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Friday, March 7, 2014

Razor clams and wine barrel-aged brews rocked Closed for Business

Posted by Eric Doksa on Fri, Mar 7, 2014 at 1:20 PM

Closed for Business may not be the newest and most glamorous place in town, but it's certainly a place that knows how to put on one helluva beer dinner. This year, they outdid themselves by bringing in President and co-founder of Stone Brewing Company, Steve Wagner. Stone Brewing Company has always been known for making big, bold brews, and Steve brought a lineup of rare treats that reconfirmed why Stone is the highest rated breweries in the world.

click to enlarge c4b_stone1.jpg

New to the Stone lineup is the Go To IPA, which is fruity and piney with a hop presence that makes you wonder how it's only 4.5% a.b.v. Chefs Italo Marino and Leila Schardt paired the hoppy wonder with razor clams dressed with fermented chiles, pickled green onion, and preserved lime coulis. 

The beer of the night was the Cali-Belgique aged in white wine barrels — an IPA brewed with Belgian yeast that inherited a fruit forward funk from the barrels that was paired with mackerel and a hearty grit cake and bacon jus.

Marino and Schardt certainly weren't afraid to go all out, with a menu filled with sweetbreads, smoked hearts, and bone marrow. The spice in the cotechino (Italian sausage) fared well with the 2012 Vertical Epic that had notes of ginger and cardamom.

click to enlarge The picture doesn't do this dish justice.
  • The picture doesn't do this dish justice.

But it was the dessert the stole the show: a foie gras panna cotta with pickled cherries, bits of caramel pretzels, and mint paired with a mint chocolate imperial stout. We expected the dish to be overly sweet, but it wasn't. The balanced pairing turned out to be the perfect ending to an incredible meal. Closed for Business and Stone Brewing Company put on a beer dinner that people will be talking about for a while. At least until next year.




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