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Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Monk's Kettle a Hub for Craft Brewers from All Over

Posted By on Wed, May 5, 2010 at 3:11 PM

click to enlarge Monthly beer dinners (like tonight's sold-out Allagash prix fixe) attract brewers nationwide. - HRC333/FLICKR
  • hrc333/Flickr
  • Monthly beer dinners (like tonight's sold-out Allagash prix fixe) attract brewers nationwide.
As the mecca of craft brewing, brewmasters from all over love coming to San Francisco for events where they're sure to find emphatic and knowledgeable fans. One such hub for these activities is Monk's Kettle, which hosts monthly beer dinners. Tonight, Allagash Brewing from Portland, Maine, will have its wares featured in a five-course pairing dinner. Allagash is a vaunted leader among American brewers that specialize in Belgian-style ales, which makes owner Rob Tod, who's in town for the dinner, a brewer of affection among many a beer geek.

Fresh off a pair of medals at the biannual World Beer Cup, the first course of the sold-out dinner pairs a Laura Chenel goat cheese tart with Provençal tomatoes, orange oil, and basil chiffonade with Allagash White, which earned a gold medal in the Belgian Witbier category. This is Allagash's flagship beer, accounting for 80 percent of annual production, a sweet and spicy wheat beer that often converts fans of Hoegaarden or Blue Moon.

The second course pairs Dungeness crab salad with the WBC bronze medal winner Fluxus 2009, a Saison brewed with sweet potatoes and black pepper. If the $85 price tag for the prix-fixe meal seems steep, keep in mind beers like this retail for about $20. Another bottle at that price point is Curieux, which will not only be served with the entrée of natural short ribs, it will be used to braise them. It's a bourbon-barrel aged Tripel-style ale. Tod and the crew at Monk's Kettle will be busting out a 2008 vintage of this delectable elixir cherished by those of us who love beers matured in used bourbon barrels.

Monk's Kettle 3141 16th St (at Albion), 865-9523

Allagash beers are available at City Beer Store, 1168 Folsom (at Eighth St.); the Jug Shop, 1590 Pacific (at Polk); all BevMo locations; and more.

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Brian Yaeger

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