Wednesday, October 30, 2013

cooking with beer - one-pot chipotle and maple glazed roasted chicken with blood & honey beer sauce

A maple syrup contest from got me thinking of a recipe including both maple syrup and beer. The above (recipe below) is what I came up with. I hope you enjoy!

2 large split chicken breasts (best chicken breast cut in my opinion)
1 small container chipotle peppers (w/ adobo sauce)
1 bottle of Pure maple syrup
4 or 5 large carrots (sliced thin on a bias)
1 bag of baby potatoes
1 bottle of Revolver Blood & Honey (wheat beer made w/ blood orange and honey)
Soy sauce
1 orange (will use the juice and zest) - use a blood orange if available
1 stick of butter (what of it?)
Olive oil
Salt & pepper to taste
Chopped chives for garnish

1. Preheat oven to 425 deg
2. Season chicken with olive oil, salt and pepper
3. While oven is preheating, make the maple chipotle glaze by adding a couple of chipotle peppers w/ adobo sauce and a whole bottle of pure maple syrup to a blender. Add a pinch of salt and blend until smooth.
4. With a brush, liberally brush chicken breasts with the glaze
5. In a large bowl season carrots and potatoes with olive oil, salt and pepper and a drizzle of the glaze
6. In a large cast iron skillet brush olive oil on bottom. Add chicken breasts with potatoes and carrots on either side. 
7. Place cast iron skillet in the middle of the oven
8. Cook for 20-25 minutes (depending on size of chicken, or until internal temp reaches 150 deg), occasionally re-glazing
9. Turn broiler on
10. Place chicken under broiler and cook an additional 5-10 minutes until glaze is crispy on chicken
11. Take cast iron out of oven. Place chicken, carrots and potatoes on a plate and cover until serving
12. With same cast iron, over medium heat on the stove, add 1 stick of butter
13. Once melted, add about 5 tablespoons of flour (might need more, just depends on how much fat dripped from the chicken as well)
14. Whisk together until a good roux is formed
15. Cook roux for about 5 minutes (this will get the flour taste out)
16. Start adding the Revolver Blood & Honey slowly while whisking (make sure to whisk hard to get all the goodies off the bottom as well). Add until desired sauce consistency is reached. Bring to a boil to see how thick it is (remember, can always add more if too thick)
17. Once desired consistency is reached, add a few dashes of soy sauce and the juice and zest of one orange
18. Take off heat and add one tablespoon of cold butter (this will finish the sauce and make a nice sheen to it)

Add potatoes and carrots on bottom of plate. Place glazed chicken breast on top. Pour sauce over chicken and around carrots and potatoes. Top with chopped chives. The sweet and spicy glaze on the chicken pairs so perfectly with the sauce and beer you might just fall out of your chair.

Pair with Revolver Blood & Honey (of course!). 

Leftovers? Breakfast tacos!

Monday, October 28, 2013

sunday funday at four corners brewing

423 Singleton Blvd, Dallas, TX

Tap Room:
Monday-Friday from 5-10pm
Saturday from 12-10pm
Sunday from 2-8pm
 - Pay by the glass
Every Saturday at 12pm and 1pm

About a half of a mile down the road from where I live sits Four Corners Brewing Co., a great local brewery dedicated to serving fresh beer using local flavors as inspiration. Their brewery tap room is open five days a week now, a dangerous option for me living so close. Their flavors are clean, crisp and robust. All of their mainstay beers are also 'sessionable' at around 6% abv or below, giving you the opportunity to enjoy plenty of their beer with your mates.


Their most popular beer Local Buzz is a honey-rye golden ale brewed with locally sourced honey. I love its sweet aromas, crisp mouth feel and dry finish. Also at 5.2% abv, pint after pint of this one can be enjoyed. Hell, take a look at the bee above, a few too many pints I think?

They even do pig roast parties like yesterday's Dia de los Puercos, which I didn't know was going on until I got there. Too bad I wasn't hungry, it looked delicious.

