July 20, 2008

Como se dice "I ate too much but too much was delicious?"

Last night I ventured to Iron Hill West Chester for a Mexican Beer Dinner.
I had my "one more bite" fourteen times. Left feeling comatose, certainly, but very impressed as well. Iron Hill will be doing Seasonal beer dinners throughout the year...stay tuned.

Some notables....

*though Cannibal was an assertive beer to commence with- the tropical fruit notes of the beer were complimented by the mango and papaya in the ceviche.

*The German Pilsner helped wash away the creaminess of the cheesy grits in the tamale. I loved the tamale. Pork! Corn! Grits! what's not to love.

*Lance was especially excited about the pairing, planning on the earthiness of the saison to complement the earthiness of the woodland mushrooms. I went back and forth on this. But by the end of the dish- I appreciated the pairing. Lance had noted that after taking a bite of the Snapper, the Saison snapped out a bit more. In this course, the dish enhanced the flavor of the beer. The snapper was marinated in serrano...It had a nice pinch of heat to it.

*I really enjoyed this fourth course. Mole dishes always entice me on menus, but I never order them. Here I luckily had no choice. I asked chef dan to list the ingredients thinking I could recreate it in my own kitchen...but he lost me at ingredient 13.

*At this point the cliche food coma enters stage left. But I have to have a few bites of the Chocolate Chipotle Cake. Perfectly paired with the Baltic Porter, the intensity of the beer was calmed down a bit as the chipotle of the cake tickled your throat. Very nice marriage.

Feast your ojos on this...

First Course

Ceviche Playero

Rock crab, scallops, honey, manila mango, papaya, pineapple, jicama, pasilla chiles, grapefruit, lime and plantain tostadas

Paired with

The Cannibal

Strong Belgian Golden Ale. Light bodied but complex and high in alcohol with notes of tropical fruit and spice from the unique yeast strain used in this brew. 2005 GABF gold medal, 2006 World Beer Cup silver medal

Second Course

Roasted Pork Tamale…. Dan’s way

Sweet corn, cilantro and cheesy grits

Paired with

German Pilsner

Dry crisp German lager loaded with continental hops

Third Course

Pescado con Hongos Crema (fish dish)

Serrano marinated woodland mushroom-poblano cream, rustic smashed potatoes and grilled green beans

Paired with


Belgian Farmhouse Ale, dry and spicy with earthy undertones

Fourth Course

Pato en Clemole Castellano

Grilled-roasted, red chilled rubbed duck breast, mole of ancho and pasilla chiles, pecan and hazelnuts with black beans, braised greens and crispy onions

Paired with

Black and Tan (Ironbound and Porter)

Roasted and chocolate notes marry with the bright character of American hops


Chocolate Chipotle Cake with cajeta sauce

Paired with

Baltic Porter

Dark sweet lager with chocolate and mild roasted notes followed by a warming alcohol character

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