Last Monday was our “Harvest Ale” evening at Ladies at Ladyface: the Fermentables and Comestibles Education and Tippling Society. Basically, in order to prepare our palates for autumn, we all brought in something “seasonal” to imbibe.
I brought Shipyard’s Smashed Pumpkin, Sierra Nevada’s Northern Hemisphere Harvest (honestly picked it up because it had the word “Harvest” on it) and Shipyard’s Smashed Blueberry – not exactly seasonal, but I’d read about it on Drink, Eat, Travel after Jace Milstead did a write-up and wanted to try it. LOVED IT! It’s a cross between a Porter and Scotch ale, warm and boozy, with a nice aroma of real blueberries wafting off the head, pouring a dark brown-burgundy and rounded out with a blueberry sweetness that rests on your tongue long after you swallow. I grabbed another bottle the next day so I could have it all to myself.
Ladyface had Pliny the Elder on tap, and while we had a few beers waiting to try, I just couldn’t say no to Pliny!
I also feel the need to order the Popcorn Chickpeas while they’re still on the menu. Teeny fried bits of happiness!
My mumsie and I split the sliders – topped with bleu cheese, arugula, balsamic onions and fresh tomatoes. I wish these were full size. Mine was gone far too quickly. As was half of my Pliny (glances suspiciously at mumsie)…
In between the tastings, Cyrena (owner of Ladyface) brought out some crushed grains and hot liquor (When you’re using water for brewing, it’s called liquor. She didn’t bring out hot alcohol) and we mixed them together to observe the color and aroma difference between the individual grains. Mashing in at a table while drinking a Pliny and eating sliders = perfection.
Among the other beers to taste: Dogfish Head Punkin Ale, an IPA homebrew by fellow Lady @ Ladyface: J.J., and some other ones in the bucket that I can’t remember… Oops.
We got a chance to try Ladyface’s new session with Citra hops straight from the fermentor. A little too sessionable for my liking, but very pretty in the sunset!
We finished the night with a strawberry and goat cheese salad, a little Smashed Blueberry and Cyrena brought out a surprise: halfshots of rum from Ballast Point that taste like scotch! I’m not a shot taker (well, not since college anyway…) but I couldn’t be rude and refuse this generosity. My mouth and throat burned like menthol for a while. Yeah, I’ll stick to beer…
Next month is our “a little bit late” Oktoberfest! Any SoCal ladies who want to join come out on the 17th for Michelle’s famous “kraut ‘n bacon” and some delicious Oktoberfest beers!