B.C. Beer Blog

The who, what, where, when, why, and how of B.C. craft beer

Granville Island Gourmands

with 3 comments

Lions Winter Ale Short Rib

In BC, we’re slowly seeing a growing understanding of the role beer can play beyond the swill of choice for frat parties and sports bars. No longer are brewmasters dinners confined to just brewpubs and beer geeks. There are an increasing number of restaurants teaming up with their local brewery to offer something that Belgians have known for a long time.

Given the great success vintners have had at marketing and educating the public about wine and food pairing, it may take some time for the brewers to catch up. But if the wine-obsessed Italians can come around to the idea of pairing food with beer, we eventually will too.

A further step in that direction in BC was the “Winter Ales and Fare” cooking competition hosted by Granville Island Brewingand the Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts on November 3. Four teams of two PICA students — one culinary, one pastry — had to create an entrée and a dessert using GIB Lions Winter Ale.

PICA Students Set Up at GIB Tap Room

Each team was given $20 and 45 minutes to gather core ingredients from the Granville Island Public Market; one more hour for cooking, preparation, and mise en place at PICA; and 15 minutes to bring everything to the GIB Tap Room for final presentation to the judges. Judging the competition was PICA Executive Chef, Julian Bond, GIB brewmaster, Vern Lambourne, Chester Carey, Canada’s first Certified Cicerone, and Barry MacDonald from The Team 1040.

In front of a full house, each student had to present their dish after plating and serving the judges. A different person from the audience was also selected to sample each dish. After a parade of mouthwatering creations, the judges’ results were tallied.

The top spot went to Felix Maristany and Jazmin Villarreal who, respectively, made a Granville Island Winter Ale Gumbo and Lions Winter Ale Beer & Dessert Risotto Crumble (see the Love Good Beer blog for recipes). Jazmin and Felix will have their Lions Winter Ale creations featured on the PICA restaurant menu and in the bakeshop.

This collaboration between PICA and GIB is an excellent idea that is beneficial for both parties. GIB cultivates young chefs in cooking and pairing with beer, which may spread to the restaurants they work in and their social circle. PICA bolsters its part-time beer course by demonstrating how beer, not only wine, can be an excellent partner with fine food.

I look forward to seeing what next year’s crop of students will come up with. Until then, here are some photos to whet your appetite:

3 Responses

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. […] been very impressed with the Granville Island Brewing / Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts “Winter Ales and Fare” cooking competition, I’m pleased to announce another food and beer contest comes right […]

  2. I feel like the introduction to this entry was the beginning of our conversation yesterday! So true. So glad you reported on this event, looks like there was lots of local talent. We’re lucky to be in Vancouver!


    November 19, 2009 at 6:25 pm

    • Yes, Mijune, it’s just an introduction; so much more to talk about…


      November 20, 2009 at 12:37 am

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: