|Sean talking about Lagunitas|
We started out in the bar area at Blanc with some Lagunitas IPA and hors d'oeuvre of a slice of cucumber with some sort of peppadew aoili or jam on it. This was the only thing the entire evening I didn't eat. The IPA, of course, was wonderful. I talked with Nate from KC Brew Review and his sweaty friend and met Sean the Lagunitas rep who served as our host for the night as well as some other beer industry folk from around town.
Then we were seated in 2 long rows in the little special events room at the back of the Plaza Blanc. The table was decorated with malt and hops as well as Lagunitas bottle caps. I sat with one of the Gents, Andy and his wife to my left and the KC rep for Sam Adams, Louis, to my right. Sean from Lagunitas across from Louis with Chris, Shannon and Cassie (ex Flying Saucer waitress who holds the distinction of being the only person to ever quote me to me before) to Sean's right, with JB from Firestone Walker sitting next to Cassie. I only mention these people because we had a good time together. I didn't know any of these people besides Andy and JB when we sat down and now I feel like these people are my friends.
|Cured salmon with a pineapple chip|
Every time I see salmon cured in something from now on on a menu, I'm going to order it. If I ever receive salmon that tasted as good as this was again I'll be surprised. With each bite I tried to get a piece of all the components and it worked so wonderfully together. The pineapple chip made me wonder where I can get more pineapple chips. This was paired with Little Sumpin' Sumpin'. I'd like to say that it paired up great with the dish, but the food was so good I forgot to take a drink of Sumpin' Sumpin' while I was eating.
|Lamb and couscous|
|Humboldt Fog with not enough hoppy honey and almonds|
My table had some rumbles at this point, not knowing how we could get down the dessert. We were looking at our little menu cards and could see it was tiramisu and an Imperial Stout float made with Foo's custard. Cassie and Shannon maybe weigh 250 between them, it was amazing they were still able to sit. Sean was barely prepared for the dinner, thinking he was going to some run of the mill burger place and at this point was very nearly calling this the best beer dinner he'd ever been to but didn't think he could get another bite down. We were all full and very nearly miserable. Then the tiramisu came.
|Gallon o'tiramisu with Imperial Stout float|
When I saw "Big Night" in 1997 I always wondered if I could have an evening equivalent to the one featured in the movie. I did last night, the food was great, the beer wonderful but most of all it was just really really fun. I don't know if the fun was a function of the food, Blanc, Lagunitas or the people I was sitting with, I imagine it was a combination of the 4. I've always thought beer dinners were rather expensive and while the ones I've gone too have all featured really good food, the value didn't seem to be there. But for this one at Blanc, the fun portion really added so much that it wouldn't seem expensive in any way. Louie Prima's got nothing on Lagunitas and Stanley Tucci's got nothing Josh Eans.
Blanc will be having beer dinners every month featuring a different brewery. It will be worth your time to find out when the next one is and decide if it's worth it to you to attend.
Disclosure: I received a free ticket to the beer dinner from a party interested in selling more tickets to beer dinners. This did not affect my review but you can be the judge of that.