First off, I just noticed this is post #300 for me. The posts have been kind of sparse as of late, but it is nice to reach a little bit of a milestone like that.
Kristy and I just returned for the North End and their Holiday Beer Dinner. It was a five course meal, with each course paired with a holiday beer. The menu was as follows:
1. Southern Tier Old Man Winter Ale w/ Homemade Pretzel with Dipping Sauces (a warm blue cheese sauce and a grainy mustard)
2. Anchor Christmas Ale 2008 w/ Shrimp Bisque
3. Winter Solstice Seasonal Ale w/ Venison, Beef, Duck Carpaccio
4. Troegs Mad Elf w/ Pork Medallions with Stuffing and Waldorf Salad
5. Bell’s Winter White Ale w/ Pumpkin Creme Brulee
The food was all excellent with the highlights being the delicious Shrimp Bisque, which was served in a clear mug, and the Pumpkin Creme Brulee was amazing. It was like a soft, creamy pumpkin pie. As far as the beers, I enjoyed them all. I think my top was the Mad Elf, a very high ABV offering that is like a belgian strong dark ale, which I had sampled once before and am now definitely a fan (and I found out Troegs, although from nearby PA, is just now started to be distributed in NE Ohio). I also really enjoyed the Winter Solstice Seasonal Ale, an amber spiced winter ale from CA.
Overall it was a really fun event, sitting around with a bunch of beer snobs in a communal sort of environment (we shared a table with some strangers which actually worked out nicely), with good service and a great, knowledgeable host. I believe that I heard they plan to hold another event like this in January, which I will definitely be attending.