Friday, January 27, 2012

Beer on the Darker Side

Old Town Brown Ale
From the words of the maker, Natty Green's Brewing Co, this beer is a traditional, English-style, full-bodied with sweet, toasted malt aroma with a hint of baker's chocolate.  This beer bodes well after a savory meal as a dessert.  It pulls in a BA Score of 84. I believe it deserves a higher score. I got the notes of chocolate and loved the smooth body.

New Belgium 1554
New Belgium is one of my favorite brewers with their Fat Tire and Ranger IPA and now their 1554 Enlightened Black Ale.  It gets an BA score of 87.

The DogFather Imperial Stout
As you can see the head on this pour is very thick.  The rise of the smoky aroma hits you first.  I was pleased with the smooth silky start and finish with notes of chocolate and coffee.  It is slightly sweet but with a light bitterness to counter balance the sweetness.  Rate Beer gives it a overall rating of 98 with high marks for taste and aroma. It gets a BA score of 86.

Wee Heavy-er Scotch Style Ale

From the French Broad Brewing Co., I found it to be very smooth and drinkable. Light to medium body.  I was very pleased and will diffidently buy more.  BA gives it an 80.  RB gives it a 79 overall.  I need to try a few more to see if agree with these ratings.. 

to be continued....

Sunday, January 8, 2012

April's birthday dinner / Second Empires's chef table

Friends-Sprites-Great Food

Dinner at Second Empire in Raleigh - The Chef's Table

First Course:
Sauteed NC Black Grouper (bean/roasted cauliflower ragout, swiss chard, spaghetti squash, mango salsa, roasted apple & horseradish sauce)

Second Course:
Berkshire Farms Pork Belly & Pan Roasted New Bedford Scallop (creamy butternut squash risotto, braised Napa cabbage, spicy haricot verts, rutabaga puree, big boss bad penny brown ale reduction)

The Palate Cleanser:

Third Course: 
Grilled Austrian Lamb Rack (yukon gold potatoes and artichoke hash, creamy celery root, asparagus, ratatouille, spinach, carry jus,)

Fourth Course:
Empire Chocolate Souffle 
Behind the scenes:

Chef Daniel Schurr
Friends Bob and Marie looking over the kitchen staff