This is last of three collaboration (#BCBeerBloggers) posts about local Winter seasonal beers. Other participating blogs include:
West Coast Beer Geek – A beer geeks perspective on craft beer, beer events, beer pairings and more.
Mike’s Craft Beer – Not for the weak of taste buds. Lots of great beer reviews, brewery reviews and events on this site.
Dennis the Foodie – Weaving a personal story of food and beer in Vancouver, BC. Very thorough food reviews, great photos and beer pairings. Hey, that’s me!
Western Suds – An Alberta craft beer blog written by a craft beer enthusiast and ambassador for the growing Alberta craft beer scene.
Beer Rater – A beer guide without all the fluff, just some straight forward drinking advice.
If you love local beer, check these guys out! For this blog, I’m doing a food-based take on winter seasonal beers by pairing them up with some specific food.
Last pairing: Brassneck Inertia paired with 7 Year Aged Quebec Cheddar and Roquefort Gabriel Coulet!
It’s a sipper, not a chugger.
For my last #BCBeerBloggers post, I chose a beer from the brewery that I go to most for my growler fills: Inertia Imperial Stout from Brassneck Brewery. I believe Inertia has only been available twice since Brassneck opened — they opened October 3 last year, but who’s keeping track? 😉 — and it’s finally available NOW, so go quickly before it inevitably runs out!
For me, Les Amis du Fromage is the ONLY place to buy cheese. Friendly and knowledgeable service, plus their labels always have useful info.
Seven year, baby! Doesn’t get more cheddary than this!
I like other blue cheeses but I always go back to Roquefort. It’s got a certain creamy sweetness that balances everything out. The label even has suggested wine pairings printed on it!
Bonus cheese that I threw in to entice you, but I won’t be writing about it that much in this particular post. In a nutshell, the truffle flavour and aroma absolutely permeate this cheese. The goatiness meshes perfectly with the truffliness. I swear they use truffle oil to boost the truffle factor but I can’t find any mention of them using truffle oil online, only real truffles. So, great job! I abhor truffle oil. You might as well douse your food in perfume, which is basically what truffle oil is…the Elizabeth Arden Red Door of food.
This was also available at Les Amis du Fromage. It’s ok but I LOVE the Moccia & Urbani salami that’s also available there.
7 Year Aged Quebec Cheddar. I got lots of tyrosine crystals in this one! Those are the crunchy little crystals that you find in some aged cheeses. I thought it was a little strange when I first encountered them but now find those little crunchy umami bits so enjoyable. This cheese has that strong classic cheddar taste with an enveloping “gummy” texture that really gets in your teeth and around your tongue.
Roquefort Gabriel Coulet. This is one of the “cheaper” roqueforts but I actually like this one better than some of the more expensive ones. It’s got that salty, medicinal, metallic quality but balanced by a creamy sweetness and a depth that I don’t get tired of.
For shits ‘n giggles, Truffle Tremor, from the same people that brought you Humbolt Fog. I love how some goat cheeses have the two-textures-in-one thing going. Again, the truffle aroma and flavour are off the hook. I’m not gonna write much about pairing this with Brassneck Inertia cuz it doesn’t work at all. What would work is a witbier or a drier saison!
Here we go! Brassneck Inertia Imperial Stout (9% ABV!) with our selection of cheeses and Swiss Bakery baguette (conveniently available at Les Amis du Fromage) and Fife Bakery sourdough to soak it up. I let the beer and cheese rest at room temp for ~20 minutes before diving in.
Brassneck Inertia Imperial Stout. Frothy, mocha head that dissipated rather quickly. Beer itself is inky black/dark dark brown.
Inertia has aromas of coffee bean, tobacco (cigarette butts in particular), dark chocolate, and a bit of the alcohol coming through. It’s got a very smooth and creamy mouthfeel that I really enjoyed. Flavours of coffee and chocolate, hint of zingy licorice, and a mild sweetness that balances the beer out. The finish is dry coffee. The alcohol burn isn’t quite as strong as the aroma might suggest…it’s almost hidden. I finished off half a glass just exploring the flavours before I even started eating the cheese. Full and intense yet relatively easy to drink at the same time.
Hoooooahh, it’s strong. Maybe don’t start off with it on an empty stomach. It’s a sipper, not a chugger. (Next day at work would be a tough one…)
How did the Inertia Imperial Stout go with the Cheddar? Great match! Think Guinness & Cheddar soup, except here both elements are amped up to the max. The Inertia complemented very well, almost melding together with the aged cheddar somehow. It just works. At first glance you’d think, “coffee and chocolate with cheddar??!” But somehow it tastes good together.
How did the Inertia Imperial Stout go with the Roquefort? Ahhh not so gouda… The Roquefort brought out the dryness and bitterness in the beer in a somewhat unpleasant way. Not quite a winning combo. But, not all imperial stouts are created equal, so subtly different imperial stouts may make this pairing work better. To me, this was just an ok pairing.
Inertia is a great approachable yet full-flavoured imperial stout. Act quickly before it’s gone for the season! But I’d get a 1L fill instead of full a 2L growler because it’s meant to be savoured in smaller quantities. Unless you’re drinking for ten, you ain’t gonna finish a 2L of Inertia by yourself!
That’s it for me for this #BCBeerBloggers Local Winter Favourites collablogation (ugh). Thanks to West Coast Beer Geek for setting this up and sealing the deal with coke and hookers. Coming up tomorrow to continue the festivities is Western Suds! I’m looking forward to seeing what Alberta has in store…