Friday, July 24, 2015

07/18 - The Three Amigos

After spending a fantastic day last year, we decided immediately to repeat it.. therefore we met last week at my place to enjoy another day full of good food, cigars, drinks and conversations...

The Monolith was fired up early in the morning as I wanted to prepare a nice beef brisket for dinner and even if you make it hot'n'fast, it'll take a serious while to be done to perfection. The meat itself had been trimmed, injected and rubbed at the evening before and was in the fridge over night to settle down.

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Brisket flat and point, injected and rubbed

In the morning I took it out of the cooling and applied another rub on it, to give it another layer of spicy flavor, before I put it in the mesquite smoke. The flat will be cut into slices, the point will end up as burnt ends. Thx to the Monolith, an excellent Swiss charcoal and my BBQ Guru Cyber Q this'll be a relaxed cooking!

Ready to start - mesquite and hickory wood for the smoke

After those first preparations it's time for a coffee and a cigar... and later a nice beer with still the same cigar. I decided for the Vegas Robaina Clasicos from the 5th Anniversary humidor and it was an awesome match with the dark roasted Ethiopian coffee with its intensive malty flavors. After finishing off the coffee there was still enough cigar left to match it with another beverage: some Westvleteren 8 which I bought back in April during my Tour de Belgium directly at the monastery.

VR Clasicos 5th Anniversary and a coffee

VR Clasicos 5th Anniversary and a Westvleteren 8

The Monolith's smoking, the cigars too... and my guests arrived as planned. Time to take the chicken breasts out of the cooler and to fire up the gas grill to sear them. After the searing I put them on some cedar wood planks to cook them to the desired internal temperatur without drying them out and keeping them moist and juicy... at the end I also applied a shiny glace on them. The glaze looks good and also gives another layer of tangy flavor to the meat which was accompanied by a pineapple chili chutney (using my first homegrown Jalapeños which I raised from the seed) and some rustico baguette.

Chicken breast with pineapple chili chutney

While my friends stuck to the alcohol free beer (driving sometimes sucks), I had different craft beers in my glass, realizing again that they all went very well with the cigars. Many people say beer and cigars is a no-go, but definitely not for me... and the beer scenery changed a lot over the last years, even though for the most Swiss the only beer they know is a traditional Lager. Anyhow... Bierfactory Absent, UG-Bräu Chriesi, Bierfactory Old H, Liechtensteiner Brauhaus Coffee Stout and another Westvleteren 8... they matched perfectly with the Trinidad Fundadores from 1998, the Upmann Super Corona from 2000, the Punch Black Prince from 1998 and the Sancho Panza Corona Gigantes from 1999. All those drinks and cigars were accompanied by a big variety of small finger food that my lovely wife prepared for us to cover the gap between lunch and dinner, thx a lot for that!

Fundadores and Absent


Black Prince and Chriesi

Super Corona and Old H

As mentioned earlier I decided to make for dinner the food which many in the BBQ circus define as the supreme discipline of BBQ: beef brisket, served sliced and as burnt ends. The classic side dish, at least for me, are my well-known baked beans prepared in a cigar box, the perfect presentation especially if there are some cigar smokers at the table.

The famous beans prepared in a Ramon Allones Estupendos box

Tanja additionally also prepared some tasty polenta, topped with some Parmesan. The brisket came out well, juicy, tender and full of intensive flavor. That's how I like my brisket. I was glad that also Tom and Ralf liked it and we all were really full... and had a good basis for the after dinner cigar, the Punch Platino ER India 2009.

This cigar was smoking really good when being fresh and I was curious how it's developed over the last 6 years. It's definitely no disappointment, this cigar definitely rocks the house and I'm sure that it'll develop even further over the next years of storage.

The supreme discipline of BBQ: beef brisket, burnt ends - accompanied by baked beans and polenta

After dinner cigar: Punch Platino ER India 2009

After dinner cigar: Punch Platino ER India 2009

While smoking this excellent cigar, we started to pull out the spirits and started with a Blend of which we'd no high expectations. A White Horse (price at the supermarket nowadays should be between 25 and 30 Euros). This bottle is approx. from the late 80s and honestly it was really a surprise. An enjoyable and very mellow whisky that went well with the dessert we'd in the meantime, the sweetness in the aftertaste gave a good balance to the sourness of the rhubarb in the dessert... and it went well with the cigar too.... later on we poured some Caol Ila and Laphroaig in the glasses... When I put together the selection for the evening I just took some bottles out of the cabinet and all I had with me was Islay whisky only... Coincidence or just missing variety? Who knows... it's tasty anyhow!


Surprisingly good: White Horse Blend from the 80s

Caol Ila 1982 - 1996

Laphroaig from the SSMC, Small Club Edition

Thx guys for your visit, your friendship and an awesome day! See you next year in July for another Saturday Herf with beer, BBQ and cigars...

Beer, BBQ and cigars

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