightly sweet grainy malt sweetness and faint earthy hop flavour. County Light is fairly light bodied and at 4% ABV it’s a good beer to take on a camping trip (perhaps Sandbanks?).

Suggested Food Pairing: This style offers a delicate flavour, but high carbonation. I would pair it with deep fried or fatty foods to help keep the palate refreshed. Go ahead, I’m giving you permission to order onion rings.

Harvest Gold Pale Ale

This 4.8% ABV Pale Ale is brewed with Fuggles and Golding hops and best enjoyed after a long day in the field.

Tasting Notes: Slightly sweet with a biscuit and grain note leading to an earthy, almost mineral, hop bitterness. The carbonation is crisp and the finish leans more towards a slight bitterness.

Suggested Food Pairing: The earthy hops and crisp carbonation will pair wonderfully with fish and chips or a sticky bread budding.

Wind & Sail Dark Ale

This 5% ABV Dark Ale is a nice balance of malt and hops. The deep colour and white head wisps makes me think of a boat weather a dark storm.

Tasting Notes: This ale has a wonderful nutty grain malt base with notes of dark chocolate, slight roast and dark fruits. The sweetness is restrained by an underlying earthy, almost spicy, hop.

Suggested Food Pairing: The malt in this would pair well with roasted meat, charred greens and a flourless chocolate cake for dessert!

Barley Days equipment2Ursa Minor Black Lager

Also known as a Schwarzbier, ‘Little Bear’ boasts big flavour and shrugs off that assumption that lagers are void of flavour.

Tasting Notes: Starts off with a good amount of roasted malt with a slight caramel sweetness. Earthy/pine hops are there in a supporting role, adding a slight balance without overwhelming the flavour. Finishes dry.

Suggested Food Pairing: The mild roast or burnt flavours go well with grilled meats like salmon or pork chops. Don’t be afraid to try some dark chocolate alongside it though!

Ursa Major Black IPA

Also known as a Cascadian Dark Ale, Black IPAs showcase a good amount of roast with a bitter addition of hops. With a nod to the ‘Great Bear’ constellation, Ursa Major, pouring 5.3% ABV, doesn’t disappoint.

Tasting Notes: Big amounts of roast jump out of the bottle when opened and it blasts onto your palate at first sip. Hidden in that roast is a caramel undertone that meets with a sharp citrus and somewhat resin-y hop. The finish is quite bitter with both the roast and hops leaping onto your palate at once with no trace of balance.

Suggested Food Pairing: Now is a good time to haul out the BBQ and grill a steak to perfection, maybe even add a skewer of shrimp to make it surf and turf.

 

• Recipes to enjoy with the featured Savvy Hip Hops •

 

With Harvest Gold Pale Ale

Ale Poached Shrimp

Barley Day’s Kitchen

IngredientsBarley Days Shrimp

2 12 oz bottles of Harvest Gold Pale Ale
2 garlic cloves, sliced
2 bay leaves
3 sprigs parsley
1 Tbsp chili powder
1 tsp kosher salt
1lb large tiger shrimp

Method

In a large pot, combine all the ingredients except shrimp.

Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes to combine the flavours.  Add shrimp and poach for 2 to 3 minutes or until shrimp is pink and firm.

 

With Royal George Brown Ale

Beer Braised Beef with Caramelized Onion & Blue Cheese

Barley Day’s Kitchen

IngredientsBarley Days Shortrib with Blue Cheese

½ cup diced double smoked bacon
3 tbsp unsalted butter
3 medium onions, thinly sliced
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
2 lbs beef stewing meat, cut in 1 ½ inch cubes
Vegetable oil for frying
1 12 oz bottle Royal George Brown Ale
2 whole sprigs fresh thyme
2 sprigs fresh parsley
4 cups beef or chicken stock
2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 cup blue cheese, crumbled

Method

In a heavy skillet over medium-high heat, cook the bacon until slightly crisp and fat is rendered. Add the butter and onions to the pan and lower heat. Cook onions slowly, stirring occasionally until caramelized, about 20-30 minutes. Season onions with salt and pepper and set aside.

In another heavy bottomed pot, sear the beef in a little oil to a nice brown colour. Sprinkle beef with flour and stir. Add the beer and scrape up any bits from the bottom of the pot. Add the onions to the beef and be sure to scrape all the bits from the onion pan. Season the beef with salt and pepper to taste. Add the fresh herbs and stock and simmer for 1 ½ hours over low heat until the beef is tender, stirring occasionally. Add the vinegar and taste to see if you need more salt and pepper.

Serve with blue cheese sprinkled on top.

 

With Wind & Sail Dark Ale

Wind & Sail Dark Ale Ginger Christmas Truffles

Chef Lili Sullivan Claramount Inn & Spa

Ingredients

¾ cup ginger cookies, crushed
2 Tbsp finely chopped glace pineapple
2 Tbsp finely chopped hazelnuts
2 Tbsp ground almonds
2 Tbsp finely chopped citrus peel
2 Tbsp dried cherries
2 Tbsp finely chopped candied ginger
1 Tbsp Barley Days Wind & Sail Dark Ale
1 teaspoon vanilla
¼ cup butter, cubed
6 oz dark chocolate, chopped
2 Tbsp whipping cream (35%)
¾ cup finely chopped hazelnuts – for coating

Method

In a medium bowl, mix cookies, nuts, dried fruit, ale, and vanilla.

Melt butter in a small bowl over simmering water with chocolate, stirring until almost melted, remove from heat and finish melting by stirring. Whisk in cream, stir into cookie and fruit mixture. Refrigerate until firm.

Roll mixture into 40 balls. To coat, roll balls in nuts. Refrigerate in a covered container with waxed paper between layers up to 2 weeks. To serve, place in small paper or foil cups.

Chocolate mixture can be frozen after rolling into balls and then coated when removed from freezer.

 

With Cherry Porter

Chocolate Cherry Porter Cheesecakes

Barley Day’s Kitchen

IngredientsBarley Days Cherry Porter recipe

1 ¼ cups chocolate wafer crumbs
1/3 cup melted butter
½ cup sour cream
1 Tbsp corn starch
¾ cup granulated sugar
1 ½ lbs softened cream cheese
½ cup Cherry Porter
2 eggs
¾ cup semi-sweet chocolate, melted

Method

Preheat oven to 350’F. Butter or spray a 10-inch spring form pan and line the bottom with parchment paper. In a small bowl toss the crumbs with melted butter and press the mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan.  Set aside.

To make the filling, stir together sour cream, cornstarch and sugar in a bowl.  Set aside. In a large bowl with an electric mixer, whisk together cream cheese, porter and eggs until very well combined.  Gently mix the sour cream mixture into the cream cheese mixture.  Fold in melted chocolate and stir through to streak the mixture and make it look marbled.Pour the batter into the prepared pan and tap on counter to release any air.

Bake for 45 minutes to an hour, until the middle has set and the sides are slightly puffy. Chill completely before slicing.

Enjoy your Savvy Hip Hops!

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Celebrate FeBREWary with Beau’s

Posted by Monique

Friday, February 26th, 2016
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Savvy Hip Hops

Savvy Hip Hops beer of the month club
Featuring Beau’s All Natural Brewing
–  February 2016 –

 

Welcome to another delicious month of Savvy Hip Hops showcasing Beau’s All Natural Brewing from Vankleek Hill. Beau’s is no stranger to us as we kicked off Savvy Hip Hops 3 years ago with an assortment of Beau’s beers for our very first Savvy Hip Hops Taste case. Since then, we have slated Beau’s in for this month because it is a great way for you to get their extra special FeBREWary beers.

febrewary-labelsThroughout the month Beau’s has been releasing new unique brews in limited quantities for us to enjoy.  This year their feBREWary celebrations began with the release of the Tyrannosaurus Gruit Ale, commemorating International Gruit Day on February 1st.  Then the month long specialty beer release rolls out with a new feBREWary beer kicking off each weekend. All the while busloads of craft beer lovers visit the brewery and 200 plus pubs and restaurants are participating in serving feBREWery beers and hosting special events. It is an understatement to say that – Beau’s is busy!

In this month’s Savvy Hip Hops Taste Case, you will find these beers…

…in your Quick Picks:

  • hiphops_large-292x300Le Coeur Noir Black IPA
  • Tyrannosaurus Gruit
  • Farm Table: Grisette
  • Embittermint IPA
  • Farm Table: Pils

…in your Taste Case:

  • Le Coeur Noir Black IPA
  • Tyrannosaurus Gruit
  • Farm Table: Grisette
  • Embittermint IPA
  • Farm Table: Pils
  • Le Coeur Noir
  • Farm Table: Grisette
  • Elelphant Monsoon
  • Patio Saison
  • Fous Allies Mango Saison
  • Screamin’ Beaver Oak Aged Double IPA
  • Koru
  • The Tom Green Beer
  • Lug Tread– Beau’s signature beer

Need more beer?

If you would like additional bottles of any beer featured in Savvy Hip Hops, just call our Savvy Brew Crew & we’ll arrange a special shipment for you. Put us on speed dial 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) or email is on cheers@savvycompany.ca
Crack open a Beau’s & raise a glass to feBREWary!

