Match of the week
Chocolate, hazelnut and rosemary truffles with Mikkeller Big Worse red wine barrel-aged barley wine
It’s hard to pick out a single pairing from last week’s brilliant pop-up beer dinner at the Independent Manchester Beer Convention (IndyManBeerCon) but I’m going for this one because it’s Chocolate Week in the UK.
The meal was devised by Laurence Tottingham of Aumbry restaurant in Prestwich in consultation with the Port Street Beer House who curated the event and with whom they have already collaborated on a couple of beer dinners.
The chocolates - or rather truffles - were flavoured with hazelnuts and rosemary and were so rich they would have defeated most wines but they found their match in an extraordinarily intense 12% barley wine aged in red barrels in the ‘Big Worse’ series by Danish brewer Mikkeller. I’d tried it earlier in the day and found it a bit overwhelming but it was just brilliant with these chocolates.
Strong beers are an underrated match with dark chocolate adding a refreshing counterpoint of bitterness rather than adding to the overall sweetness. A 12% dessert wine would have never worked - you’d have had to turn to port to get a similar effect.
PS the other sweets on the plate were apple toffee pastilles in case you're wondering.
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