I wish all my readers, their families and friends a Happy New Year 2016! May it be healthy and prosperous!
Thursday, December 31, 2015
Sunday, December 27, 2015
It's time to sum up another year with some nice pictures... many good memories are connected to those. As always it's really hard to reduce all the pix of one month down to one... a click on the picture'll bring you to the corresponding report...
The answer is 42
Green lights in the sky
Whisky and... ribeye steak
Tour de Belgium, Part 1 of 3
Glenfarclas Whisky Dinner
The Three Amigos
Swiss craft beer and cigars
Wednesday, December 23, 2015
Tuesday, December 15, 2015
As I like Single Malt and also good food I found a possibility to combine those two things: whisky infused brats!
After my first test run a while ago, I made another try now with two different whiskys: Bowmore 12yo on one hand, Laphroaig Quarter Cask on the other hand. Those are two standards which you can get at a reasonable price and you don't regret to use them for cooking.
Bowmore 12yo. infusion
Laphroaig Quarter Cask infusion
After injecting them with the whisky I let them sit over night in the fridge that the liquid can settle down and distribute within the sausage. After taking them out of the fridge I fired up my Monolith, stabilized it at a temperature between 90 and 100 °C (194 - 212 F) and put some beech wood on the charcoal for the smoke. I didn't measure any core temperature but after approx. 2 hours of smoking they'd a very attractive color, so I removed them from the smoke and put them on a cooling rack.
Of course I couldn't resist to try them and cut one of each before I put the rest in some vaccum bags for storage. Surprisingly the difference between the Bowmore and Laphroaig brats was not as significant as expected even though the whisky gave a certain twist to it. It was easy to find it out because I put two more of those brats in the smoke which had no whisky infusion.
In the meantime some friends had the chance to try them also and until now everybody was happy with the taste. I'm sure that I will make them more often as they're a nice snack.
Monday, December 07, 2015
It's one day before Santa Claus and in the meantime the Pilgrim brewery released their third seasonal beer, called Winterbier. It's a mild hopped, golden colored beer with some additional flavors coming from herbs and spices which are typical for the Xmas season. As the times before they celebrate the introduction of this new release with a little event where they pour out this beer free of charge... I wasn't able to join that kinda event before but this time all matched.
The way to Fischingen was partly very foggy but just when we arrived there, the sun broke through the clouds and lifted the fog... and it was really pleasant outside... remembering pictures of the past two events I guess that less people came this time. Anyhow, we'd a good time, enjoyed the excellent beer which has definitely some interesting spicy aromas which remind me a lot of gingerbread paired with some fruity flavors, mangolike... delicious. It matches perfectly to the season and went well with the Quai d'Orsay Corona and the Vegas Robaina Familiares that I smoked during my stay....
Monday, November 30, 2015
It was about time to have our whisky dinner that we arrange within a group of three friends, each time at the home of one of us. This time it's Alex' turn and as he moved to a new house just a few weeks ago, it was the first happening at this new home.
The line-up for the evening was really exlusive: two old Glen Grants (1957 and 1970), a 20yo. Glenlivet from 1965, a 1969 Longmorn, a 1989 Bowmore, 30 yo. Bowmore from Waldhaus am See, a 1983 Port Ellen and another 31 yo. Caol Ila bottled by Silver Seal.
As a first appetizer we started with an interesting Dark Ale from Scotland brewed by the Orkney Brewery. The smell is dominated by fruits like figs, caramel, vanilla and of course whisky. Addtionally to those flavors some malty aromas, added by coffee and wood hit the taste buds. Very good beer, a perfect starter for the evening.
The menu was as follows:
- Salad with bacon dressing
- Beef ragout and homemade spaetzle
- Espresso and some whisky chocolates
- Orange soufflé
- Cheese (obviously I forgot to take a picture of that)
As always the food was top notch and the whiskys defnitely spoke for themselves. It's not an everyday line-up that we'd in front of us but it proofed again why it's a good decision to make evenings like that. A great evening which will be continued with another meeting in 2016, taking place at my home. I already have an idea for the food, I'm sure it'll be no BBQ but also a really tasty thing that all of us three know from another location. Let's see if I can fulfill the expectations...
Tuesday, November 24, 2015
On the 1st and 3rd Saturday of the month people have the chance to buy and pick up their beer directly at the brewery. Last Saturday I took the chance for another visit. I've made a reservation for their new Pumpkin Ale already and wanted to pick it up, as well as a box of the Hymn-Bier which they've brewed in cooperation with UG Bräu. Urs, the guy behind UG, hooked me up with his cherry beer that I enjoyed a lot during the hot days in summer.
On this Saturday Katie, brewer at the Bierfactory, and Gabriel were there to pour out some of the last rest of their Pumpkin Ale, to hand out orders and chat with the people. When I arrived, the (last) palette of Archie was still filled but when I was back home I heard that they're sold out... even though the no. of bottles per customer've been limited to maximum one box (of 12 bottles).
I really liked Happy Jack, the Pumpkin Ale, they'd brewed last year. 24 g of pumpkin mash have been used for 1 L of beer, a much higher concentration than last year... and the difference was definitely obvious. Happy Jack was surprisingly creamy (unfortunately I only had two bottles last year from a sample pack) and the taste of pumpkin was very reserved. This year the pumpkin aroma was present from the first sip... wow! The spices they used were the same as last year but due to the higher pumpkin content the flavor profile also changed to a more spicy beer! Good stuff fresh from the tap!
Another new beer which is just waiting for the final pricing (and some more rest) before it can be sold is the brand new "Nein Finger", a Chocolate Porter. Katie had a sample in a glass where we could take a nose of it and the smell is really incredible. My reservation is made, I'm just waiting for the pick-up-call!
At home I couldn't resist to open a bottle of Archie and enjoy it.... my impressions that I'd with the one from the tap were confirmed: good aroma of pumpkin added by some well balanced spicy notes. With the low IBU level it's easy to drink, not to sweet, not too bitter, just well balanced. I can imagine that it'll go good with a cigar like the Vegas Robaina Famosos or Familiares...