Debbie & the Savvy Brew Crew

 

Introducing…
Beau’s All Natural Brewing Company

by Monique Sosa, Sommelier & member of the Savvy Brew Crew

 

Steve-Bruce_largeIn the past editions of our Beer Backstory, we have interviewed owner & founder Steve Beauchesne (left in photo). This time, we are switching it up in this issue by interviewing the resident chef…yes, Beau’s has a full time chef on staff! And we are not talking about someone working in a cafeteria whipping up lunches for everyone at the brewery….far from it! A year and a half ago, “The Locavore Chef” Bruce Wood (right in photo) joined the brewery team to work closely with Beau’s brewmaster Matthew O’Hara with the focus to join the dots between Beau’s certified organic craft beer and dishes made with seasonal ingredients. “It is a dream job”, glows Chef Bruce.

Do you ‘Farm to table’

Bruce is a great guy, and also a true pioneer of the farm-to-table movement – he’s been advocating for local and sustainable food for years,” said Steve Beauchesne in a news release for Ottawa Wine & Food Festival. “We are super-excited to have him join the Beau’s team, and also about all the cool things we can do now with his knowledge and skill to draw on.”

Bruce explained to me that he remembers savouring a spicy bowl of authentic Jamaican curry when he was 17, “each spoonful made me see the world in colour.”

With that ah-ha moment, he became a classically trained chef and has worked for over 35 years for various gourmet business including owning his own restaurant on Salt Spring Island, British Columbia. He comes from a wine and food pairing background, but started a love affair with pairings beer and food that has kindled an eternal romance.

Start with a dish, it’s easy after that

He explained that his inspirations begin with the dish itself. Then the dam breaks and ideas for beer pairings flow.  If beer and food cooking/pairing is out of the ordinary for you, then Chef Bruce has this tip to share: “start by pairing assertive with assertive then the light with light.” He further explains, “This means match a dish to the style of the beer rather than the colour or weight of the beer.” With this good rule of thumb, you are heading in a good direction.

Chef Bruce also has no problem admitting to cooking with beer but added a surprising fact that cooking with malts – the same ones used to brew the beer – is an excellent ingredient as well.  He has made many scrumptious roasts with the meats being brined in beer and/or seasoned with a malt rub.

Chef Bruce & Beer

Bruce-in-action1-600x295 (1)Favourite style of beer?  Chef Bruce loves Belgian Ales and Porters – for drinking and cooking of course!  He admits that he enjoys all styles really but will occasionally skip over the big hoppy beers. Speaking of which, Chef Bruce tipped me off that that creamy based dishes tames overly hoppy beers. His example of coconut yellow lentil daal with Formidable beer makes my mouth water! 

Made beer yet? “No. That it is something that I look forward do to sometime soon. As an honoured member of the Beau’s family, we are all encouraged to participate in an annual friendly brewmaster challenge.”  Teams craft a beer and the winner is unveiled at Beaus’s annual OktoberFest(save the dates Sept 23 & 24, 2016).  Some of these beers brewed at past challenges have even inspired new and innovative brews like Gruit style ales and the Coeur Noir Black IPA – try them out in your Taste Case.

Going flat out til St Paddy’s Day!

Beaus St Paddys Day party logoWhile Oktoberfest is Beau’s signature festival, this year they are hosting the 1st ever Beau’s St Patrick’s Party on March 19th at Lansdowne’s Cattle Castle in Ottawa. Chef Bruce will be working around the clock for this special event –cooking up everything on the Irish inspired menu he created!

See you there with a pint of Beau’s in hand!

 

•Savvy Hip Hops Tasting Notes •

 

Monique shares her notes about each beer, along with her picks on what to serve. For those feBREWary beers that were not released yet, we have included the brewmasters notes.

Tyrannosaurus Gruit

Beaus Tyrannosaurus GruitSince 2013, craft brewers with an interest in making gruit ales have banded together to mark February 1 as International #GruitDay. The day is intended to raise awareness of, and pay homage to, the historical traditions of brewing with botanicals.  This is the gruit that kicked off this year’s feBREWary.

This 5.8% abv beer is brewed in the Gruitstyle where ingredients are used that are not stated in the Bavarian Rienhietsgebot Purity Law of water, malt and hops.  In this beer, ingredients are beets and hibiscus flower – boy does it ever come through!

Tasting Note: This beer pours with a brilliant raspberry red hue  showing notes of beets, cranberry and hibiscus tea on the nose.  The palate is crisp, mouthwatering and light bodied with a creamy texture and medium-short finish.

Food Pairing: Enjoy with turkey dinner, roasted beets and – for something different – rhubarb-strawberry tart.

 

Farm Table: Grisette Belgian Ale

Grisette-Glass-and-Bottle-1-300x300Farm Table Series are sessionable beers inspired by tradition and brewed true to a classic style. This GrisetteBelgian Ale is a sessional style ale with 4.9% abv. It is an easy drinking hazy pale gold beer with mild characteristics.

Tasting Note: Here we have a mouthwatering light Belgian style ale with notes of white citrus blossom, candied lemon peel and coriander. The palate shows a pithy finish with balanced malts and hops.  

Food Pairing suggestions: Enjoy this light bodied easy drinking with green salads (try it with arugula salads) and sushi rolls. 

 

Farm Table: Pils

Beaus Farm Table PilsThis feBREWary beer was recently released on Feb 18 and we did not have a sample to taste, so here are the brewmaster notes:

Pilsners are pale lagers named for the city of Pilsen in the Czech Republic, where the style originates. Farm Table: Pils (North-German Style) is a traditional Pilsner with the regional characteristics of those brewed in the northern part of Germany. This beer is 4.9% abv and is less mellow or “soft” than some Pils; delivers a pleasantly snappy, bracing hop character with each sip.

Brewmaster’sNotes: A pale straw colour, with great clarity and a billowy white head. The aroma is herbal and hoppy with some grainy, malty notes. A refreshing hop bite dominates the flavour which is counterbalanced by clean malt sweetness. The finish is quick and dry.

Food Pairing suggestions:Fried calamari; grilled fresh sardines; spicy sausage (chorizo or andouille); prosciutto; melted brie & sharp apple on grilled artisan bread; young gouda or havarti cheeses.

Fous Alliés Mango Saison

fous-allies-web-300x300The Crazy Allies, as it translates to, is a 6.1% abv mango infused Saison.  It is a classic easy drinking food friendly ale originating from the Wallonia region in Belgium.

Tasting Notes: This beer pours with a bright golden hue and pronounced notes of ripe mango puree, citrus blossoms, apricot and wild flower honey.  The palate shows a long finish with key notes of lemon peel and pink grapefruit. It is crisp and refreshing with well integrated hop notes.

Suggested Food Pairing: Enjoy with chicken or beef stir fry, Pad Thai or, my favourite, taco salad!

 

Patio Saison

Beaus Patio SaisonThe name says it all! Pair with a patio, even if it is not quite patio weather. Crafted in the tradition Belgian style of Saisons, this 5.9% abv beer is a crisp refreshing summer sipper that’s for sure!

Tasting Notes: Pronounced aromas of lemon grass, walnut husk, apricot and oatmeal billow from the pint.  My first though was that it seems quite strong for a Saison but the alcohol is well integrated.  The palate is light bodied with creamy mouthfeel and short to medium finish.

Suggested Food Pairing: Enjoy this mouthwatering beer with spicy chicken or shrimp wontons, seafood ceviche or anything bacon based!

 

Embittermint

embittermint-1024x1024This feBREWary beer was not available a sample to taste, so here are the brewmaster notes:

An I.P.A. at 6.7% abv that blends and balances the more delicate and floral characteristics of select hops and mints.Brewed with organic lemon balm, spearmint and peppermint.

A boat-load of extra hops (a natural preservative) made India Pale Ales (I.P.A.s) historically better suited for long voyages when shipping to British soldiers stationed afar, including India. Their distinct taste caught on, and now these ales are widely known and enjoyed for their aggressively hopped aromas and flavours.

Brewmaster’s Notes: pours a hazy yellow with white foam. The aroma is a combination of orangey citrus and muddled mint (think mortar and pestle and mojito). This beer is medium-bodied with an explosion of julep-y orange flavour that is offset by cool mint. The finish is long lasting and refreshing.

Suggested Food Pairings: Roast leg of lamb with mint sauce; chicken tikka masala with minted raita; pasta tossed with cheese curds, cream & mint & basil pesto; grilled New York steak with paloise sauce (minted Béarnaise); aged gouda cheese or raw milk 3-year-old cheddar.

 

Koru

koruThis feBREWary beer was not available a sample to taste, so here are Beau’s brewmaster notes:

Belgian-Style Pale Ale measuring in at 6% abv, boasts interesting spicy, peppery yeast notes, with tropical fruit inflections from New Zealand nelson sauvin and rakau hops. Complex and tasty, with a dry finish. More sessionable than bigger Belgian styles, the Belgian Pale Ale came to prominence in the mid-20th century. A balanced fruity and floral hop character is complemented by the peppery, spicy notes of Belgian yeast. Beau’s first created Koru in 2012 for our annual Vankleek Hill Oktoberfest celebration.

Brewmaster’s Notes: Koru pours deep gold with white frothy foam. The aroma combines tropical fruit with citrusy notes such as candied orange. Koru is medium-bodied and the flavours are peppery and fruity suggesting mango, papaya, pineapple and grapefruit. The finish offers lingering spice.