To me, there's nothing better than getting beer fresh from the brewery, and Four Corners Brewing is definitely not locking in the flavor department. If you're into darker, more roasty flavors, try their Block Party robust porter, another favorite of mine. Go check them out sometime, their tap room is nothing but friendly. Don't fret though, if you can't get out to the tap room, they also can their beer in badass 360 degree cans.

Beer with a view of downtown Dallas

Thursday, October 24, 2013

a weekend at gabf - day 2

By Matt Abendschein

Day 2

I woke up at 7 am refreshed and ready for the day. Unfortunately, nothing opened until 9 am. A long and drawn out morning coffee suited me just fine until Marlowe's, a brunch place right downtown, opened for business. Knowing all too well that a long day of debauchery and drinking was ahead of me, I went ahead and ordered a little hair of the dog that bit me, a spicy bloody mary with steak and eggs. This was a damn good breakfast to start the day off if I say so myself. The guys finally woke up and met up with me as I was finishing my bloody mary. They'll tell you I ordered a sangria next, but I'm going to just deny that right now (even though it's true). At 10 am now, it was time for a beer. My first beer of the day was an Odell 90 Schilling (a beer my uncle from Colorado introduced me to), something I hadn't had for quite some time. Damn I had forgotten how good it was. So crisp, so incredibly malty.

After another beer at Marlowe's it was time for another GABF session. This was the 'Member's Session' where members of the American Homebrewers or Brewers Association get a pre-sale ability to buy tickets. Also, you get a glass sampling cup instead of plastic. It's amazing how many fewer people dropped the glass this time around. Color me disappointed.

The Member's Session went until 4pm, which was a lot of time to sample more beer. We got to sample a lot of great beer we didn't get to sample on Friday so I'm glad we stayed the whole time. The Member's Session wasn't the only thing happening on Saturday. Texas was kicking ass at the awards ceremony as well, bringing back 10 medals among 9 breweries. America is really starting to take notice the amount of great breweries Texas has, bringing back so many medals each year.

Cedar Creek Belgian Style Dubbel - Cedar Creek Brewery - Belgian Style Abbey Ale

Atrial Rubicite - Jester King Brewery - Belgian Style Lambic or Sour Ale

Blind Jake  - Pinthouse Pizza - Brown Porter

Public Ale  - Community Beer Co. - Extra Special Bitter

Brewers Cut Altbier - Real Ale Brewing Co. - German-Style Altbier

Black Thunder - Austin Beerworks - German-Style Schwarzbier

Saint Arnold Weedwacker - Saint Arnold Brewing Co. - German Style Wheat Ale

Bitterama - Namaste Brewing at the Whip In - Herb and Spice Beer

Elba - Black Star Co-op Pub and Brewery - Herb and Spice Beer

Saint Arnold - Summer Pils - Saint Arnold Brewing Co. - Munich-Style Helles

Look at all that gold huh!? Newbies like Community Beer Co. out of Dallas bringing home the gold for their Public Ale ESB makes me very proud to be living in Dallas right now. I'm surprised they didn't get anything for their Mosaic IPA though, easily their best in my opinion. Pinthouse Pizza isn't even a year old and they're already winning medals. Another medal for the cool cats over at Austin Beerworks sporting their glamorous (dare I say sexy?) jumpsuits.

The standout for me, however, was the legendary Austin based Whip in store, recently established brewpub, winning a gold medal for their Bitterama under the name 'Namaste Brewing at the Whip in.' Namaste that Dogfish!

Once the session was done, I was famished and needed substance. There was only one place that could properly deliver for me and that was the famous Euclid Hall, a popular gastropub that reminded me of Meddlesome Moth with its delivery of quality food and quality craft beer. An hour and half wait gave us ample time to walk over to Wynkoop Brewing brewpub (brewpub #1) for some more beer. Wynkoop is a brewpub institution for Denver so I was anxious to try their beer. I got a flight including their delicious Belgian IPA and two others.

