It’s been ages since our last post but since it is the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival (www.melbournefoodandwine.com.au/) I thought i should do a post, especially because of the amazing meal I had yesterday at Josie Bones (http://josiebones.com/).
Josie Bones is in Collingwood and is run and owner by Chris Badendoch who previously appeared on MasterChef. You can tell the place is a labour of love of Chris as the menu is full of his ‘nose to tail’ style of cooking and food uses, and his other love, beer, is supremly catred to. There are over 300 beers on the menu and the beer menu reads like a book rather than just a couple pages. I was in heaven when I first walked in!
The event itself was called Wild Earth, Wild Beer with the focus of the beers being a style known as Lambics; aka sours. Personally not many people, except for dedicated beer enthusiasts have heard of or tried Lambis, and this was my first experience with them. Essentially Lambics are made using naturally occuring yeasts in the air/wood/environment and ferment spontaneously and they have a sour taste and can also include fruit added in the brewing process. I’m sure a brewer could give a much more detailed explanation and i was way out of my depth talking to some of the others at the event.
Anyway, onto the food and beer itself. First up we had prawn dumplings paired with a style of beer specifically known as a Berliner Weisse, it was the only Australian beer and was a Doctors Orders (http://doctorsordersbrewing.com) Cephalopod. We were actually sitting on the same table as Doc from Drs Orders so he was able to give us a heap of info, but essentially to gain the colour they used squid ink, hence the name. There was less than 1500l brewed so this rally is brewing on a micro scale. The beer itself was quite crisp and refreshing with just a hint of sour on the back. It was probably my favourite beer of the day, and not just cause we were sitting with Doc.
Food wise my favourtie course was the Confit Pork Belly with pickled peach. Pairing wise, the best was the Twice-baked gruyere and goats cheese souffle,paired with a Cantillon Cuvee St-Gilloise (very hard to get outside of Belgium I am told) and a Boon Oude Gueze. These were the sourest of the beers and matched and cut-through perfectly with the relatively strong flavours and oil in the cheese souffle.
A special mention has to be given to dessert also. A Boon Framboise marshmellow sandwhiched between chewy chocolate biscuts and served with the same beer used to make the marshmellow. Amazing!
If you are in Collingwood or Melbourne and want to check out some new beers, or simply want some amazing foods that will be expertly paired with beers (ever if you are not a beer drinker they will have something you would barely even think was a beer when drinking), i would strongly suggest you check out Josie Bones. We will definitely be going back.