Suggested Food Pairings: Chicken schnitzel with mango & papaya salsa; avocado, lime, red onion & shrimp salad; grilled peaches wrapped in prosciutto; Burrata or fresh buffalo mozzarella cheese.

 

Le Coeur Noir

label-lecoeurnoir-1024x1024This beer is the 11th in Beau’s Pro-Am Series which features beers that are designed by amateur brewers, and brewed at Beau’s. Le Coeur Noir Black IPA was brewed in collaboration with the winner of the 2013 Toronto Beer Week Homebrew Contest, Jordan Rainhard.

This 7.1% abv beer is one of Beau’s cutting styles, an American Black IPA.

Tasting Notes: This beer pours with an opaque brown hue and shows pronounced notes of black molasses, spruce tips, cacao nibs, roasted malt and touch of grapefruit rind.  The mouthfeel is rich and full bodied with a long grapefruit pith finish.

Suggested Food Pairing: Try pairing this with gorgonzola gnocchi, braised short rib with crumbled blue cheese or a simple bison-blue cheese burger.  Blue cheese is an incredible example of pairing an assertive style of beer with an assertive style of food.

 

Screamin’ Beaver

label-screamin-beaver-1024x1024Here we have a strong 9.9% abv oak aged double IPA for our pleasure. This beer might sound intimidating but it carries a well-balanced malt and hop structure.  It is a sneakily easy drinking, given the alcohol, and it’s delicious!

Tasting Notes: The aromas are pronounced with complex notes.  It starts out with a strong honey, apricot and marzipan note, and later reveals layers of caramel, spearmint and spruce tips. The palate then shows a distinct maple syrup sweetness, orange peel and pink grapefruit.  The finish is long with a persistence of hoppy bitterness balanced by a sweet butterscotch-caramel note.

Suggested Food Pairing: Given it’s complexity, I still found this beer quite food friendly. Enjoy with Thai Spring Rolls and don’t hold back on the siracha hot sauce.  Also try pairing with Jambalaya, shrink creole or blackened salmon.

 

Elephant Monsoon Porter

Beaus Elephant MonsoonThis feBREWary beer was recently just released today (February 25th) and we did not have a sample to taste, so here are the brewmaster notes:

At 6.7% abv, a delicious duo meets a classic British beer style in what we are calling a “PB & grape” porter. The nicely roasted malt character of a porter ale gets a fun, flavourful twist with the addition of organic peanut butter and concord grape juice.

A roasty brown ale with hundreds of years of history behind it, porter beer originated in London and was very popular in the 18th and 19th centuries. PB & grape is a sandwich, popular in North America, made with a layer of peanut butter & grape jelly between two slices of bread… or one slice, folded over, if you prefer.

Brewmaster’s Notes: Elephant Monsoon pours a nearly opaque brown/black with a tan head. The aroma is a medley of mocha, grape and peanut notes. The flavour features sweet grapey fruitiness followed by dark chocolate and peanuts. The finish is dry… with lingering nuts.

Suggested Food Pairings: Peanut butter pie with Oreo crust; “Elvis Presley” grilled sandwich (peanut butter, mashed banana & crisp bacon); Asian-spiced chicken meatballs with spicy peanut sauce.

 

 • Recipes enjoy with your Savvy Hip Hops •

from Chef Bruce of Beau’s


With Beau’s Coeur Noir Black IPA…

Squash Gnocchi with Blue Cheese, Apple and Sage

Recipe & photo from Beau’s Chef Bruce
Serves: 6

The trick to good, light gnocchi is the type of potato. A baking or russet potato will give you the texture you need to make a soft, tender dumpling.

IMG_2421-300x300Ingredients

1 lb russet potatoes
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
Sea salt
4 eggs
1 C roast squash purée
3-4 C all-purpose flour
Cornmeal (enough to dust tray)
3 Tbsp unsalted butter
8 fresh sage leaves
1 apple, cut in 1/4 ” dice
4 oz blue cheese (such as Glengarry Celtic), crumbled

 Method

Preheat the oven to 400 F. Rub the potatoes with a little vegetable oil and salt and place them on a baking sheet. Bake the potatoes for one hour, or until fork tender. When the potatoes have cooled, peel them and pass them through a food mill (or grate them).

Place the potatoes in a bowl and add the eggs, squash and a pinch of salt. Add 2 C of the flour and mix to combine; the mixture will probably be fairly sticky. Turn out on to a well-floured surface and liberally dust with flour. Knead the dough, adding more flour as it becomes sticky. When the dough is a cohesive ball and is no longer sticky, place it in a bowl, cover with saran wrap and let rest for 30 minutes.

Divide the gnocchi dough into golf-ball-sized pieces. Using your fingertips roll the dough into a long(ish) rope shape about ½” around. Cut the dough into one inch lengths and place on a cornmeal-dusted baking sheet. Continue with the remaining dough until you have a tray full of gnocchi. Place the tray in the freezer and freeze for 30 minutes.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Drop the frozen gnocchi intothe boiling water. Cook for 3-4 minutes or until tender, drain, and place on a lightly oiled tray until needed.

To finish, heat the butter in a pan over medium-high heat until lightly browned. Add the apple & sage & cook for one minute. Add the cooked gnocchi & the blue cheese. Mix to combine. Serve hot, paired with a bottle of Beau’s Cœur Noir Black IPA.


With Fous Alliés…

Baked Camembert with Mustard Fruits

Recipe from Beau’s Chef Bruce
Yield: Serves 4 as a decadent treat

The warm soft brie pears well with the earthy, slightly tart character of the beer & the fruit plays well with the tropical fruit notes. Traditionally the mustard fruits are made with wine; I have substituted beer here for a different flavour.

Ingredients

moniques photo 2600 mL Beau’s Fous Alliés Mango Saison
1 cups cider vinegar
2 cups white sugar
¼ cups yellow mustard seeds
2 Tbsp mustard powder
½ tsp chili flakes
2 cups pitted prunes, roughly chopped
1 cups dried black mission figs, stemmed & quartered
1 cups dried cranberries
3 fresh pears, cored & diced in ¼” cubes
3 tart apples, cored & diced in ¼” cubes
2 300g wheels Camembert

Method

In a stainless steel pot bring the beer, vinegar, sugar, and the spices to a boil. Simmer on medium-high for 15 minutes (careful, it may overflow!) You want the liquid to reduce by about half.

Add the prunes, figs and cranberries; simmer a further 15 minutes. Add the apples and pears, then cook until they are soft but not mushy. Remove from the heat, pour into clean jars, cool, cover, and refrigerate.

The cheese can be warmed in many ways: I often put it directly on the BBQ (medium heat); on a tray in a 350 F oven; or even in a medium-heat pan on the stove. Heat the camembert for 5 minutes, turning 2 or 3 times (it will puff up slightly).

Place it on a nice serving plate or board and slit open the cheese; spoon the prepared mustard fruits into the cheese, and serve with warm sliced baguette and a glass of Beau’s Fous Alliés.

 

With Farm Table: Grisette…

Roasted Potatoes with Riopelle Cheese

Recipe & photo from Beau’s Chef Bruce

These potatoes get crisp and delicious in the oven. The caramelized flavours of the potatoes & the unctuous creaminess of the cheese pair beautifully with Farm Table: Grisette. Duck fat is available in good butcher shops in small tubs. If you wish not to use the duck fat, olive oil is a reasonable substitute.

Yield: Serves 4 as an appetizer

Ingredients

1 lb potatoes (fingerlings or small new potatoes)
6 cloves garlic, unpeeled
2 tbsp duck fat, melted (or olive oil)
⅓tsp kosher salt
Freshly milled black pepper
¼ tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp fresh thyme, leaves only, chopped
4 slices Riopelle cheese (or other triple crème cheese, such as St-Honoré)

Method

Preheat the oven to 400 F. In a bowl mix together the duck fat or olive oil, salt, pepper paprika and thyme. Toss the potatoes and garlic cloves with the mixture, & place on a parchment-lined baking sheet in a single layer. Roast for 30 minutes or until soft on the inside & nicely crispy on the outside.

Remove potatoes from the oven and divide between 4 ovenproof dinner plates. Place a slice of cheese on each pile of potatoes. Place the plates on a baking sheet & bake for 3-4 minutes, or until the cheese is just soft & melting.

Remove hot plates carefully from the oven, and serve with a glass of Farm Table: Grisette.

 

With Screamin Beaver Oak Aged Double IPA…

Thyme-seared Salmon

Recipe & photo from Beau’s Chef Bruce
Yield: Serves 4 as a main course

This is a dish meant for wild salmon, particularly West coast fish like Coho or Sockeye.

If you can getyour hands on Red Spring salmon this dish will move to another ethereal plane. The oily fish matches well with the malt character in the beer, and the hops are matched by the pepper and thyme.

screamin-beaver-salmon2-300x300Ingredients

4x 6 oz salmon fillets, skin on
2 Tbsp good peppery olive oil
2 tsp fresh thyme, leaves only, chopped
1 Tbsp coarsely ground black pepper
2 tsp kosher salt
2 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp grapeseed oil
3 Tbsp Beau’s Screamin’ Beaver Oak Aged Double IPA

 Method

Preheat the oven to 425 F.

Rub the flesh side of the salmon with the olive oil. Coat with the thyme, pepper, and salt.

