Scardello & Beer at EastSide
The thoughtful pairing of food and drink is no easy accomplishment, and East Side brings together their craft beer selection with a local restaurant's fare on a regular monthly basis. Previous pairings include Chestnut Tree, Boca 31, and Barley & Board. We had the pleasure of sitting in on the Scardello Cheese & Beer pairing, and though Scardello may not be local to Denton, the hard work and care that comes into pairing cheese with beer is something to be proud of.
The event began with an introduction beer, the Lakewood Lion’ Share III Red Wine BA Ale. It was the perfect palate cleanser, not to mention that it is nice, strong, and will warm you up!
#66 Rogue Hazelnut Brown with Cacio Di Bosco Il Forteto (Sheep’s Milk Truffle Cheese)
This firm, white cheese is speckled with black flakes, and bursting with flavor. The garlic notes make you want it on a pizza yesterday, and the pairing with the Hazelnut is spot on. The herb flavors and spiciness of the cheese is cut through by the sweetness of the brown ale. This was my favorite pairing of the evening, EastSide was on point with bringing these two together to create a harmonious balance of flavor.
#45 512 Wit with Wensleydale with Blueberries
The Wensleydale is indulgent, creamy and sweet, full of the tang from the blueberries. The citrus qualities of the 512 intensified the blueberry flavor, and you can’t go wrong with the tart and sweet pairing of berries and citrus. Definitely my second favorite of the event.
Jester King Noble King with Meredith Valley Australian Goat Cheese
Jester King is known for its sours and hoppy beers, with the Noble King not disappointing. Meredith Valley has a pretty strong reputation for their marinated goat and feta cheese, this one particularly soaking up the herbs beautifully. Personally, I'm not a fan of goat cheese, but I’ll try anything once. With the suggestion of nulling the strong flavor by using the sourdough as a vessel, you were able to appreciate the extra steps taken in creating this cheese. The savory flavors were complimented by the citrus sour notes of the Noble King.
Ranger Creek Bourbon Barrel Brown with Ewephoria
The Ewephoria is one of a kind, an aged sheeps milk cheese, that has a very strong flavor profile. The intense character of the Ranger Creek in its bourbon aroma, with notes of vanilla and oak, did little to calm the sweetness of the cheese, giving you one big bite of bold flavor.
#80 Sierra Nevada Celebration with Baby Blue
I guess I got what I deserved, this is my arch nemesis of cheeses. East Side did a great job of pairing flavors though, and even for those cheeses that you tend to stay far away from, you can appreciate how each cheese compliments the brew. The richness of this cheese and the sour cream quality is never lost in the beer if anything the citrus notes and hop of the Sierra Nevada intensify the flavor.
Jester King Commercial Suicide with Rippleton
Oh soft squishy cheese, this was definitely one of the funkier ones. That’s cheese for you though, smells like the inside of a gym bag and then taste like another world. The Ewephoria is earthy and sweet, the tartness of the Jester King was the complete compromise in flavors.
You can keep up with of EastSide’s events through their Facebook page. The pairings range in price, but are in the $35 ballpark, and have recently been selling out so make sure to seize the opportunity when you see the Facebook event go up. Word has it the next one will be mid to late January, and with so many amazing restaurants opening up in the little d, you know it will be a pairing you won’t want to miss.
Photos by Dmetri Howell
Header image design by Brittany Keeton