|August 11, 2007|
I left the Toronado Saturday to attend a beer dinner at the Cathedral Hill Hotel with the beers of 21st Amendment and brewmaster Shaun O’Sullivan. Despite the Toronado party across town, there was a very good turnout for the dinner. Bruce put on his usual excellent panoply of flavors, paired to perfection with 21st Amendment’s flavorful beers.
21st Amendment brewmaster Shaun O’Sullivan toasting the assembled patrons of his beer dinner Saturday night.
Our first course, smoked salmon tower with heirloom tomatoes and cucumber gelee and scallion crème fraiche, which paired quite well with Shaun’s Watermelon Wheat.
Beer Chef Bruce Paton with The Beer Geek, Chris Nelson and his wife, Merideth.
Our dessert, chocolate triple threat, a trio of delectable chocolate culinary concoctions paired with General Pippo’s Porter.
Brewmaster Shaun O’Sullivan, in great spirits, with beer chef Bruce Paton.
After dessert, there was one more treat for everybody — the Watermelon Funk, a collaboration Shaun did with Vinnie Cilurzo of Russian River Brewing. Vinnie took 30 or so gallons of Watermelon Wheat, sparked it with Brettanomyces, and put in a wooden barrel for aging, where it’s spent the last two years. I tried some from the barrel several months ago at Russian River where it tasted quite bright and full of juicyfruit. The older version has softened and become more complex with subtle fruit flavors and all sorts of tastes layered within each sip. A delightful experiment and quite tasty. If you hurry, you may be able to still get a taste for yourself at the Toronado, where one of the few kegs of this beer are available.
As a result of the funk, Bruce played funk music throughout the dinner to get us in the mood. I was hoping we might see some dancing, but it didn’t come to pass. Maybe next time.
Shaun with friend Justin Crossley, the man behind the Brewing Network.
Shaun with his head brewer Jesse Houck, sadly without his medal.