CraftBeer.Com at the Tasting Kitchen

PamperYourPalate_04On Tuesday  August 13, we had the pleasure of attending’s first Los Angeles beer pairing dinner held at Abbot Kinney’s The Tasting Kitchen.  The event was organized by Publisher of and Craft Beer Program Director for the Brewers Association, Julie Herz. Julia, explained that events like this are very common in the midwest and east coast, but this was the first time it was being conducted in Los Angeles.  The format was essentially a beer pairing dinner with presentations by the brewers and chef during each course.  It’s interesting to attend an event like this in LA when the beer scene here is so locally focused.  It’s sometimes easy to forget that there is other craft beer out there outside the amazing portfolio being produced locally.  That being said, this was a fantastically small and focused event, which effectively showcased some of the best breweries around paired with some truly fantastic food.

PamperYourPalate_09The Guests &  Breweries

Each beer was expertly paired with a gourmet course made specifically for the pairing.  Both Julia Herz and Chef Adam Dulye worked tirelessly with the team at The Tasting Kitchen to put together a fantastic food spectacle.  The accompany beers were brought in from US brewers near and far from Los Angeles to Washington and Lousiana to Boston.  Julia introduced the breweries and gave an overview of’s involvement in the program.  During each course a brewery representative introduced the beer, the pairing, and provided a high level historical background of their respective brewery.  This was a media event aimed at introducing attendees to not only new beers, but the “Pamper Your Palate With Craft Beer” event series, which Julia hopes to continue.

PamperYourPalate_06Julia Herz – Publisher of and Craft Beer Program Direction for the Brewer’s Association

Chef Adam Dulye – Brewers Association Culinary Consultant and co-owner/chef of San Francisco’s The Monk’s Kettle and Abbot’s Cellar

John Bryant – NoLi Brewhouse, Spokane WA

Rich Doyle, CEO – Harpoon Brewery, Boston, MA

Cyrena Nouzille, Proprietor/GM – Ladyface Ale Companie, Augora Hills, CA

David Blossom, President – Abita Brewing Co. Abita Springs, LA

Jeffrey Edgerton, Brewmaster – Bridgeport Brewing Co, Portland, OR

Doug Constantiner, Co-Founder – Societe Brewing Co, San Diego, CA

Doug Smith, Operations Manager – Fort Collins Brewery, CO


The Menu

Rather than bore you with tasting descriptions of everything, we’ll look at everything from a very high level.  Just know that the dinner was expertly put together with some very interesting pairings that amplified and even changed the flavors in each course.  From a speck trout paired with Ladyface’s blonde to Societe’s hoppy The Pupil paired with olive oil drenched bistecca, every course was intense and delicious.

speck. trout. melon. summer onion. savory. fromage blanc. 

{paired with}  steamworks brewing co. – colorado kolsch {&} ladyface ale companie – la blonde

PamperYourPalate_08qual egg. sheep’s milk ricotta ravioli. brown butter. garlic blossoms. 

{paired with} abita brewing co. – amber {&} no li brewhouse – crystal bitter esb

aspician duck. braised endives. 

{paired with} the brewer’s art – la petroleuse {&} bridgeport brewing co. – kingpin

PamperYourPalate_11bistecca fiorentina. olive oil. tomato. “pudding” selection of cheeses. 

{paired with} harpoon brewery – rich & dan’s rye ipa {&} societe brewing co. – the pupil

chocolate nougatine tart. stout caramel. coconut sorbetto. 

{paired with} great lakes brewing co. – edmund fitzgerald porter {&} the fort collins brewery – chocolate stout


The Venue and Verdict

Post coverage on a food pairing dinner is always a bit of a pickle.  It’s one of those “you had to be there situations,” but at the same time it’s also a call to action to “make sure you go next time.”  Pamper Your Palate with Craft Beer was a great experience and an excellent opportunity for local media to meet the people behind  The focus was intense on both sensory stimulation and American craft beer education.  A great opportunity to learn about America’s craft beer movement.  The only drawback was that the venue was a little on the loud side, which made it hard to hear some of the presentations unless the brewer and an above average speaking voice.  Despite the noise, the ambiance was intimate and scenic.  For those who have not been to the tasting kitchen, it’s a great place to experience elevated-chic gastro-dining.  Julia Herz did a fantastic job planning the menu, pairings, and overall event flow. We’ll definitely be looking forward to the next event and hopefully you can make it too.

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