Media tastings are not reviews, but they are a great way for me to learn more about full menu offerings, dish updates, and special events from our local restaurants to share with readers. At this point, media tasting invitations are being accepted from any local restaurant who would like coverage on Feasting Fort Collins – no matter if they’ve been previously reviewed or not.
Media tasting photos are uploaded on Feasting Fort Collins Instagram during (or shortly after) the event, so be sure to follow me on there for the sneak peek before it hits the site.
The Moot House has been organizing regular beer pairing dinners with various breweries for years. In fact, these pairing dinners are where they can expand their creative culinary skills much more than they do with their regular dinner service, and where dining enthusiasts often have an opportunity to explore craft beer beyond what’s brewed in Colorado.
In short, if you want to eat something unique and innovative, go to a pairing dinner. Any pairing dinner.
Last week the Moot House hosted a beer pairing dinner with Ballast Point Brewing Co. out of San Diego. Ballast Point brought some really interesting beers that haven’t been available in Fort Collins before. I was particularly fond of their Red Velvet on nitro. That was absolutely delicious especially as a dessert pairing. It would have been AMAZING as a beer float, too. And Ballast Point being Ballast Point, their beers brought the party with higher AVBs, to boot.
Chef Jeff Blackwell has always created some next-level menus for pairing events, but I think this one raised the bar even more. “I have no idea what we’re eating. I don’t understand this menu at all. What’s Bhuna Gost? What’s Langosta? Bull’s Blood?! What are we eating?? We need to do some Google Fu research,” seemed to be the common comments from people at the event. I love that. Absolutely love that! The whole point of a pairing dinner is to get out of your comfort zone, eat something you never would order on a regular night out, push your boundaries. Because you know what? You’re on a culinary adventure and you’re just there to enjoy the twists and turns the kitchen takes you through.
And twists and turns, there were! Some dishes were just okay, others were straight up home runs. The best dish of the night (for me, anyway) was the Maple Leaf Duck, “Cascabel” butter, and maytag blue cheese polenta. It was essentially a play on duck confit hot wings. Man alive, it was tasty!
After that, the dessert was a tastebud wowing experience too. While “bull’s blood essence” makes you believe you’re about to participate in some kind of animal sacrifice, it’s really just an heirloom variety of beet, which paired with the beet that was in the Red Velvet beer. Sorry hopeful vampires.
The Moot House hosts beer pairing dinners frequently throughout the year. You can stay on top of what’s coming up by checking out their website and following them on social media.
The six-course tasting dinner in the gallery above consisted of:
First course – Korean fried chicken “oysters,” scallion, guanchong gastrique, hoisin barbecue, paired with Sculpin IPA
Second course – Diver sea scallop, pea shoots, blackberry reduction, fennel essence, on top of pork belly, paired with Blackberry Sour Winch
Third course – Bhuna Gost, Colorado lamb, tap root purée, and mint chutney, paired with Manta Ray Double IPA
Fourth course – Maple leaf duck, “cascabel” butter, maytag blue cheese polenta paired with Bourbon Barrel Aged Tongue Buckler Imperial Red Ale
Fifth course – Spinalis dorsi (aka: ribeye cap), Langosta, chard, Vitellote purée paired with Victory At Sea Imperial Porter with coffee and vanilla
Sixth course – Vanilla bean genoise, white chocolate mousse, Bull’s Blood “essence,” sea salt pistachio sable, paired with Red Velvet Oatmeal Stout