Friday, May 11, 2007

Belgian Dinner at La Caterina!

Courtesy of Bruisin' Ales:

Bruisin' Ales is partnering with Millennium Beverage, Global Beer Network, and Asheville restaurant La Caterina Trattoria for an exciting culinary extravaganza -- a six course Italian menu. This special beer dinner will be paired with a six-beer Belgian beer line-up with commentary by Johnny Fincioen, president of Global Beer Network.

Cost is $45/per person including tax and gratuity.

For reservations, please call La Caterina Trattoria at 828-254-1148.

More details at our event calendar:

CARCIOFI Artichoke Heart, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Shaved Parmigiano Reggiano


FRITTO MISTO Fried Shrimp, Monkfish, Cauliflower, Zucchini, Garlic-Lemon Ailoi

VEGETARIAN Fried Cauliflower, Zucchini, Garlic-Lemon Ailoi

Flemish IPA Triple

INSALATA BELANZONE Sweet Sicilian & Spicy Calabrese Sausage, Olive Oil poached New Potatoes, Vinegar, Peppers, Onions

VEGETARIAN Olive Oil poached New Potatoes, Vinegar, Peppers, Onions

Poperings Hommel Ale

COLLO DI MAIALE Pork Neck Bones & Lentils, Sweet Potato Gnocchi

VEGETARIAN Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Grated Romano

Kapittel Abt

MANZO ARROSTO Smoked, slow roasted American Kobe Beef Roast, Roasted Tomato, Shoestring Potatoes

VEGETARIAN PASTA ALLA NORMA Tossed with Roasted Eggplant, Roasted
Tomato, Basil and cheese

Gulden Draak Triple Dark

ZEPPOLI Sicilian fried Doughnut Balls, Lavender Honey

Cherish Kriek Lambic


At $45/person this is a steal. For more information see the Bruisin' Ales blog.

Bon appetite!

Homeless man breaks into bar

From WLOS: a homeless man broke into a Pennsylvania bar, cooked himself a few burgers and had some beer to wash them all down. Police arrested him after he tried to re-enter the scene of the crime.

With bail set at $50k and given his homeless status, it's doubtful if he'll be doing it again soon.

Full story here.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Weyerbacher Double Simcoe IPA

Simcoe, is a registered trademark of Select Botanicals Group, is new hybrid hop variety similar to Cascade. It's all the rage in American craft brewing, due to its powerful, citrusy aroma and astringent bitterness. So when I saw this beer as the monthly special at Bruisin' Ales I jumped to buy a 22 oz. bottle. Having had other brews from Weyerbacher I knew I was in for a treat.

The beer poured with a rich, foamy head that filled half the imperial pint glass despite my gentle pour. It took a few minutes to subside, which I occupied by noshing on some exellent 'za from Digable Pizza of West Asheville. If you haven't tried this West Asheville pizza joint, go there now.

Back to the beer. The nose was redolent of ruby red grapefruit, a citrus I absolutely love, and the color was a medium, rich reddish-gold. In case it's not obvious from the above paragraph, the brew is very well carbonated. The initial sip was very smooth, with an alcoholic bite coupled with powerful hop bitterness. Registering 9 % ABV, and with the citrus hoppiness, this beer is heaven in a pint glass. A beer worth sharing and savoring.

South Carolina pops the cap!

On Wednesday, South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford signed legislation raising SC's legal alcohol level in beer to 14% by weight (that's 17.5% by volume, placing the new limit a full 2.5% above that of North Carolina). This is great news for brewers and beer drinkers in the Palmetto State, many of whom have been making regular trips to North Carolina and Georgia to obtain speciality beer. Many of us in Asheville recall the hassle of travelling to Georgia and Tennessee to get select beers prior to NC's repeal in 2005 of similar arcane legislation. With the latest lifting of these nonsensical laws, only three states still impose arbitrary limits on beer alcohol levels: Alabama, Mississippi, and West Virginia.

It will be awhile before the higher-alcohol beers begin showing up on SC shelves, as distributors must go through a permitting process. But please join me in raising a glass to the folks at who made this happen.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Saturday Belgian tasting at Asheville Wine Market

I chanced to meet Mark Yonce of Duvel Moortgat at Jack of the Wood a few weeks ago. He'll be pouring samples of some fine beers at the Asheville Wine Market this Saturday.

From the AWM e-newsletter:

Saturday May 5th., 2007

Free Tasting; 1 to 4pm. Belgian Beers-the Champagnes of the Beer World! Join Mark Yonce of Duvel Moorgat, USA at the AWM Tasting Bar.

Belgian beer varies from the popular pale lager to the esoteric appeal of lambic beer, Monastic ales, brown ales, doubles and on to triples. Belgian beer-brewing's origins go back to the Middle-Ages, when monasteries began producing beers. Belgian beer production was assisted by the 1919 Belgian "Vandervelde Act", that prohibited the sale of spirits in pubs, inducing the market to produce beers with a higher level of alcohol. The Vandervelde Act was lifted in 1983. Although beer production in Belgium is now dominated by Inbev and Alken Maes, there are approx 125 craft breweries in the country, producing about 500 standard beers for the world's enjoyment. Join us on Saturday as we showcase the following beers:

Ommegang Hennepin A rare Farmhouse Saison Ale- pale, hoppy, crisp, and rustic. It's named after Father Louis hennepin, A Belgian missionary who was the first European to visit and describe Niagra Falls.$5.99/750ml

Duvel Belgian Golden Ale Refreshing and golden like a Pilsner but with the flavor, depth and complexity of an ale. Mellow, balanced and beguiling flavor as well as Duvel's intensity and oomph. A world classic$9.49/750ml or $13.49/4pack 11.20oz.

Maredsous 10 Tripel Abbey Ale brewed according to traditional methods of the Benedictine Monks of Maredsous. Light golden in color, refreshing and sneaky with its power. Cellar matured!$7.49/750ml

Maredsous 8 Dark Brune Abbey Ale brewed according to traditional methods of the Benedictine Monks of Maredsous. Dark brown color, nice malty nose, spices and even a hint of smoke in this intriguing brew.$6.99/750ml

Rodenbach Grand Cru Flemish Sour Ale aged in oak casks for 18 months. The unique and refreshing sourness is balanced beautifully by the hint of oaky sweetness. $8.99/750ml

Rodenbach Redbach Soothingly sweet, wickedly sour, Redbach is a tantalizing blend of Rodenbach Flemish Sour Ale and 100% natural cherry juice.$8.99/4 pack 11.2 oz.

Special tasting prices: 10% off the bottle and 15% off by the case, mix or match, unless already discounted via sale or promotion!