Heat a heavy-bottomed pan (cast iron is ideal) on med-high until hot but not smoking. Add the butter and grapeseed oil to the pan and, when melted and beginning to brown, add the salmon flesh side down. Cook for 1 minute and turn over, then place the pan in the oven and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from the oven and place back on a med-high burner.

Add the beer to the pan and baste the fish with the beer & butter-oil mix. Remove from the pan and serve with the pan drippings. This is fabulous served with a kale & sweet onion risotto, alongside a snifter of Beau’s Screamin’ Beaver.

Another neat recipe to try…

Moroccan Chickpea, Lentil & Tomato Stew with Dosa

Recipe from Beau’s Chef Bruce

This recipe was showcased last week at the Operation Come Home’s “Poor Chef’s Competition”: where professional Ottawa chefs were asked to prepare a dish for $3.15. The chefs were told that the recipe could include a maximum of 3 items that would easily be found in a food bank cupboard. This special lunch hour event was intended to help raise awareness of the reality of youth homelessness in one of our local communities.

No beer is in this dish to ensure that Chef Bruce would stay within his $3.15 budget

Notes from Chef Bruce: Writing this recipe in 2016 – the year of the pulses– it was a natural fit to include chickpeas & lentils as they provide protein and are a good way to make a filling meal while stretching your food dollar. The dosa is a whimsical touch that makes it fun to eat, and yes even as adults we can eat with our fingers. The vegetables are the variable part of the whole adventure. Go to what I lovingly refer to as the ‘Island of Lost Vegetables’ (a.k.a. the marked-down vegetable cart). Use your imagination & have some fun! You can also use tinned or frozen veggies in a pinch.

Ingredients

For the stew…

1 medium sweet potato
1 small onion, peeled & finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, peeled & finely chopped
1 cup red lentils (green are fine as well, the stew will just have to simmer longer)
1 28 oz tin chickpeas
1 28 oz tin chopped tomatoes
2 cups of chopped mixed vegetables (e.g. zucchini, mushrooms, carrots)
4 tsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp Moroccan spice (recipe follows)

Method

In a pot large enough to hold all the vegetables, heat 2 tsp of the oil on medium heat. Add the onions & garlic. Cook until soft and they smell good. Add the lentils, vegetables and spices and stir well, then add the tomatoes & chickpeas & stir well. Simmer for 30 minutes on medium heat, stirring often.

While the stew is cooking, wash the sweet potato & prick all over with a fork. Rub with 1 tsp of the oil and place on a plate, then microwave it on high for 10 minutes. Remove from the microwave and cut in half lengthwise (careful it’s hot!) Heat a small frying pan with 1 tsp of the oil. Place the sweet potato cut side down into the pan, and cook until nicely browned, about 3-4 minutes.

Remove potatoes to a clean plate, cut side up. Spoon the stew over the sweet potato & serve with the dosa.

Ingredients

For the Moroccan spice…

1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground coriander seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground black pepper
¼ tsp cayenne
½ tsp smoked paprika

Mix all together and reserve until needed.

Ingredients

For the Dosa….

1 cup chickpea flour
½ cups all-purpose flour
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 ½ tsp Moroccan spice
1 ¾ cups water
1 Tbsp butter, melted
2 tsp vegetable oil

Method

In a bowl whisk together the chickpea flour, all-purpose flour, baking soda, Moroccan spice, and salt. Add the water and melted butter, and mix well to combine.

Preheat an 8” non-stick skillet over medium heat. When the skillet is hot, brush with a little oil. Pour about a half-cup of batter into the centre of the skillet, tilting the pan until the batter evenly covers the bottom of the skillet. When the edges begin to peel backand the dosa begins to brown (about 3- 4 minutes), use a spatula to flip it over and cook for about 10 seconds. Transfer to a clean plate.

Repeat until you have used all the batter (you should have 4-6 dosa).

Onto each dosa, spoon stew over the sweet potato & serve.

 

Enjoy your Savvy Hip Hops!

 

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MacKinnon Brothers grows from barnhouse to brewhouse

Posted by Katy

Monday, February 8th, 2016
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Savvy Hip Hops

Savvy Hip Hops beer of the month club
Featuring MacKinnon Brothers Brewing
–  January 2016 –

At MacKinnon Brothers BrewingIvan and Daniel have taken a passion for their ancestral land and changed the focus from farming to brewing. With that slight change, it doesn’t mean that the brothers have forgotten about their farming roots. If anything, brewing has focused their efforts as they hope to one day source all of the ingredients that go into their beer from their family farm.

The 1784 farmland – located in the rural town of Bath, Ontario – is already providing the water as well as some wheat and hops for their brews, this could be one of the first breweries in Ontario you could say has its own terroir.

In this month’s Savvy Hip Hops Taste Case, you will find these beers…

…in your Quick Picks:

  • Savvy Hip Hops beer of the month clubCrosscut Canadian Ale – 4 cans
  • 8 Man English Pale Ale – squealer bottle
  • Red Fox Ale – squealer bottle
  • Wild Peppermint Stout – squealer bottle

…in your Taste Case:

  • Crosscut Canadian Ale – 6 cans
  • 8 Man English Pale Ale – squealer bottle
  • Red Fox Ale – squealer bottle
  • Wild Peppermint Stout – squealer bottle
  • 1784 Historic Ale – squealer bottle

Need more beer?

If you would like additional bottles of any beer featured in Savvy Hip Hops, just call our Savvy Brew Crew & we’ll do our best to arrange a special shipment for you. Put us on speed dial 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) or cheers@savvycompany.ca

Cheers!
– Debbie & the Savvy Brew Crew

 

Introducing…
MacKinnon Brothers Brewing Company

by Katy Watts

 

MacKinnon Brothers - grainsAs I continue my journey of learning about craft beer and how it’s brewed I’ve discovered there isn’t one ‘best’ way to do it. In fact, one of the thrills of being a craft beer fan is being able to visit local breweries and learning what special ingredients or techniques a brewer uses to impart different flavours, aromas and even colour in beer.  Ivan & Daniel explained it best…

The ingredients for many of the beers we enjoy are ordered. Hops are bought in pellet-form from the United States and Europe. Malt comes in sacks from one of the great malting companies. Yeast is ordered from a catalogue and water is purified and treated with minerals. Since all of these ingredients are, for the most part, brought in there is no ‘beer terroir’ like there is in the wine world. When two breweries use identical ingredients, the flavour difference will come from the brewmaster’s skill, talent and experience, not where the ingredients came from.

MacKinnon Brothers Brewing wants to change that. They may not overtly say they are adding terroir to their beers. Rather they are pledging to have their family farm provide 100% of the ingredients for the brews will give their beer a unique character that no other brewery has. 

The Family Farm

MacKinnon Brothers - breweryThe MacKinnon Brothers Brewing was first established as a family farm in 1784 when the ancestors of Ivan and Dan MacKinnon settled the area after the American Revolution. In recent years, farming hasn’t been as sustainable as it once was so the brothers decided to stop traditional farming and convert a barnhouse to a brewhouse (see photo at right) and a chicken coup into a retail space. “With grain prices falling we thought we’d create some value-added opportunity to the farm,” explained Dan during our interview. While they continue to grow wheat and spelt on their land, they’ve added hops and barley to the surrounding fields. They have even taken over some of the neighboring farms to reach their goal of producing all of the ingredients for their beers.

The Dynamic Brothers

Source - Kingston - Mackinnon_brothers_croppedThe brothers are no strangers to beer, brewing and working on a farm. Dan the Brewmaster (centre in photo), studied Agriculture at Guelph University before completing a Masters in Brewing and Distilling at Heriot Watt University in Scotland. After working in England at CampdenBRI he returned to Canada to work for Silversmith Brewery in Niagara as the Brewmaster. Ivan’s backstory (right in photo) is that he went to Queen’s University and worked as a mechanical engineer for seven years at Kellogg’s before returning home to use those skills on the family farm.

photo credit: kingstonregion.com

Keeping it Local

MacKinnon Brothers Brewery - keg deliveryMacKinnon Brothers Brewing currently only sells their flagship, Crosscut Canadian Ale, at select LCBO’s in the Kingston & Toronto area and there are no plans of expanding distribution…apart from shipping to our Savvy Hip Hops subscribers that is! They want their beer to supply the Loyalist Township and be a staple of the community.They’ll always welcome visitors though, so come visit them at the chicken coup and refill your squealer bottles.  Look at this for beer delivery (see photo at right).

Here’s to the MacKinnon Brothers Brewing crew!

 

  • Savvy Hip Hops Tasting Notes •

Katy shares her notes about each beer, along with her picks on what to serve … and some fun recipes too!

Crosscut Canadian Ale

MacKinnon Brothers Brewery - CrosscutThis 5.2% Alcohol by volume (ABV), 15 International Bitterness Units (IBU) Golden Ale is the MacKinnon Brothers rendition of a traditional Canadian ale. They use Herkules and Sassasprat hops and add a portion of wheat from their farm to the grain bill.

Tasting Notes: This beer starts with a sweet malt smell and an upfront cereal flavour and subtle honey flavour. The hops kick in mid-sip with a subtle herbal note before being washed away in a wave of carbonated crispness. This may have been designed to be an easy drinking, sessionable beer, but there’s a wonderful layered flavour that will make you pause after each sip.

