Renowned chef Terence Feury of Fork teamed up with Allagash Brewing on August 13th to dish out a memorable dinner of superior food and beer pairings. Representing Allagash of Portland Maine was Jason Perkins – brewmaster who has been part of Allagash for eleven years.
Allagash was an early entry into craft brewing in the Northeast and has specialized in Belgian inspired beers of all types. Jason explained to me that it was hard for most beer fans to really get their beer-heads around Belgian flavors in the early 1990’s , and times were rough for the brewery in the early years. Now they are happily riding the wave of Belgian style popularity – especially here in the Philadelphia area “Brussels on the Schuylkill”. When I asked him if it bothered him that so many craft breweries were now turning out Belgian inspired brews, he told me that as far as he was concerned, the more the better. Apparently Jason had done the Philly area craft beer gauntlet that day, starting out with Sam and Brian of Dogfish in Delaware then working his way up to Doylestown and Victory in the afternoon.
I asked him what he thought of the “Wild Devil” – Victory’s Hope Devil dosed with “Brett” Belgian yeast, and he admitted that he had initially thought that the idea was a bad one, but when he actually tasted it he was quite pleased with the result.
The food was, as expected, superb – if I had to pick one pairing as a highlight, I’d select the Prince Edward Island mussel gratin with baby spinach and soubise with the Allagash Dubble. The truly sublime pairing of flavors complimented and elevated both. Don’t even get me started on the Black Belgian Stout with the sublime dark chocolate cake with malted milk gelato. If you haven’t eaten at Fork yet, you must. If you haven’t drank any Allagash – get started – you can find it at Teresa’s Next Door, the Beer Yard and other fine establishments.