A Book & A Beer – Best Food Writing of 2015

So the book for March is a collection of pieces about food and it is a book that I get every year to catch the pulse of food and what is being written about in the last year.
The Best Food Writing of 2015 has quite a few recipes that I flip right by because I enjoy the commentary and how food affects people.

This year there was a sorta running theme of “not having time to cook and that being OK.” which probably came as a relief to anyone (OK, mostly women) who have to generate a dinner a day if not more for 52 weeks a year. The piece by Tamar Haspel about less complaining struck a nerve with me.

I also was fascinated by Nashville Hot Chicken which I had never heard of up until this year plus the story of bringing non-meat meat-like products to market from El Segundo, California. Another cool piece was At Your Service? By Oliver Strand about “omotenashi” or extra hospitality, as I call it.

To pair with the stories, I would go with some spice accented beers. And I will recommend two from Burnside Brewing.

First would be Spring Rye a pale ale with Ultra hops and Coriander. Next up would be Sweet Heat a heated mix of Apricots and Scotch Bonnet peppers on a base of wheat beer.

For those not near Portland, Saison du Buff from the trio of Victory Brewing, Dogfish Head and Stone would provide the herbal kick that would nicely accent the book.

Breakside + Hop & Vine =

I admit it. I watch the Portland scene with afar with a little jealousy. Not that LA is bad right now, far from it. But I do see beers and events pass by that I would so love to try and attend.

Thankfully, my mom is up there and every once in awhile, she will search out a rare beer for me. Last month she got me Roses on Roses from Fort George and this month, I have asked her to be on the lookout for this Berliner Weisse. And by on the look out, I mean go to Burnside Brewing and/or Hop and Vine to grab a bottle.

Because the southland summer approaches and I need a stock of quenchers to get me through the non-big beer season. And this collaboration between brewer (Burnside) and craft beer shoppe (Hop and Vine) would fit the bill.

Oregon Beer Review # 1 – IPA from Burnside Brewing

The month of March is featuring reviews of Oregon beers that I brought back from one of my semi-regular jaunts to my hometown of Portland and to start, I cracked open an IPA from Burnside Brewing.

Here is what the brewery says about the beer, “Burnside IPA is our flagship brand on our sparkling new 15bbl system. An IPA with plenty of malt body and thoroughly hopped with 6 varieties of the herbaceous perennial. Expect to taste notes of pine & grapefruit in Jason’s first offering.”

Christmas Beer of the Day – Permafrost

The BreweryBurnside
The BeerPermafrost

The Details
“This is Burnside Brewing Co.’s first winter elixir. It’s a big strong ale brewed with 7 different malts and copious amounts of Columbia and Amarillo hops pillowed in the middle to give this warming brew a chewy complex malt body and a unique fruity juicy hoppiness throughout. You wont want to sip this dangerously strong and tasty beer like you should but pound it . 8.3% abv 77.4 IBU”

Gratzer comeback

First I see a Gratzer on the menu at Burnside Brewing in Portland, then I hear of this bottled version from Dr. Fritz Briem…

Here is the description for us newcomers to this revived style: “Grodziskie or Gratzer is a Sour Smoked Wheat Ale that was brewed in the 1900x in East Prussian and dates back to as as the 15th century. It was named after the Polish town of Grodzisk Wielkopolski or Gratz in German. Our historic version is brewed according to the German Purity Law with air-dried barley malt and beech smoked wheat malt and hopped with Perle and Saaz. A sour mash is created using the old and forgotten technique called “Digerieren.” Finally a three month aging and maturation process creates a complex sour, smoky and heavily hopped wheat ale.”