Suggested Food Pairing: With a strong malt bill and palate cleansing scrubbing bubbles (a good carbonation level), Crosscut can sit alongside spicy chili, BBQ ribs, sticky chicken or braised beef.

8 Man English Pale Ale

This traditional English Pale Ale is brewed using a higher concentration of malt to water giving it a healthy 5.8% ABV, 25 IBU and a rich, almost creamy body.

Tasting Notes: This is malt rich! Biscuit and caramel sweetness explode out of the growler when you crack it, followed by some floral/earthy hops and just the slightest hint of fruity esters. The flavour is more of that warm biscuit, caramel malt, but with more of that hop bitterness trying to compete for center stage. What’s most striking though is the mouthfeel – thick, rich, luxurious! What a treat.

Suggested Food Pairing: With a traditional English beer, you have to go with an English pairing. Order (or make) your favourite curry, try your hand at making fish and chips or serve yourself a good wedge of Stilton or old Cheddar.

Red Fox AleMacKinnon Brothers - growler

A striking red ale with a full thick head, this 4.2% ABV, 32 IBU unique style is dry hopped with Citra and brewed with a blend of red malts and a 1% infusion of fresh pressed local beet juice.

Tasting Notes: It’s amazing what a small amount of beet juice will do to the colour of the beer. Trust me when I say that you will stop and admire the redness of this brew once you have it in a glass. The aroma is distinctly Citra with some floral notes, peach, and grapefruit. The flavour has some mild grain sweetness before dipping into bitter tropical fruit notes. Highly addictive!

Suggested Food Pairing: The hopping in this beer will work well with Thai curries, Cajun cuisine and a warming chili. Don’t be afraid to pair it with stronger cheeses like blue and sharp cheddar – the bitter citrus finish will compliment them well.

Wild Peppermint Stout

This classic 4.8% ABV, 40 IBU classic Irish Dry Stout is brewed using wild peppermint that was handpicked in the fall. The result is a refreshing twist to a classic style!

Tasting Notes: There’s a good amount of mint aroma that wafts off this beer as it makes it way to your mouth. The flavour is more subdued with good amounts of coffee, chocolate and roasted barley filling the senses before having the mint add some lingering scotch mint freshness.

Suggested Food Pairing: The roasted barley and additionof mint makes this a great match for rich foods, especially roasted meat. Serve alongside a decadent dinner of lamb shank and roast potato and pour a second glass for a dark chocolate cake dessert.

1784 Historic Ale

 

Brewed using a mix of raw and malted grains, wild hops and fresh baker’s yeast, this strong 8.4% unfiltered brew commemorates the Loyalist settlers and the year the family farm was founded.

Tasting Notes: 1784 is a strong, rich complex sweet flavors resulting from the mix of grains, unique brewing process and the long boil used.  There’s a good estery/fruity taste that’s similar to that of a German style wheat beer, derived mainly from the baker’s yeast. Carbonation levels are low, as was traditional at the time, which makes this beer go down a bit to easy for strength, so be careful and enjoy!

Suggested Food Pairing: The baker’s yeast lends a bready character that is really unique, coupled with the high alcohol I’d pair this with a rich bread pudding with vanilla custard. Yum!

 

Recipes to enjoy with the featured Savvy Hip Hops •

 

With Crosscut Canadian Ale…

Crosscut Oven Fried Chicken

Ingredients

Beer Fried Chicken1 cup Crosscut Canadian Ale
1 cup buttermilk
¼ cup parsley, chopped
¼ cup chives, chopped
¼ cup basil, chopped
¼ cup rosemary, chopped
1 tsp salt
½ tsp black pepper
1 chicken (3-4lbs), divided
2 cups bread crumbs

Method

In large, shallow dish, whisk together Crosscut, buttermilk, half of the combined herbs, salt and pepper. Add chicken to dish, turning to coat all sides. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 24 hours. Turn chicken occasionally as it marinates.

Preheat oven to 400ºF. Cover a large sheet pan with parchment paper or coat with cooking spray.

In shallow dish, place bread crumbs and remaining half of herbs. Stir to distribute herbs evenly.

Remove chicken from marinade and drain. Dip each piece of chicken in the crumbs, rolling to coat all sides thoroughly. Place chicken pieces on sheet pan, leaving space between each piece.

Bake 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until chicken is golden brown on top and cooked through. Baking time will depend on size of chicken pieces.

To test for doneness, insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the meat. The chicken is done when the temperature registers 160 F.

 

With Eight Man English Pale Ale…

Beyond Easy Beer Bread

Recipe & photo from Farmgirl Fare

Beer BreadIngredients

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 Tbspgranulated sugar
1 Tbspbaking powder
1 tsp salt
2 Tbspchopped fresh dill (2 tsp dried)
1 cup finely grated sharp cheddar cheese
12 oz 8 Man English Pale Ale

Method

Heat the oven to 375F. Combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, dill, and cheddar in a large mixing bowl. Slowly stir in the 8 Man English Pale Ale and mix just until combined. The batter will be thick.

Spread in a greased 8-inch loaf pan, brush with the egg glaze if desired, and bake until golden brown and a toothpick stuck in the center comes out clean, about 45 minutes.

Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Remove from the pan and cool 10 more minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.


With Wild Peppermint Stout…

Chocolate Mint Stout Lava Cake

Recipe & photo from The Beeroness

Ingredients

Chocolate-Mint-Stout-Lava-Cake2-1024x10243.5 oz 70% dark chocolate
10 Tbsp butter
2/3cup Wild Peppermint Stout
¼ tsp peppermint extract
3 eggs and 3 additional egg yolks
1 ½ cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup cocoa powder
¾ cup flour
1 tsp espresso powder
2 Tbsp dark chocolate chips

 Method

Preheat oven to 425F.

Butter six soufflé dishes very well. The best way to do this is to soften butter (or use vegetable shortening or margarine) and a wadded up paper towel, smear a large amount inside each dish, making sure to get into the edges.

In a saucepan over medium heat, add the chocolate and butter. Stir constantly until chocolate is melted, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Add Wild Peppermint Stout, and peppermint extract, stir to combine. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs, yolks and powdered sugar.Pour chocolate mixture over egg mixture, stir to combine.

Sprinkle cocoa powder, espresso powder and flour over chocolate mixture, stir until just combined.

Divide equally between soufflé dishes, making sure not to fill more than 2/3 full. Press about 4 to 5 chocolate chips into the very center of each cake (can be made one day ahead, cover and chill).

Bake at 425F until the outside is set, but the center is still liquid, about 9 minute no more than 13. (Note: Glass baking dishes cook much faster than ceramic dishes. Take these out of the oven when it looks as if they “need a few more minutes,” you want a very runny center.)

Run a butter knife around the edge of the cake. Place a plate on top of each ramekin, turn upside down, lift ramekin to reveal cake. Serve immediately.

 

With 1784 Historic Ale…

Ale Spiked Bread Pudding

Recipe & photo from DRAFT Magazine

bread puddingIngredients

1 1lb loaf French bread, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 ¼ cups sugar
3 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup 1784 Historic Ale
2 tsp vanilla extract
½ tsp cinnamon

Beer Cream Sauce (optional…but why not?)

1 cup heavy cream
¼ cup whole milk
¼ cup granulated sugar
1 Tbsp cornstarch
6 Tbsp 1784 Historic Ale
Dash of salt
1 Tbsp unsalted butter

Method

Preheat the oven to 350F.

Add the bread cubes in an even layer to a greased 9-by-13-inch baking dish.

In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, eggs, buttermilk, beer, vanilla and cinnamon. Pour the mixture over the bread.

Bake 40 minutes or until set. Serve warm or cold, with or without beer cream sauce (below).

For the Beer Cream Sauce

In a saucepan over medium heat, combine the cream, milk and sugar. Combine the cornstarch and beer in a small mixing bowl and whisk together.

Pour the beer mixture into the cream and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and stir occasionally until thickened and sauce like, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the butter and salt.

Serve warm, drizzled over the bread pudding, pie, pound cake or other desserts.

 

Enjoy your Savvy Hip Hops!

 

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Kichesippi – proud to be Ottawa’s beer

Posted by Melanie

Tuesday, December 29th, 2015
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Savvy Hip Hops

Savvy Hip Hops beer of the month club
Featuring Kichesippi Beer
–  December 2015 –

As 2015 wraps up & another year is upon us, we’re happy to bring you a fantastic mix of beers from Kichesippi Beer Co. which was our feature beer in December. It is fitting that during a month filled with spending time with friends and family, that we feature a family-focused craft brewery dedicated to preserving an important resource and key beer-making ingredient (water!) as well as promoting Ottawa’s history with every beer.

Paul MeekCo-owner and President of Kichesippi, Paul Meek, is proud of the fact that Kichesippi beer is sold only in the Ottawa area. “We are Ottawa’s beer.” They will occasionally feature some of their beers in Toronto, but purely to satisfy the demand from beer lovers in the area requesting Kichesippi brews.   So, tuck into your Taste Case and flip through the following pages to learn a bit more below about this neat brewery.

 

hiphops_large-292x300

Open your Savvy Hip Hops Taste Case…

…and find a variety of 4-packs and ‘bombers’ from Kichesippi Beer Co.’s, including:
1 x 750 mL bottle – Ice Harvest Eisbock
2 x 750 mL bottles Wuchak Black
4 x 473 mL cans – Heller Highwater
4 x 473 mL cans – Radler
4 x 473 mL cans – Bristol Stout

Kraving more Kichesippi ?

