The Celtic Ross Hotel, Rosscarbery is launching its exciting and innovative Irish Craft Beer Pairing Club this Friday (March 15th).
It’s a unique experience for people in West Cork to enjoy this growing trend which sees specially selected craft beer matched with local produce for incredible results.
The event will run four times throughout the year. The inaugural event this Friday will start with a drinks reception of craft beers, followed by a four-course casual dinner of West Cork langoustine, Kealkill lamb and Carbery cheese.
Locally produced beer
Each course will be matched by a West Cork Brewery craft beer from Skibbereen, with their brewery craft masters there on the night to explain the different flavours and tasting notes.
Executive chef Alex Petit said: ‘At the drinks reception we’ll have canapés matched with one of the lighter beers. After that we’ll move on to a Dublin Bay prawn dish, beautiful in season at the moment. Then we’ll have a lamb dish cooked two ways followed by a cheese dish with the cheese provided by Carbery cheddar. Finally we’ll finish with a chocolate dessert with a malt ice cream.’
Booming brewing scene
Explaining the motivation behind the club, events manager Marie Dooley said the Irish craft beer scene was booming: ‘The industry has grown from 15 microbreweries to 72 since 2012. People are looking for an alternative to wine. There are as many pairing tasting notes with beer as there are with wine.’
Alex added: ‘The dining scene has changed as well. It’s moved towards more informal dining in recent years and the craft beer gives it a much more casual approach especially for tasting menus.’
When it comes to pairing food with beer, Alex says their starting point is always with the dishes.
‘We work with seasonal and local produce which is very important to us. Then we choose one microbrewery and using their beers we match them with our food. A lager, which is more subtle would be matched with fish whereas a stout or a porter would be matched with something stronger like chocolate or beetroot.
'We have very little wine being made in Ireland but we have many beers so it’s a great way of supporting local producers.’
Future events will feature other local breweries as well as those outside Cork. Tickets for Friday’s event cost €45 per person. For information on how to purchase visit www.celticrosshotel.com or call 023 884 8722
Over 18s only. Visit www.drinkaware.ie