Onto Euclid Hall with Daniel for an epic pig out including the most delicious dinosaur sized bone marrow I've ever had. I could have eaten that meat jelly, with an intense beef flavor, fresh thyme and demi glace, all night. In fact, I should have taken the leftover bone home for a midnight snack. Honestly, I didn't even care about the beer here. I had some barleywine that really caught up to me eventually, but really it was all about the pig out including oysters, mussels, pig ears and poutin. Easily one of the better meals I've had in awhile. Kudos to you Euclid Hall.

At this point, we had no idea where Carlos was so Daniel and I decided to walk over to Prost Brewing (brewpub #2). This is where the night really took off. Prost was about 1.5 miles away so we walked off our big ass meal. To our surprise, the folks from Austin Beerworks (sporting their gold medal) and Rogness Brewing were there. The night became quite foggy after liters of beer were ordered, but I do know the guys from Infamous Brewing eventually came and hung out, as well as Davis Tucker from NXNW. We had a blast hanging out with everyone (Will of ABW was as funny as I've ever seen him) but of course the night was young and Denver Beer Co. (brewpub #3) was a short walk away. Honestly, at this point, I don't remember much. Daniel said I drank a beer here so I'll take his word for it.

After brewpub #3, it was time to go to yet another place, the Cheeky Monk. When we got there, I decided to go home since I was about to pass out at the table. I left Daniel high and dry to finish off a 22 oz bomber of some vintage beer to himself. The next thing I remember is waking up to Carlos yelling at Daniel in our room. Supposedly Daniel had passed out under the bed looking for an outlet for his phone charger. Classic.

The next morning was a hangover of epic proportions, and I had a plane to catch. Daniel and Carlos capped off the day at a couple more brewpubs (read their adventures soon!) before their plane took off. Thank you GABF for such a wonderful time. In the immortal words of Arnold Schwarzenegger: I'll be back.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

a weekend at gabf - day 1

The Stay Hoppy Team
By Matt Abendschein

It's been almost two weeks since GABF and I can honestly say I don't think I have fully recovered. No, not from the copious amounts of delicious craft beer, but from the high. There was an amazing energy during that weekend that can not be described. There's just something about thousands of people gathering together for one common interest, but it's even better when that common interest is craft beer. There's already something intrinsically communal to beer, but give it a mountainous backdrop in a city with some amazing food and it becomes magical.

Day 1

Upon arrival, Carlos and I checked into our four star hostel. A glitch in their check-in process delayed us from actually seeing our room so we ditched our luggage with the front desk and proceeded to the GABF media luncheon which just happened to be on the 38th floor of the Grand Hyatt Hotel in their Pinnacle Room. My first official GABF beer was a Gooseberry Gose from Fitger's Brewhouse out of Duluth, MN. While the beer did not actually have any gooseberry in it, it was still a deliciously refreshing beer and a damn good one to start off with.

Beer with a view
Luncheon Menu

After a couple of those and some quick mingling with Bitch Beer and An Avenue, we proceeded into the dining hall for a spectacular meal paired with some even more amazing craft beer and a quick talk from the legendary Charlie Papazion.

Media Luncheon Featured Breweries

Charlie Papazion

Everything was delicious, but the standouts for me were the Blue Mountain Local Species, a Belgian strong pale, with the short rib and both the Logdson Seizoen Bretta, a farmhouse ale with brett, and Elysian The Great Pumpkin, an imperial pumpkin, with the pumpkin mousse cake. The Seizoen Bretta and that pumpkin mousse cake should be on a menu somewhere, it was quite the mind blowing pairing. Unfortunately, Daniel did not get to come to the media luncheon with Carlos and me as his plane didn't land in time. However, he did get to check into the hostel before us and he got to see our room. To our surprise, we got a text that read just two words:

'Holy shit.'

It's a good thing we weren't going to be spending much time there!

