Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Meet The Brewers at the Zomato Meetup!

Last night, I was invited to the monthly meetup hosted by Zomato and it really was an amazing evening! It was held at Beerhouse on Long Street and we got the opportunity to enjoy the Meet The Brewers evenings that Beerhouse hosts. These evenings involve various brewers that are invited to chat to those who attend about the brewing process, their individual brewery and answer any questions we might have. On top of that, the beer from the specific brewery of the night is paired with various foods prepared by the unbelievable chef at Beerhouse, Roy MacAskill.

For those who aren't sure of who or what Zomato is, I'd be happy to blow your mind! Zomato is an app that lists various restaurants and eateries in your city and you can find whatever restaurant you feel like, rate each venue and write your own review on what your experience was like. It's a fantastic little app that I honestly can't live without now! Whenever I go to a new restaurant now, I immediately look for it on Zomato and take loads of pictures and write tons of reviews! It's tons of fun!

Last night's Meet The Brewers was about Ceder Brew which is a lady-run brewery in the Cederberg - GIRL POWER! Their beers are amazing and they were paired with 5 dishes that were UNBELIEVABLY delicious!

First up was the Sandfish Weiss beer and this was paired with a chilled cucumber & basil soup and shrimp ceviche. This paired really well and I found that the beer brought out the shrimp taste in the soup. 

Next came the Catfish Ale and this was paired with a Smoked Snoek Rarebit, dill and citrus beurre blanc. Man alive, was this dish delicious!! I'm a big fish person so when I tasted this, I honestly think I went to heaven! It was done to perfection and reminded me of cold winters in Cape Town with a hot meal in front of you! I could eat masses of this! I loved this paired with this beer and found that they were both light when enjoyed together. By far, my favourite pairing of the night!

After the ale, we enjoyed a rare roast sirloin. blue cheese & horseradish and a caramelized onion chutney on a little Yorkshire pudding and this was paired with the Chubbyhead stout. I really enjoyed this stout as it wasn't too much as I've found other stouts to be. It worked well with the rare roast sirloin and I thought the caramelized onion would overpower everything, but it didn't. In fact, it worked perfectly and overall was a delicious pairing!

Next we tasted the Cherry Blonde which was paired with a goats cheese & beetroot tart with a green fig syrup and this was my second favourite pairing of the night! The Cherry Blonde was a nice pinkish colour and had a lovely cherry taste which worked well with both the beetroot and figs. The goats cheese was subtle and added a slight saltiness to the dish which brought the whole thing together! Absolutely delish!

Lastly we had the Jan Pampoen paired with a sweetcorn, honey and white chocolate bonbon on a raspberry & cherry ale jelly. For me, the jelly was slightly tasteless but the bonbon was to die for! Not overly sweet and the sweetcorn and honey coating made it divine! The Jan Pampoen was a delicious pumpkin flavour and reminded me autumn. Cliche? Maybe, but a very nice beer!

I thoroughly enjoyed last night but was most impressed with Tania and Melanie Nieuwoudt's story of how everything to do with their brand is done by them personally. From the brewing (all Melanie) to the labelling and marketing (all Tania), everything to do with Ceder Brew is their personal blood, sweat and tears - something that both of them can be extremely proud of! 

Another fun and amazing fact; Ceder Brew has created their own conservation plan. The Clanwilliam Sandfish (which the Sandfish Weiss is named after) is one of 23 identified fish species that is indigenous to the Western Cape. It is, however, threatened by alien fish species, poaching and habitat destruction, and Ceder Brew has therefore committed to creating a fish sanctuary which involves rehabilitating the Kromrivier, re-introducing indigenous fish and removing alien fish species. This initiative blows me away!

Beerhouse is running their Meet The Brewers events once a month for about R150 per person and is well worth attending! It's a great way to learn more about beer, various breweries and to enjoy the indulgence of pairing great beer with mouth-watering food! Do yourself a favour!

Thank you Zomato for this wonderful meetup and thank you to Beerhouse and Ceder Brew for an amazing food and beer evening!

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