Friday, March 29, 2013

Beer & Food: A (Mostly) Visual Post

All week long, I've been trying to come up with a post that would do justice to the Ottawa Beer TAP Society dinner that was held last Monday at the Copper Pot Café, on Bronson Avenue.

I wanted to talk about how the host, J.P. Fournier (of National Capital Craft Beer Week and WinterBrewed), offered some of his lovely beer and had it paired with some truly marvelous food, and how it was great to learn that this was going to be the last of such dinners before J.P. went professional, starting Turtle Island Brewing Company in the next month or so. This has been a dream of J.P.'s for many years, and I'm thrilled to be a witness to that dream coming to fruition.

I can't wait to be there for Turtle Island Brewing's grand opening. You can expect a big post then. (And, J.P., I want a private tour. Think you can talk to someone to make that happen?)

I also wanted to talk about the great people I met at the OBTS dinner, such as some of my Twitter friends, Darrel from West End Chiles (forgive me if I misspelled your name, but it wasn't on your business card or on your Web site), food critic and blogger for the Ottawa Citizen, Ron Eade, and the head brewer for Ottawa's Mill Street Brew Pub, Adam Rader. There were lots of beer lovers at the dinner, ranging from newbies to experts in the field.

I'm somewhere closer to the former.

I wanted to go into great depth in describing the dishes and the beers, offering my opinion on each course, but I thought that it might drag on. Sort of like how this supposedly visual post is not so visual.

Let me just say that every dish was a masterpiece. I was even eating things that I don't generally like, such as mushrooms (I don't eat fungus) and beets. My favourite dish of the lot was the maple-pepper haddock fillet with snow pea tips, baby bok choy, and dumplings in a miso broth. The pairing was with my favourite beer of the evening, J.P.'s dark honey brown ale.

You'd better be brewing that one at Turtle Island, my friend!

I also loved the Black IPA. I would have loved to spend more time with it but by that late part of the evening, my taste buds were tired.

Here are the highlights of the dinner.

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