Would you like more beer from this month’s Savvy Hip Hops? Just call our Savvy Brew Crew & we’ll arrange a special shipment for you (if it is still available at the brewery that is!). Put us on speed dial – Savvy Hip Hops Hotline 613-SAVVYCO
(728-8926) or cheers@savvycompany.ca

Cheers!
Debbie & the Savvy Brew Crew


Introducing…
Kichesippi Beer Co.

by Melanie Allen, member of the Savvy Brew Crew

 

I met with the man behind the brewery – Paul Meek – as well as the Ops Man – Philip Ware – at the brewery on a chilly November morning. As we settled into the office to chat, they were both pleased to announce that they are in the process of expanding the brewery in order to provide space for special events. Taking over space located right next to the brewery, they will be able to accommodate groups for work-related events or friendly gatherings or large group tastings.   They anticipate having this new space available in the New Year.

The Great River

bottling lineIn 1855 when the city of Ottawa was founded, Kichesippi was the name of the river that ran through the city. The brewery is intentionally focused on preservation; not only preserving Ottawa’s natural resources, but also on preserving it’s history.

For every brewery tour, $1 is donated to Ottawa Riverkeepers.   When I asked Paul how this came about, he explained,“without clean water, we can’t make a good product. It was only fitting that we give back in some way to this natural resource that is a key ingredient in every brew.” Kichessippi is now also an “official keeper” of part of the Ottawa River (more specifically, Bate Island, located under Island Park Drive & Champlain Bridge). Twice a year, all employees head to the Island for a ½ day to help clean it up, and they are already seeing what a difference they’ve made.

It’s all about family

You may or may not know this, but Kichesippi also makes it’s very own line of olde fashioned soda! Released in 2013 under the name Harvey & Verns, they started out offering Root Beer, then quickly expanded to a Ginger Beer and a Cream Soda. And this year,a new Lime Soda was added.

creamsoda_2048x2048Who are Harvey and Vern? Harvey was Paul’s grandfather, Vern, his father-in-law.   Why sodas? Paul replied that “a lot of what gets created at Kichesippi is about me reliving my youth”, and out of this came his idea for making soda. When Paul was a kid, he would go visit his grandfather on their farm located in Quyon, Quebec, and after helping on the farm all day, they would wash up in the lake and then Harvey would take him out and buy him a soda pop.

Looking around the industry, they saw that friends and fellow breweries in Canada and the United States were making their own line of sodas. They realized they had the infrastructure to make sodas too – no additional equipment would be required – so, “we went for it” says Paul.

I confess – the Ginger Beer is my favorite with it’s zingy, powerful ginger flavor. Kids, however,seem to love the Cream Soda and Root Beer. The sodas are available at the brewery, as well as many restaurants and food trucks in and around Ottawa.

Caring about the community

Not only does Kichesippi care about the city’s natural resources, they also care about promoting Ottawa’s history (every beer has a story that gets tied into it’s name and packaging): the 1855 honors the history behind the Alexander Bridge and Ottawa’s incorporation; the Logger, promotes Ottawa’s logging industry back in the 1800’s. There is plenty of thought and research done to help preserve Ottawa’s history with every beer.

Kbeer bicycleMany schools tour the brewery. Young minds curious about how their passion for science and chemistry might lead them down the path of making fine craft beer one day.

Along with donations to the Ottawa Riverkeepers, a portion of the sales from each growler sold goes toward Juvenile Diabetes research (in support of his Paul’s son Alex). Kichesippi sponsors many local recreational sports teams, tournaments and festivals. And Paul has also partnered with the Ottawa Chamber of Commerce to promote business education for new entrepreneurs, and is a member of the Beer Canada Lobby group.

For all these reasons, in November, the mayor of Ottawa honored Paul and 13 other nominees with the Order of Ottawa, to celebrate outstanding citizens for their contributions in various areas of life which has benefited others in the community.   When I bring this up with Paul, he is of course thankful for the honor, but can’t help but refer to it as being something that “we” (the Kichesippi family) received.  

Cheers to Paul Meek & the Kichesippi team!               

 

Savvy Hip Hops Tasting Notes •

Below are Melanie’s tasting notes for each beer, additional information on the beers, along with suggested food pairings and recipes to try out with your beers.

Ice Harvest Eisbock

Membership has benefits! All of our Savvy Hip Hop suds-scribers are lucky indeed, as I wasn’t able to taste this creation since it’s a limited edition and was only brewed in small quantities! Eisbock (which means “ice strong beer”) undergoes a freezing process that concentrates the sugar and alcohol in the brew (similar in theory to keeping grapes on the vine so that they will freeze, concentrating the flavors within and creating ice wine). Kichesippi brewed this special in order to celebrate their 5th anniversary earlier this year. After the party, Paul stashed away enough bottles for us to include in your Taste Case. 13.8% ABV

Tasting Notes: I cannot comment specifically on Kichesippi’s Eisbock since I was unable to try the goods, however for this type of brew, this is a full-bodied beer and although you will taste the high alcohol content, it should not be harsh or overpowering, but provide more of a warming feeling. Dark coffee or cola in colour and a syrupy mouth-feel, this will provide lovely malty, rich flavours on the palate.

Suggested Food Pairing: Strong cheeses such as Limburger or Gouda, or roasted game meat.   Personally, I would love to try this with my Grandpa Allen’s Christmas Pudding!

 

Wuchuk Black logoWuchak Black

This Black IPA (Cascadian Dark Ale) was Kichesippi’s first, and is now their most popular seasonal brew. Ideal for this time of year with roasted malt flavors, and the major hop presence that you would expect from an IPA.Black, bitter and strong.6.0% ABV and 77 IBUs.

Tasting Notes: Very dark brown (black really) color. On the nose: roasted coffee and dark chocolate. On the palate: black licorice, roasted coffee with a slightly bitter finish.

Suggested Food Pairing: This IPA would be delicious with various slow-cooked meats (think gamey stews), but I would also venture trying this with some Mole Chicken or Chocolate Bacon Brownies.

 

Heller Highwater logoHeller Highwater

This beer (Helles) is a pale straw coloured Bavarian Lager. Brewed with German noble hops and genuine Munich yeast, it is a classic example of the session beers enjoyed in Bavarian beer gardens. The beer has a clean malt flavour with a slight hop presence. 4.8% ABV and 19 IBU.

Tasting Notes: Medium golden color with a fluffy white head when poured into a glass.Slight aroma of cereal grains (malt), citrus and herbs on the nose. Smooth and crisp, very refreshing and clean with a repeat of the malt, citrus and mild hoppiness on the palate. Creamy mouthfeel with a mild hoppiness on the finish.

Suggested Food Pairing: Helles beer comes from Bavaria (Germany), so I say, have this with your favourite German-style food on a bun: bratwurst (or currywurst) sausage or chicken (or veal) schnitzel.

 

radlerRadler

Radler first became popular in 1922 in the town of Deisenhofen, Germany. The beverage was an instant favourite with the local cyclists travelling from Munich. Kichesippi first made this beer in 2014 to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of Pub Italia (located on Preston Street in Ottawa). 3.0% ABV, 0 IBUs.

Tasting Notes: Cloudy orange colour with a hint of pink.On the nose, fresh aromas of candied grapefruit and tangerines. Flavors repeat on the palate, which a nice touch of cereal (malt) to balance it out. A really great Radler that still tastes like a beer and provides a refreshing and crisp finish.

Suggested Food Pairing: Salads where the main attraction is citrus fruit and nuts, but I would also recommend this with lighter meat dishes, such as Orange-braised pulled pork tacos.

 

bristol stoutBristol Stout

The inspiration for this beer came from family who have been farming in Bristol, Quebec since 1925. The family first started out with dairy cattle and now are farming soybeans and hay. This stout offers a balance of roasted malts and residual sweetness.   4.8% ABV and 36 IBUs.

Tasting Notes: Dark brown in color, there is definitely a sweet aroma on the nose, some honey and milk chocolate. On the palate a repeat of this but add to it French Canadian taffy (in French, it’s called “la tire de Ste-Catherine”) and light maple syrup.

Suggested Food Pairing: Go ahead and have this with a hearty brunch that includes Banana Pancakes and a side of bacon! Try the recipe on the following pages.   I also wouldn’t hesitate to have this with dessert, something not overly rich or sweet: a Caramel Flan.

 

 • Recipes to enjoy with the featured Savvy Hip Hops •

 

With Kichesippi Radler

Orange-braised Pulled Pork Tacos

From: www.coles.com.au
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 4 hours (stove top) or 8 hours (slow cooker)
Yield: 10 tacos

Ingredients

pulled poke2 tbsp Olive Oil
1 1/2 kg Pork Shoulder Roast
1 Medium Onion, finely diced
4 Garlic Cloves, finely diced
1 tbsp Fennel Seeds
1 tsp Cumin Seeds
zest and juice from 3 oranges
2 cups Salt Reduced Chicken Stock
6 cups Water
1/2 tsp Black Peppercorns
Your favourite coleslaw
10 Flour Tortillas

Method

Place a large saucepan / stockpot over medium heat.

Add 1tablespoon of the oil, once hot, add pork and sear on each side until a golden. Remove and set aside.

