One of our brewers here at Boundary Bay Brewery has a lovely wife who hails from The Heartland. His Mother-In-Law came to visit recently and we sent a few bottles of our Barley Wine back to Iowa with her and asked her to take it to Jay Wilson, a fellow beer blogger whom you may be familiar with through his blog Brewvana or his recent side project: Diary of a Part-Time Monk.
Old Bounder, our Barley Wine brought home a 2011 Gold Medal from the North American Beer Awards and we wanted to share some with our pal back in Iowa. The beer ended up on the Brewvana blog where Jay recommended pairing it with a Midwestern classic: Beanie Weenies. Seriously! Check out the whole article here where he describes why the combination works so well.
Now, being a Northwest brewery, we don’t get much call for dishes like Beanie Weenies. And I’m not sure we’d have ever come up with this beer and food pairing, but that’s what is so cool about craft beer. It can work in a multitude of ways. Recently, at one of our Brewmaster’s Dinners out at Semiahmoo Resort, our Old Bounder took the high road and was paired with Fig Tart with chèvre filling in a walnut crust with caramelized figs and grand marnier. And we’ve even made our own gelato, here at the brewery, with our Old Bounder…but those are classic barley wine pairings.
Barley wine has strong flavors of it’s own and easily overpowers most main dishes. It’s common to see it matched up with strong cheese or dessert. Think of it more like port – a great after dinner drink on it’s own, wonderful with stilton and walnuts or with something rich and sweet like chocolate torte. And, apparently, it’s great when paired with fatty dishes that make you want to scrape your palate clean (Jay’s words, not mine!).
So we wondered, what other regionally specific classic flavors are out there that would pair well with our Old Bounder? Tell us which dishes are classic flavors for you and how the big, bold flavors of Barley Wine compliment them. We’d love recipes too, if you feel like sharing! Cheers.