March 28, 2013
Sam Adams Beer Pairing Dinner at Final Cut Steakhouse
Last week I had the honor of being invited to a Sam Adams Beer Pairing Dinner at Final Cut Steakhouse in Hollywood Casino. Our first time there wasn't the best, but acceptable.
This time though. My interactions with Madeline (who invited us by email to the event) were pleasant. When we arrived they were so friendly and took us back to the Sam Adams event area, where we were greeted by our on-site contact Jerry. Great service already, off to a good start.
We also were given a Sam Adams glass with their Boston Lager upon entering. It was a nice balance of sweet and a tad spicy with a smooth finish.
First up, Sam Adams Summer Ale paired with Final Cut Steakhouse's Lobster Grinder with Battered Asparagus Fries. The fries were atop some kind of sauce for dipping, it tasted like hollandaise but I'm not sure. All I know is that is was magical and I never wanted it to end. The rolls were perfectly golden and a bit toasted, and those huge chunks of lobster. I can't. The Summer Ale was also tasty, with a lemony and tad spicy flavor to it.
Up next, Olive Oil Poached Halibut with Cherrystone Clam Chowder paired with Sam Adams Double Agent IPL. Well now I know I love halibut! It was very light but not that fishy taste at all. I love the lemon and garlic flavors and the clam chowder with the halibut, and those little potatoes and peas. Another perfect dish. And so fancy! The IPL was too bitter for my taste, and I'm not a fan of grapefruit. That's one reason why I'm not always drawn to craft beers because they can be bitter. So I'd pass on the IPL personally. But anytime I see halibut on a menu these days I'm going to be tempted to order it if it's going to be as good as this beauty.
At this point I started to lose some lighting as it started getting dark out so sorry for blurry and dim pics. The 3rd course featured a Crispy Pork Belly with Blackberry Sauce, paired with Sam Adams New World Tripel. I was hesitant about this dish but discovered that I am OBSESSED with pork belly. This was PJ's least favorite course, however. He thought it was too crispy and too salty. In other words, he's crazy. I loved the crisp layer of the pork belly contrasting the tender pork layers. And I didn't think it was too salty at all. I think the sweetness of the blackberry sauce helped cut down on the saltiness for me. I love sweet and salty mixes so this really hit the spot. I'm not sure what the yellow sauce was but everything together was heaven in my mouth. I didn't want this course to end either! I'll be on the lookout for Pork Belly dishes everytime I go out to eat now too because this was THAT good to me. I also LOVED the New World Tripel. It was sweet like I like my beer... I didn't taste mango or pineapple per say but I did love the sweetness of it. I'd buy this in a heartbeat, but it's not for sale in stores yet. I felt special being one of the first people to try this special special beer. I'll be buying it as soon as it hits stores! Of course one of my favorite beers was the 10% ABV :)
And yes I took notes :) Only me, only me.
On to the 4th course.... Smoked Duck Breast, Sweet Potato Puree, and Tasman Red Gastrique, paired with Sam Adams Tasman Red. PJ loved the duck dish, it was my least favorite however. It wasn't bad, just didn't compare to the other dishes in my opinion. I didn't like the Tasman Red either as it was too bitter and again, had too much of that grapefruit taste.
After 4 courses and samples of beer, I was a bit full. But I had to make room for the 5th and final course, Belgian Doughnuts with Coffee Caramel and a Stout Frappe, paired with Sam Adams 13th Hour Stout. I only ate a few bites of the Belgian Doughnut and it was pretty good, but not amazing. I LOVED the Stout Frappe though. It was sweet and it was oh so good. The 13th Hour Stout was also one of my favorites. I didn't taste the coffee or chocolate at all, and PJ didn't either which was good because he doesn't like coffee and thought he wouldn't like this beer but we both thoroughly did. I tasted a hint of cherry too. And it's 9% ABV. I'll be adding this to my beer repertoire purchases for sure.
They also served a sample of my FAVORITE beer right now, Angry Orchard. It is an apple-flavored hard cider that I discovered at last year's Oktoberfest. Love the sweet and sour balance. I had no idea they were affiliated with Sam Adams and I've been drinking it every weekend for I don't even know how long! So it was a treat to see that offered on the sample menu. I've tried the Crisp Apple, Apple Ginger, and Elderflower and loved them all!
And they gave us each one of those Sam Adams glasses to take home with us.
Can I just say that I want to do this like every week? The food was amazing, they treated us like kings and queens, and I found a couple new craft beers that I can't wait to buy regularly once they become available to the public. I felt so special being one of the few to try some of the beers before everyone else. Final Cut and Sam Adams, we were honored to be your guests for this amazing event and you can invite us back anytime! It was one of the best nights I've had in awhile :) Besides losing $20 in the casino before dinner. I knew we shouldn't have stopped in there!
Peace, and bacon grease!