Portsmouth Brewery Beer and Pie Social 2011

Monday night the Portsmouth Brewery held their first annual Beer and Pie Social to commemorate National Pie Day. Naturally, as I mentioned in a previous post, I would be there with bells on. I love pie and I was excited to see what Chef Todd and Brewer Tod had come up with. This was a very casual night with pies in different parts of the lounge and tasting glasses of beer at the bar, plenty pie and beer to go around.

The first pairing I had was a Fatayer, a Lebanese Spinach Pie, paired with “Wild Thang,” a wild rice ale. This was a nice pie with a nice salty pretzel like crust. The Wild Thang is a fan favorite and I was told it would be around for a while since they made a double batch of it.

I then moved on to the British Raised Pork Pie, paired with Winter Rye. This was my favorite combo of them all. The Winter Rye was really nice and sweeter than I remembered and it went well with the huge slice of pie I grabbed. It was meaty and I made sure to slide my fork through the hot ale mustard before every bite, mmmm!

Time for desert. I went after the Cherry and Burnt Sugar Tart, paired with “Maude,” a sour, Flemish-style Red Ale. I am not the biggest fan of the Flanders, a little too sour for my taste, but I think it went really well with this pie. The sweetness of the pie really balanced out the heavy sour notes of the Flanders.

Last but not least was the Chocolate-Espresso Pie, paired with Milk Stout, especially infused with a cold extraction coffee extract. This was my favorite beer of the night (until the surprise at the end) because it was Milk Stout infused with coffee from Breaking New Grounds, the coffee shop on Market Square in town. The pie was extremely rich so I split it with Lisa. It was really good.

All in all the night was awesome. The pie and beer pairings were spot on and I made sure I complimented the chef on the pies, more specifically the Pork pie. The one gripe I had about the night was I wish Tod and Todd spoke one line about each pairing and how they came about. Throughout the night I noticed there were about 50 tulip glasses on the bar unfilled. Were we getting a door prize when we left? No no no my friends, it was something more special. As Tod began to thank everyone for coming, the bartender started pouring beer into these glasses. I instantly got excited because I knew what it was. They gave everyone a glass of 2010 Kate the Great. What a great way to end the night. I spent the remainder of the evening chatting with a food blogger from NY and assistant brewer Tyler while sipping on some Kate and eating the remainder of my Chocolate Espresso Pie. How could it be better?

Can’t wait for next year’s event!