After the media luncheon, Carlos and I were going to meet Daniel at a GABF favorite hangout, the Falling Rock Taphouse. However, on the way there, we made a quick detour to The Beerliner bus which was of course offering free Texas craft beer thanks to Tony Drewery (@beerpedeler). When we got there, Tony offered us some cans for Shotgun Friday, a tradition of shotgunning a beer or two on Friday led by none other than Tony. What a sweet sweet welcoming that was! Once the cans were demolished, Peticolas was on its last keg and Community was right behind them so we of course endulged in free Texas craft beer for a bit while Daniel finally met up with us.

After a couple more beers from Community, we headed off to Falling Rock Tap House just a block up the road. The place was packed full of people so getting a beer was about as quick as Droopy telling a story. Here, I enjoyed a Seven Day Sour from Trinity Brewing Co., a wonderfully dank and earthy sour that would have paired amazingly with some stinky French cheese.

The hour was finally approaching us. The hour in which a hoard of beer nerds flock to booths full of craft beer like dwarves flock to jewels. It's an amazing sight.

It's quite funny actually how much the GABF sessions reminded me of Las Vegas. Not the glitz and glamour, but the sounds. If you've been to Vegas, you know there are two distinct sounds: the slot machines and paper hitting hands (the guys handing out porno ads on the strip). Well, GABF is kind of like that. There are two very distinct sounds to GABF as well: the ocean (being inside, the acoustics made the whole place sound like an ocean) and people yelling 'OHHHHH!' after the dropping of a sampling cup. You'd be surprised how many times this happens but after about the 100th time it began to drive me crazy. Hold onto your freaking cups people! Someone even tried to bat mine out of my hand just for the 'OHHHHH!' reaction but to their surprise I always have a death grip on my beer cup. Joke's on you.

Anyway, the actual GABF sessions were surprisingly a lot of fun. I was skeptical, I'm not going to lie. I thought it would be a little, well, boring to just go booth to booth trying different beers. However, a combination of great entertainment via drunkards, great beer, great people and great friends, the sessions were a blast. It was damn near impossible to keep track of all the beer we drank, especially when we kept losing Daniel (we seriously needed a leash on this one).

See why?

Standouts for me at the actual GABF sessions:
New Glarus Serendipity
Lost Abbey Duck Duck Gooze
New Holland Dragon's Milk (and Reserve w/ peppers)
Anything from Jolly Pumpkin
Almanac Dogpatch Sour
All of the Texas beers of course!

If you can't tell, I gravitated towards sours this trip.

After the session ended, another trip to the Beerliner was in order with Hops & Grain now pouring. At this point, I really don't recall what I drank, but I do know I ended the night early at midnight by going back to the hostel while Daniel and Carlos went on to another bar (read their stories coming soon).

Day 2 is full of food, more beer (brewpubs!) and peeps passing out under beds. Read more tomorrow!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

meddlesome moth dealer's choice dinner #2 - oct 20 & oct 21

The Moth is having another beer dinner, and if you've never been to one before (Tutored Beer Dinner Recap: then this is your chance.

The Dealer's Choice Beer Dinner will be held on both Sunday and Monday (Oct 20 & Oct 21) at 6pm for $65. 

There will be beer.
There will be food.
There will be blood. No, no blood. No milkshakes either, so I won't drink 'em up.


Prairie Artisan 'Merica
Malpeque Pair:
Half shell, 'Merica mignonette,
Fried, celeriac remoulade

Jester King Viking Metal
Sweet Gem wedge, crispy house guanciale, spiced buttermilk vinaigrette

Hitachino Nest Ginger Brew
Shrimp Pad Thai, crushed cashew, ginger jelly

Saint Arnold Bishop's Barrel #2
Seared Texas quail, salsify mash, cherry agrodolce

Ranger Creek Small Batch #5
Hickory Hanger, Homestead grits, BBQ onions, Bourbon bearnaise

