Kelowna Craft Ale Enthusiasts Treated to Brewmaster’s Dinner
It’s hard to cover the entire territory of B.C. single-handed in any great detail. Therefore, I’ve decided to invite those who are involved in our craft beer scene in some capacity to contribute to the B.C. Beer Blog about their particular niche or region. Here is my first guest blogger from the Okanagan, Rob Trent, who is spreading the word about craft beer in wine country, along with his cohorts at the Okanagan Tapmasters Society.
Craft beer enthusiasts in the Okanagan had something to cheer about recently when Kelowna’s Tree Brewing teamed up with Cabana Bar and Grille to present a Brewmaster’s Dinner. Cabana chef, Ned Bell, one of Canada’s foremost culinary talents, created four sumptuous courses plus appetizers to pair with six different Tree brews.
The evening started in grand Okanagan fashion with appetizers of Jumbo Prawns and Hot Wings served on the patio. Tree Brewmaster, Stefan Buhl, provided a unique cask-conditioned Kelowna Pilsner and his seasonal Hefeweizen to accompany the plethora of pre-dinner treats.The sixty guests then made their way to the private dining area where the real fun began. Up first was a dish of Steamed Outlandish Mussels with Traditional Beer Bread paired with Thirsty Beaver Amber Ale. As with all the courses, Ned Bell spoke briefly about his creation while Stefan from Tree gave a short description of the complimenting beer.
The next beer up was Tree Cutthroat Pale Ale. It perfectly complimented the Beer Battered “First of the Season” Halibut Fish & Chips with sides of sweet potato fries, citrus aioli, and a very interesting house-made ketchup. The food serving was an entire meal itself and the crowd seemed to unanimously agree that their $70 was definitely well spent.
Course three was for the hop heads in the house, myself included. A plate consisting of a USDA prime strip loin set atop a ravioli filled with beer-braised beef short ribs, bathing in a wild mushroom emulsion, was placed in front of the guests and served with Tree Hop Head India Pale Ale. Again, this dish could have been a meal in itself. It matched perfectly with the IPA.
Finally, dessert came. Most saved a little room for Cabana’s Specialty Coffee & Dough Nuts. This was also complimented with house-made beer ice cream and dark chocolate. Stefan introduced the last beer of the night, Tree’s Spy Porter—a perfect ending to a fantastic night at Cabana Bar and Grille.
During the course of the evening both Chef Ned Bell and Brewmaster Stefan Buhl made the rounds, greeting all the guests and answering questions. Both agreed that the event was a success.
Guests in attendance included members of the Okanagan Tapmasters Beer Club, proprietors of Salmon Arm’s Barley Station Brew Pub, and some newcomers to the Okanagan who were looking to meet other supporters of the Craft Beer movement. Exchanges of business cards and phone numbers took place throughout the evening in the hope that a synergy of sorts may help with the common goal of promoting the craft beer culture. This was certainly a great start.
~ Rob Trent, Kelowna, B.C.