(The California Pilgrimage is my one month journey around California encompassing various activities but overall, these posts will be about beer. This title is directly from the first episode of Michael Jackson’s old show called The Beer Hunter. A True Beer Geek must know about Michael Jackson. If you don’t, you’re either a poser or someone who is starting out the journey through the Elixir of Life. I hope you are the latter.)
Day one, May 24, 2015
Genesis… The beginning… It is the first book of the Judeo-Christian religions referring to the origin story according to this culture and religion. It is, in some ways, my Genesis into Craft Beer. I have been crazy about the drink for the last five years yet I haven’t been able to visit the American Breweries I know and love. To that end, I was able to visit three breweries during this visit. This was quite low for my preferences but NorCal (I was mostly based in San Francisco and the Bay Area during this visit) has so much to provide. It is my type of place and I can’t wait to go back. Nevertheless, this day was a great start.
I arrived at SFO (San Francisco International Airport) around 4 PM with my grandparents (who are the best grandparents one can have). The view was cloudy and grey, a sharp contrast to the warm, bright and sunny palette that I was exposed to the past few months. I was ecstatic after bearing a fourteen hour flight in economy class plus the hour long wait at immigration. I arrived at my aunt’s house around 6:30 PM with this beautiful view of the Western Conference Finals Game (anything in a 72 inch screen is beautiful).
Prior to leaving for San Francisco, I messaged my good high school friend Aaron on my trip to the Bay Area. We agreed to see each other when I arrived but I didn’t expect to see him a few hours into my trip. He saw my uploaded photo of the TV on my Facebook feed and he surprised me by arriving at the driveway fifteen minutes later. It has been more than a year since I last saw him when he and his wife visited Manila. Seeing him just sent bolts of energy around my body and I couldn’t help but run and hug the mofo. After talking to him for a few minutes, I asked permission from my relatives if I could spend the night with them. Luckily, I have very understanding relatives.
Due to my incessant demand for beer (I was in California, it’s beer country), Aaron and Sarah brought me to Bj’s Restaurant Brewhouse at San Bruno.
It’s been a real long time since I’ve written a blog post. I am sorry for not putting out content far longer than I have written for this blog but I hope to put out content again soon. Anyway, it’s time to focus on new content rather than dwell on my long hiatus.
A few months ago, I was in Iligan City for work and I happened to be able to contact Pauly del Rosario of Fat Pauly’s Handcrafted Ales and Lagers since he’s based there. What started out as a simple hangout was turned into a nice beer tasting session with him, his then fiancee now wife and his friends.
Last March 21, 2014 was a special day for me. It was the first time that I hosted a beer and food pairing dinner for a group beyond my friends and family. It was a project 2 years in the making due to the request of my former Atenean professor for his class.
Further on, why did he request a Beer and Food Pairing dinner for his class? His class is about culture and the senses. I was a former student in his class and we both thought it was a great addition to the course. After the long process of trying to make it work, it finally happened.
With the participation of Barley Gastropub and Fat Pauly’s Handcraft Ales and Lagers, the five course dinner was set for eight people.
The menu was designed by Chef Justin of Barley Gastropub with the beer selection picked by yours truly.
Beer is a drink that spans hundreds of styles and various ingredients. Thus, tasting beer is a great skill to have if you are a beginning beer enthusiast. It is obvious to everyone that there is a huge difference between a brew such as Cerveza Negra and a Pale Pilsen. The problem is, how do you prove it?
I would love to toast to the success of Books Bites and Brews first Craft Beer and Food Pairing dinner last Saturday. It was one of the first attempts at seriously providing people an avenue to the world of beer. With that in mind, I documented my experience that night for your viewing pleasure.
Good day fellow beer lovers. It’s been a while since I last wrote and the amount of material that I have to write is quite a lot for the next few days. First off, I went to the Omakase Degustation at Sensei Sushi for my friend’s birthday and it was great. I had paired beers with the dishes that night but the amount of writing involved is immense. That will happen next week since I was too focused on eating rather than documenting it. For a good background of the dinner, check out my cousin, Mikka Wee, write about the dinner on her blog at: http://mikkawee.com/2014/01/28/sensei-sushi-degustation/
Moving on, I wanted to write about my favorite things to do with beer, using it as an ingredient for dishes. People love using beer as an ingredient for dishes such as fish and chips where beer is added to the batter. That’s cool. I like the idea but the concept of using beer for cooking is a fairly complicated procedure. Using the ever available San Miguel beer is a great start to cooking with beer but I’d rather use one of my favorite beers around, Kapuziner’s Hefeweizen (German Wheat Beer).
Excuse me for word salad. I guess you guys want me to go straight to the point. Well here it is,
I remember a month ago during the holidays when I was in Davao. Now, Davao is a great city. It’s a great place to live since nature is around you and the people are warm and very relaxed. The problem with Davao is the beer selection. With that problem, I was forced to think of solutions to satiate my hunger for suds while also having some great grub to pair it with.
Nonetheless, I didn’t get to fully satiate my hunger and thirst for a great pairing but I returned to the foundation where I found beer and food pairing to be one of my passions in life. It is the simple Oreo cookie and Cerveza Negra!
Just like you guys, I celebrated the holidays so I was preoccupied with copious amounts of food and drinks that gave me the reason to slack off and just enjoy the time. With that in mind, I am sorry for posting a new article just now. I can be lazy that way but nonetheless, I promise to post regularly from now on.
Moving on, the holidays was a time for me to reconnect with friends and family. With this occurrence, it necessitated some celebratory drinks! As with this blog is primarily about beer, I celebrated these moments with beer and a few glasses of liquor as well.
I met up with my good friend Rommel during the holidays to catch up since the last time we saw each other was months ago. At first, I wanted to check out Black Sheep at W Building but it was too busy that night. My friend wanted to just have a relaxed night so we proceeded to The Bottle Shop of Global Beer Exchange.
We each had a drink and we choose the beers on tap.
With the glassware discussed in the previous article, it is time to move on to the pour. Pouring a beer is a tricky thing. There are several ways to actually pour a beer and the debate is an endless one. This post will show the different styles of pouring a beer to give you the choice of which would be best for you.
This link is from fora.tv. The speaker in this video is Dave McLean, an owner of a brewery in San Francisco. This pouring style is the style that most people are used to. This pouring style is easy and good. Using this style would be great while you’re starting out.
This video features and in-depth discussion on pouring and tasting beer. I recommend watching this video just for the eloquence and mastery of Dave McLean on the topic.
The other link is a pouring style that is recommended by Randy Mosher. Randy Mosher is the writer of the book “Tasting Beer: An Insider’s Guide to the World’s Greatest Drink.” The pouring style is difficult compared to the first but it does make the beer taste better. This is my personal opinion. Don’t take this as verbatim. My take on the pour is that it allows the beer to be fully aerated thus helping the beer reach optimal flavor in the least amount of time.
The last link is the pouring style for a German Wheat Beer. German Wheat Beers are different from most styles due to the high amount of wheat. The wheat gives the beer a larger head (beer foam). To add to that, most German Wheat Beers still have the yeast inside the containers. Due to this occurrence, pouring a wheat beer is similar but different in the tiny details. Below is the video made by Cicerone (beer’s version of a sommelier) Robert V. He gives an in-depth discussion on the style itself while talking about the effects each step of the pour.
Pouring a beer is not that complicated. It just so happens that there are tiny details that sometimes become obsessive compulsive sometimes.
With that in mind, it’s up to you which one suits you the best. If you think that a certain pouring style makes the beer better, then go with it!