Oskar Blues G'Knight aged in Chardonnay Barrels
Spotted Dick: toffee pudding, chardonnay raisins, malt caramel

Jester King Atrial Rubicite
Dark Ass chocolate mousse, malt tuile, pickled raspberries

Thursday, October 10, 2013

meddlesome moth tutored beer dinner with stephen beaumont

Menus like the one above are a dime a dozen. Many places are now taking beer and food seriously (as they should), but very few take it as seriously as Meddlesome Moth. This was evidenced by the Tutored Beer Dinner held on October 7 with none other than Stephen Beaumont, author of The World Atlas of Beer. This beautiful book gave readers a look into countries other than their own to envision the vast culture of beer and the growing interest in craft beer all around the world. Pick it up...I dare you to put it down.

The dinner started off with a meet and greet and a glass of Saison Dupont, you know, to loosen you up a bit before the feast. As Stephen noted, Saison Dupont is the perfect 'appetite stimulant.' And as Tim Webb once stated (as noted by Stephen), 'There is no best beer in the world. But if there was, it'd be Saison Dupont.' It's true. Its unbelievably fruity effervescence and dry finish leaves your palate craving something more and something salty. 

First Course: Little Neck Clams with Barley Miso
Pairing: Hitachino Nest Ancient Nipponia - Imperial Pils
Thoughts: Sweet aromas of both were a nice compliment, but the beer's flavors were very soft and subdued compared with the dish. Still, both tasted amazing on their own.

Second Course: Veal Sweetbread with Black Truffle and Scotch Cream 
Pairing: Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Weizen - Smoked Wheat Beer
Thoughts: This was my second favorite pairing of the night. Somehow, the sweetbread softened the smokiness and fruitiness of the beer. This pairing was decadence at its best. Oh, and that little pastry with salt and cracked black pepper? Bag that shit and sell it in the stores!

Third Course: Crispy Chicken with Candied Citrus
Pairing: Baladin Nora - Traditional Ale/Spiced Ale
Thoughts: Best pairing of the night (and everyone would agree with me on this one). This Italian ale had so much complexity with an intense pepperiness even Franklin BBQ would be jealous of. The candied citrus and the pepperiness went perfectly together while the citrus mellowed the pepper. But then, out of nowhere, maybe 15 seconds after eating, the flavors of the beer started coming back as if you just drank it. Amazing!

Note: I was slightly disappointed sitting at the head of the table with Stephen for this course. This prevented me from carnivorously devouring my chicken like a caveman. Typically I'm quarantined as to not embarrass or disturb the people around me.

Fourth Course: Roast Curried Goat
Pairing: Meantime IPA - English India Pale Ale
Thoughts: Meh. There was too little spice to the goat to stand up to the intense hoppiness.

Fifth Course: Caramom Melba Toast with Pear Butter and Warm Raclette
Pairing: Moa Brewing St Josephs Tripel - Tripel
Thoughts: The flavors of the pear butter and the tripel were a match made in heaven with its similar fruity pear aroma and flavor. While the stinky cheese and the tripel definitely paired together, I would say the pairing was more interesting than enjoyable. The two together brought this intense pungent flavor that didn't taste all that great.

Sixth Course: Indian Pudding with Malt Cracklings and Cream
Pairing: Dogfish Palo Santo Marron
Thoughts: Seriously, is there a better beverage to pair with dessert than beer? No. I say again. No. 

Not only were we served great food with great beer, we were tutored through the whole thing with funny anecdotes and explanations from Stephen. His knowledge of beer was practically personified as he was explaining each beer, leaving you even more excited to eat and drink with him. I was fortunate enough to sit with him and it was an absolute pleasure. I loved his stories of his various travels around the world and how the beer culture is changing in each country. He was very genuine and loved listening to other people's thoughts on beer as well.

If you get a chance to attend a Tutored Beer Dinner at Meddlesome Moth, I highly recommend it. The food is absolutely top notch and the beer speaks for itself. Bravo! Encore!