Zi Char + Craft Beers
An absolutely ace experience pairing craft beers with zi char at the famous Two Chefs Eating Place in Commonwealth. We’d separately cased a bit of dinner there a week ago, consisting of the popular butter pork ribs and mushroom tofu:
i was informed that it would be as insulting to a brewer as to a vintner to swig such beers from the bottle – they need to be poured out, swirled, and appreciated. And it was worth it. (The uncle at a neighbouring table saw our happiness, looked meaningfully at his young female companion, retrieved a large bottle of Johnny Walker from a briefcase, and motioned for ice.)
La Trappist Dubbel made a decent stand against the stir-fried beef – caramel notes with wok hei; Lindeman‘s Kriek – fresh black cherries were added to a lambic (spontaneously fermented with wild yeast) to give a brew that was too sweet with distractingly strong cherry pit flavour (served too warm?), but fantastic when paired with the sweet-ish kung pow chicken;
the universal partner Palm amber ale is described by its brewer as being a sociable beer for everyday, everyone. It went decently with the fluffy omelette and fried rice, and was a good match for the butter pork ribs – the slight honey character enhancing the dairy sweetness of the milk powder that covered the meat while the acidity cut through the double sweetness;
the Satan Gold pale ale – fried yam partnership was, to me, the weakest of the night. Cowed by the strong flavours from the rest of the dishes, it was hard to tell what was going on there;
most enjoyed were: Mikkeller‘s Beer Geek Breakfast x coffee pork ribs; and Mikkeller‘s Dim Sum Beer x curry fish head. Mikkeller is a portmanteau of the names of two homebrewers turned gipsy brewers – they wander from brewery to brewery to make their beer. The Beer Geek Breakfast stout had a lively taste of roasted coffee beans which reinforced the coffee pork ribs (and when taken with the butter pork ribs, made them taste like the coffee ones). Good also with a full English breakfast perhaps? The Dim Sum Beer was supposed to have lemongrass and coriander notes but this was lost in avalanche of flavours in the curry fish head; instead it cheerfully provided a beautifully cool counterpoint to the curry. Very nice indeed.
Will be looking at the rest of Mikkeller’s production with great interest.
We had interesting dynamics in a discussion on the Gospel of Mark yesterday as well: starkly contrasting worldviews of someone headed for an Ivy League university probably on scholarship with the world as her oyster, and another who’s spent time on the wrong side of prison walls. Regardless of social standing though, Jesus’ demand is still the same: realise that you are a sinner, repent of your sins, and believe the good news that though you cannot save yourselves from the consequences of your sin, Jesus can.