Add remaining oil, and once hot, add onion, cooking for a few minutes, then add garlic, fennel and cumin seeds and cook for a further 2 minutes.

Return pork to the pan and add orange zest and juice, stock, water and black peppercorns and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and continue cooking, covered, on low heat for 3 – 4 hours. Alternatively cook in slow cooker for 6 – 8 hours. Once cooked the meat will shred / pull apart very easily but keep in stock on low heat until ready to serve.

To serve, heat tortillas according to packet instructions. Remove pork from stock retaining some of the orange zest and stock to drizzle over the pork. Place some coleslaw on the tortilla topped with pork, extra coriander and chilli if desired. Drizzle with a little of the pork stock for extra juiciness and flavour.

 

With Kichesippi Bristol Stout                    

Homemade Banana Pancakes

From: www.onceuponachef.com

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Yield: 12 4-inch pancakes

pancakesIngredients

1-1/2 cups all purpose flour, spooned into measuring cup and leveled off
2 tablespoons sugar
2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 small, over-ripe banana, peeled (the browner, the better)
1 cup low fat milk
2 Tbsp craft beer – IPA or ale are recommended
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

For Cooking

Vegetable oil
Unsalted butter

For Serving

Maple syrup, Sliced bananas, Confectioners’ sugar (optional)

Method

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.

In a small bowl, mash the banana with a fork until almost smooth. Whisk in the eggs, then add the milk and vanilla and whisk until well blended.

Pour the banana mixture and the melted butter into the flour mixture. Fold the batter gently with a rubber spatula until just blended; do not over-mix. The batter should be thick and lumpy. Adjust the thickness of the batter by adding more beer – tablespoon by tablespoon until you get the right consistency.  Slaving over the griddle is hard work, so enjoy the rest of the open bottle.

Set a griddle or non-stick pan over medium heat until hot. Put a pad of butter and one tablespoon vegetable oil onto the griddle, and swirl it around.

Drop the batter by 1/4-cupfuls onto the griddle, spacing the pancakes about 2 inches apart. Cook until a few holes form on top of each pancake and the underside is golden brown, about 2 minutes. Flip the pancakes and cook until the bottom is golden brown and the top is puffed, 1 to 2 minutes more. Using the spatula, transfer the pancakes to a serving plate.

Wipe the griddle clean with paper towels, add more butter and oil, and repeat with the remaining batter.

Serve the pancakes while still hot with maple syrup, sliced bananas and confectioners’ sugar if desired.

 

With Kichesippi Wuchak Black

Bacon Caramel Brownies

From: www.thedomesticfront.com
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Yield: 16 pieces

Ingredientsbrownies

For the bacon caramel:

2 slices bacon
½ cup heavy cream
1 cup sugar
6 Tbsp. salted butter

For the Brownies:

8 Tbsp. salted butter, cut into pieces
6 oz. bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
¼ cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
3 large eggs
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup flour

Method

In a small saucepan, fry two slices of bacon until crisp (pre-cut bacon in half). Once cooked, remove bacon from saucepan and set aside, and reserve bacon grease in the pan.

Add cream to the pan and let cool. When bacon is cool, chop finely.

In a larger pan, heat the sugar over high heat until the mixture is liquid and a deep amber color. Add the butter and the cooled bacon cream all at once, and stir until the butter is melted. Add the chopped bacon and let the mixture cool thoroughly.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Line an 8 inch square pan with Parchment paper that covers the bottom and sides of the pan. Grease with butter or cooking spray.

In a large microwaveable bowl, melt the butter and the chocolate together in the microwave (start with 30 seconds, and stir thoroughly, then microwave for 10 seconds at a time, stirring between each bout of nuking, until the chocolate is melted and incorporated into the butter).

Add the cocoa and whisk until smooth, then add in the eggs, one at a time, and the sugar, vanilla and finally the flour. Stir only until combined.Scrape half of the batter into the prepared pan. Then drop about a third of the bacon caramel, evenly spaced, over the brownie batter in the pan. It doesn’t have to cover the whole batter, but should be in splotches.

Spread the remaining brownie batter over the top, then drop spoonfuls of the remaining caramel sauce over the top of the brownies and swirl.

Bake for 35 to 45 minutes.

Enjoy your Savvy Hip Hops & the Holidays!

 

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Nita Beer Company – Off The Charts

Posted by Katy

Monday, October 26th, 2015
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Savvy Hip Hops

Savvy Hip Hops beer of the month club
Featuring Nita Beer
–  October 2015 –

October has been an exciting month. If you’re like me, you kicked it off by raising a stein of craft at a local Oktoberfest celebration and followed that with a pint at home, anxiously awaiting election results. By the time the Savvy Hip Hops Taste Cases roll out of Nita Beer Company in Ottawa who knows what we’ll be toasting next, but you’ll have some fun Nita beers to raise!

Speaking of the types of beer that Nita Beer Company offers, some may be hard to place on the style chart. While some are fantastic examples of classics like American IPA or Irish Dry Stout, others don’t fit in any category. As Andy Nita, owner and brewer, said, “Sometimes we don’t even think about style – what happens if we do this.” I hope you’ll have as much fun drinking them as Andy and his crew did brewing them.

In this month’s Savvy Hip Hops Taste Case, you will find two (500ml) bottles of each:hiphops_large-292x300

Ten12
El Hefe
Brown Gone Coconuts
Perfectum
The Chad
OPA

 

Need more beer?

If you would like additional bottles of any beer featured in Savvy Hip Hops, just call our Savvy Brew Crew & we’ll do our best to arrange a special shipment for you.  Put us on speed dial – Savvy Hip Hops Hotline:
613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) or beerme@savvycompany.ca
Cheers!

Debbie & the Savvy Brew Crew

Introducing…
Nita Beer Company

by Katy Watts

Nita logo

I met with owner & brewer of Nita Beer Company, Andy Nita  – also known as Chief Beer Officer at the brewery.  We arranged a rendez-vous at one of Ottawa’s favourite spots for craft beer, the Arrow and Loon Pub. Andy & I had met several times before at brewery events, but I had never had the opportunity to chat with him over a beer about the brewery or his past experience with beer. So, knowing that this was not a quick conversation, I settled in with a pint, got my notes ready and ready to capture Andy’s story that I could share with you… 

Getting Technical

Growing up, Andy was a bit spoiled for beer. Having a father who routinely stocked the fridge with German imports gave Andy an early appreciation for quality, “I think my love and good taste in beer came from my Dad – a German guy. And like all young fellas, taking your Dad’s beers, I grew up on a pretty good selection.”

Nita selfieThat respect and love for beer grew and Andy wanted to pursue brewing school in Scotland, but the expense of studying abroad was too high. Instead he turned to books – two very lengthy and highly technical manuals: Yeast – The Practical Guide to Beer Fermentation as well as the brick of a book entitled Technology Brewing and Malting.

It was two years of studying these manuals, mostly used for commercial breweries, before Andy fired up his 40 litre pilot homebrew system. Quickly this keen student, was producing consistent beers and creating his own beer recipes that were getting great feedback from family and friends. It was those compliments that made Andy and his wife, Bridget, think they could take the big leap from homebrew to opening a brewery. 

Teamwork Builds the Brewery

Nita Beer - AndyWhere Andy is technical and has a solid background in electrical contracting and industrial process, his wife, Bridget, has the business and finance experience. While Andy was perfecting his recipes and shopping around for equipment, Bridget was creating the business plan to open the doors. Thanks to that detailed planning, Nita Beer Company started with a larger brewhouse than other local craft breweries. This allowed them to do larger batches and not worry about having to scale recipes when demand increased.

All of the preparation and planning doesn’t mean that they haven’t had to scramble though! The husband and wife team have found that the Ottawa craft beer community has been thirsty for their brews and they’re already ahead of schedule on their 5-year plan for the brewery.

In fact, they’ve just finished their first canning run of their flagship Ten12 and some of their seasonals – all in time for being featured in Savvy Hip Hops. Once they’ve perfected canning – which won’t be long – we might see that crazy can with a mountain bike jumping a cop car on the shelves at the Beer Store across Ontario.

Be on the look out!  And when you see it, you’ll be happy that we introduced you to Nita Beer. 

Here’s to Andy, Bridget & the brewery team!

Nita Beer - team

• Savvy HipHops Tasting Notes •

Katy shares her notes about each beer, along with her picks on what to serve … and some fun recipes too!

 

Ten12Nita - cans

This 5%, 45 International Bitterness Unit (IBU) brew is Nita Beer Company’s flagship. Its name shares two meanings – a reference to the opening of the fist beer garden in Munich, the Menterschwaige and a reference to the police 10-code (a shorthand way of communicating through the radio). 10-12 meaning, “visitors present”.

Tasting Notes: This hoppy blonde ale pours a clear copper with a caramel malt, grapefruit and nectarine aroma. The American hops show off their flavour with notes of pine, spice and grapefruit, but there’s a good amount of malt that helps counter it.

Suggested Food Pairing: Not only is this brew approachable to a variety of palates, but it’s very food friendly. Try it with spaghetti and meatballs, grilled chicken salads, shellfish or alongside tacos. Ten12 is a great brew to use for beer batters, try the attached recipe for onion rings or use it as an ingredient for beer battered fish!

