Wednesday 11 March 2009

FAB POW! Thornbridge Halcyon with Extra Mature Cheddar

Here we go. A hip new serial feature for Pencil&Spoon which was dreamt up yesterday while I was having a run. FAB POW! The Food and Beer Pairing of the Week!
Simple really, I just say a great pairing that I’ve had and you can tell me any cool ones that you’ve had. We can share the wealth of eating and drinking under a nicely onomatopoeic title that makes it sound camply cool like a comic book superhero fighting the bad guy (in fact it sort of is like a superhero and his sidekick, beer and food I mean, fighing together to save the world).
I’m starting with a themed choice as today I am going up to Thornbridge Brewery for the day (I'll be on the train when this auto-posts itself at 9a.m). FAB POW! Thornbridge Halcyon with Extra Mature Cheddar. The beer's a 7.7% IPA and it’s got that essential feature of the heavily-hopped beer: it drives you crazy wanting more. It’s a rollercoaster of sweetness and bitterness, one follows the other in a vicious circle, and it’s addictive. The caramel base lies beneath the citrusy fruit smack. Put this up against the kind of cheese which makes you wince with its strength (you know the one, it makes you mouth pucker) and you get a heavenly match. The cheese fills your mouth and the beer flows over it, mixing on your palate, lifting it up and away in different directions; tangy, sweet, salty, sharp, bitter, more sweet. And it’s BIG. It’s uncompromising. But it’s brilliant. The beer is fruitier and the cheese creamier. And don’t just take my word for it, here is what Kelly Ryan from Thornbridge says. And if you want the beer then Beermerchants are selling it. It’s one of the very best IPAs you can buy in the UK (Beermerchants have also got Bracia and Jaipur which are stunners). There it is. FAB POW! done. Anyone had anything good recently? I wanna know!


  1. My Girlfriend made some orange frosted cupcakes. I thought they'd go with a Punk IPA and strawberries and it was great. The lemon and orange zest in the frosting with the C-hops was a no brainer.

  2. I live in the Czech Republic, and we have a very strong, dark 24 degree beer here which I immensely enjoy with dark Toblerone :-)

  3. Hi Mark,

    Expected something more revolutionary from you than IPA and cheddar.
    How about
    Brooklyn Local No1 with Fish & chorizo stew.
    Mikkeller Monk's Elixir with Pigeon breast and beetroot salad.
    Schneider Weisse with Fish and banana curry.
    Roast Chicken with Trois Monts.
    Vanilla Cheesecake topped with fruli coulis with a BrewDog Tokyo.
    Creme Brulee with La Chouffe.

  4. Evilsoc, cool combo! I'll give that a try - I've had Punk with strawberries and I like that.

    Kacenka, that sounds great! We decided last night that Thornbridge Bracia (a thick 9% beer brewed with bitter chestnut honey) would go great with toblerone!

    And BA, loving your work! some awesome pairings there! I've got more adventurous ones to come, don't worry :)