"Any time you get the chance to make new friends, talk beer, food and the great state of Maine—and call it a day’s work—well, that’s a good day in our opinion." -Jennifer Scism
Now why would Allagash Brewery—one of the Top 50 Craft Breweries in the U.S. (by sales volume), makers of the acclaimed Allagash White—want to make the trip from Portland to Kittery, ME, only to pair their beer with our dehydrated “backpacking” meals? The Allagash team knows a thing or two about good food, and saw a great opportunity to pair up two local Maine organizations. The result? A dinner none of us will soon forget.
The Beer List:
- Hoppy Table Beer
- Thai Curry – with coconut marinated flank steak
- Mexican Quinoa Bowl – with cilantro-agave marinated shrimp
- Herbed Mushroom Risotto – with chicken thighs, thyme and parsley
- Indian Vegetable Korma – with yogurt-coriander marinated lamb and naan bread
We began dinner with no predetermined pairings, rather an open mind, allowing the beer and food to speak for itself. Good To-Go chef and co-founder, Jennifer Scism, selected four dehydrated meals, for each of which she chose a complimentary protein.
Allagash Brewery has been dedicated to their craft since 1995 and has earned a reputation for creating some of the world’s finest beers. So, it was indeed a treat when Mathew Trogner, creative manager for Allagash, presented each Belgian-inspired beer, explaining the complex flavors behind each one as we took our first sip.
It was difficult at times, in all honesty, as most everything paired well. However, as the evening went on, and the communal plates of food were whittled down, we collectively dialed in the standout pairings. Then drank more beer, of course. Here’s the rundown:
- Complex flavors and subtle heat from the Thai Curry matched beautifully with the hints of coriander and citrus in Hoppy Table Beer.
- Fruit esters and raisin notes in the Black surprisingly made it a complimentary pair with the rustic, earthiness of the Herbed Mushroom Risotto.
- Cacao notes in the mole poblano made the Mexican Quinoa an obvious pairing for the Black, though surprisingly the Saison’s peppery, dry character proved a more satisfying match.
- Indian Vegetable Korma was perfect with the White. It’s spice and citrus character melded perfectly with the Korma’s robust blend of spices—turmeric, cardamom, cinnamon, cumin, etc.
Any time you get the chance to make new friends, talk beer, food and the great state of Maine—and call it a day’s work—well, that’s a good day in our opinion. Cheers.