 

El Hefe

Brewed using Hefeweizen yeast, this sessionable wheat beer has all of the flavour and aroma of a German wheat with a fraction of the alcohol content – only 3% ABV.

Tasting Notes: As soon as you pop the bottle you can smell that Hefeweizen yeast; aromas of banana esthers and spicy clove and pepper phenols wafting off the hazy pale straw liquid. The phenols return in the flavour with subtle clove notes and a big pepper-y finish with a crisp carbonated bite!

Suggested Food Pairing: While this beer is fairly light, the esthers and phenols will pair well with the spicing in cured meats and sausages and the crisp carbonation will help clear some of the fat off the palate. Another option would be to pair it with the spice and citrus of Mexican cuisine, either simple chicken or spicy barbacoa.

 

Mr Brown Gone Coconuts

This is Nita Beer Company’s Five Fingers American Brown Ale, with a twist. Adding coconut to the brew adds a pronounced aroma and sweet coconut flavour that brings out complimentary flavours. This 5.5% ABV brew won the People’s Choice Award at the 2015 Ottawa Craft Beer Festival (photo on right).

Tasting Notes: This is over-the-top coconut! The aroma is similar to coconut scented sunscreen with slight background notes of caramel malt. The flavour has more sweetness; with an emphasis on coconut and caramel and vanilla backing it up. It is reminiscent of a Bounty chocolate bar, and would probably pair well with one!

Suggested Food Pairing: This is a tough beer to pair. My go-to would be a chocolate cake or bowl of vanilla ice cream, but I think a sweeter Indian curry might work well with the big coconut sweetness.

 

Perfectum

This Dry Irish Stout was first poured at the brewery’s St. Patrick’s Day warm up event. Pouring 5% ABV and 50 IBU, this might become your cold weather favourite.

Tasting Notes: This opaque brown stout has an off white head that emits roasted malts, dark chocolate and a slight hop spice. The carbonation is lower than the other offerings, emphasizing the heavier body and roasted flavours.

Suggested Food Pairing: The roasted malt and chocolate bitterness of the stout offer a great contrast to the briny sweetness of a fresh shucked oyster. If oysters aren’t your thing, go for an indulgent flourless chocolate cake for the perfect chocolate overload.

 

The Chad

Brewed using French Aramis hops this 5% ABV, 40 IBU version of an India Pale Ale has a unique flavour profile compared to American hopped versions.

Tasting Notes: Aramis hops are new to me so there’s a lot of interesting things going on in the aroma – cantaloupe, bergamot orange, medicinal herbs along with some grainy malt sweetness. The flavour follows suite with more of that melon and Earl Grey tea flavour with a light grain backbone leading to a smooth dry finish with a slight lingering bitterness.

Suggested Food Pairing: The sweeter and dry flavours of this IPA have me going against traditional IPA pairings. Instead, pair this unusual IPA with a good charcuterie board filled with your favourite salumi and a farmhouse cheddar.

 

OPA

After finishing a bottle of this 6% ABV, 75 IBU India Pale Ale you may want to yell OPA! Brewed with a blend of five different American hops this beer is for the hop head in each of us.

Tasting Notes: This is jam packed full of hops and the aroma has a little bit of everything – pine, grapefruit, peach and herbs mixed in with some sweet cereal grains. The flavour has a more pronounced spice character with toasted grains and a lingering bitterness.

Suggested Food Pairing: A beer packed with this many hops deserves a robust food pairing that can stand up to a lot of flavour and it’s only fitting it be Greek. Pair it with lamb chops that have been marinated in lemon, garlic and oregano and taste how the herbs, citrus and char contrast and compliment the hops.

 

Recipes to enjoy with the featured Savvy Hip Hops •

 

With Ten12

Lamb Stew with Poppy Seed Dumplings

Recipe & photo credits – Eating Nose to Tail

IngredientsLamb stew

1 ½ pounds lamb stew meat
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Kosher salt and cracked black pepper
Vegetable oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely chopped
1 celery rib, finely chopped
1 parsnip, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2/3 cup Ten12
3 ½ cups chicken stock
½ bunch curly parsley, roughly chopped
2/3 cup frozen peas
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons poppy seeds
1 egg
1 cup milk

Method

Heat a large lidded pot over medium high heat and drizzle a large dose of vegetable in the pan. Combine flour, salt, pepper and toss lamb stew meat in the mixture – shaking off the excess. Brown lamb on all sides in batches adding more vegetable oil as needed between batches. Reserve meat.

Add chopped onion in the pot and cook until onions are soft and beginning to brown. Add carrot, celery, parsnip and garlic; cook until vegetables begin to soften. Add browned meat and juices back to pot and combine Ten12, chicken stock and ½ the parsley. Bring to a simmer over medium high heat, then turn to low and partially cover; cook until meat is tender (about 1 hour). Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Once meat is tender, make dumplings by whisking flour. Baking powder, salt and poppy seeds together. In a separate bowl, beat egg and combine with milk. Add milk and egg to flour mixture, stirring gently to combine.

Bring stew to a rolling simmer over medium high heat. Add dumpling batter to stew using ¼ measure cup until all batter is used. Let dumplings cook with a covered lid for 10 minutes. Remove lid and cook until dumplings are done (about 3 minutes). Garnish with parsley and serve alongside a can of Ten12!

 

With OPA

Cheddar, Garlic & IPA Soup

Recipe & photo credits – Serious Eats

IngredientsIPA Soup

1 cup unsalted butter
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 large yellow onion, diced
8 cloves garlic, minced
4 cups vegetable stock
1 cup OPA
1 cup whole milk (3.5%)
3 heads roasted garlic
1 Tbsp smoked paprika
½ teaspoon ground cumin
3 tablespoons ground cumin
2 ¼ pounds white cheddar cheese, grated
Salt
Ground white pepper
Chopped fresh chives

Method

To roast the garlic, preheat the oven to 350°F. Cut the top ¼ inch off of three heads of garlic, exposing the individual cloves. Place it cut side up on a large sheet of aluminum foil. Drizzle olive oil over the garlic and season with salt and pepper. Gather the foil around the garlic, folding and twisting the top to seal. Roast for 1 hour and let garlic cool completely. Use a fork to pull the roasted cloves out of the papery skin. Alternatively, you can squeeze the cloves out from the bottom using your hands.

Melt ¾ cup of butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour, whisking briskly to avoid lumps. Cook, stirring frequently, until the flour takes on a light blond colour (about 5 minute). Remove from heat.

Melt the remaining ¼ cup butter in a large soup pot over medium heat. Stir in the onion and minced garlic and cook until the garlic is aromatic (30 seconds to a minute). Add the vegetable stock, OPA and milk.  When the liquid begins to simmer, stir in the garlic, paprika and cumin. Using a handheld immersion blender or a regular blender, puree until smooth. Whisk in the flour mixture. Add the cheese a handful at a time, whisking after each addition until melted and smooth.

Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately, garnishing each serving with chopped chives.

 

 

With Perfectum

Beer Braised Ribs

Recipe & photo credits – Mark Bittman

IngredientsIndoor Ribs

1 rack pork loin back ribs, around 3 pounds
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
10 allspice berries
2 or 3 3-inch cinnamon sticks
10 slices unpeeled fresh ginger or 1 tablespoon ground ginger
5 dried red chillies or a teaspoon of cayenne pepper
5 cloves garlic, lightly smashed
500mL Perfectum

Method

Preheat oven to 300°F. Remove the membrane from the bottom side of the ribs and split the rack into two.

Season liberally with salt and pepper. Put oil in a large, deep ovenproof skillet or casserole that can later be covered. Turn heat to medium-high and, when oil shimmers, sear meat on both sides until nicely browned, turning as necessary.

Add allspice, cinnamon, ginger, chilies and garlic and stir; add Perfectum. Bring to a boil; cover pan and adjust heat so mixture simmers steadily. Put in oven and cook until meat is tender, about 1 hour.

Heat broiler. Drain meat and sprinkle it with salt and pepper. Broil on both sides until brown and crisp (about 1 or 2 minutes). Meanwhile, skim cooking liquid of fat, bring to a boil and use as sauce.

 

With The Chad

Beer Battered Onion Rings

Recipe & photo credits – The Kitchn

IngredientsBeer Battered Onion Rings

Canola oil, for frying
4 Vidalia onions
1 cup all-purpose flour
¾ cups The Chad
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Method

Fill a cast iron pot with a few inches of oil and heat on medium-high until it reaches 365° to 375°F.

Line a baking sheet with paper towels. While the oil heats, slice off the root and tip ends of the onions. Peel the onions and cut them crosswise into ¼-inch to ½-inch slices. Separate slices into individual rings, discarding the centers.

In a shallow mixing bowl, whisk the flour, cornstarch, salt and pepper to combine. Whisk in just enough The Chad to make a smooth paste, working the mixture as little as possible. Whisk in more The Chad (about ½ cup) until the batter is smooth and creamy – about the consistency of pancake batter.

Using tongs, dip an onion ring into the batter and flip to coat completely, shaking excess batter back into the bowl. Drop the ring into the oil and repeat, working in batches as not to crowd the pot. Fry until golden, flipping occasionally (about 4-5 minutes).

Remove the rings using a spider or tongs and transfer to the prepared sheet pan to drain. Season with additional salt and serve immediately.

 

Enjoy all of the beers in your Savvy Hip Hops!

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