#BrewFood: Shisa Nyama meets Beer
Summer is upon us, and for me, the best summer days are those spent sipping a cold beverage with good company. Paired with good food, ciders and beers are my favourite go-to thirst quenchers. I visited the Beerhouse in Long Street in the city CBD to try out their new #BrewFood menu, a fusion of food and beer offering.
If you are interested in beer and would like to learn about the types available, I recommend the Beerhouse.
Having opened in 2014, the establishment is popular with local beer lovers and tourists. They also have a branch in Johannesburg and Pretoria.
Their outstanding service and the arty and chic decor of yellow and brown makes for a homely and vibey hub for socialising and intimate events.
Beerhouse has teamed up with The Ultimate Braai Master winner and Laat Die Potte Prut presenter, Piet Marais and his team, to create a food menu - combining the best of both worlds - resulting in #BrewFood.
Beerhouse co-owner and “head dreamer” Randolf Jorberg says: “You think you’ve tasted it all? Think again.
“Just when we thought that food couldn’t possibly be reinvented, along we came with #BrewFood. Beerhouse’s library of beers has always created a unique experience of exploration and discovery with our 99 bottles of beer on the wall and 25 on tap.”
My early dinner started with a Duvel, a Belgian strong ale beer. With a 8.5% alcohol content, it comes with citrus aromas and a zesty taste a perfect combination of a thirst quencher and aperitif.
For our meal, a friend and I shared the Beerhouse Meat Platter. It consists of beer-brined smoked half chicken, brisket, BBQ pulled pork, spare ribs and boerewors. It is served with a side of pap, chips, chakalaka and a side of slaw. The chicken is succulent and melts in your mouth.
The platter was enough for two and was the perfect partner for soaking up the strong beers we were drinking. Desserts was several beers which included another Belgian beer, the strong pale ale La Chouffee, the sparkling fruit beer Liefmans Fruitesse and my new favourite, the Moer Koffie Stout, a Fraser’s Folly and Beer Country collab that carries-off a South African legend of strong fire-side coffee in condensed milk, resulting in a delicious combination.
I enjoyed the experience, from the relaxed atmosphere to the food and beer.
I really love the fact that the beverages on offer are more than enough to satisfy an inexperienced beer drinker and the professional.
Marais explained more about the beer and food pairing: “Beer is actually a food product and brewing shares many techniques similar to cooking.
Beer’s raw ingredients include malted barley, hops and yeast; all of which provide flavour profiles that can enhance food in tremendous ways. Beer can therefore be used to season, pickle and even ferment food.
“Smoking meats is a part of the culture in America and its growth and popularity is closely linked to the craft beer revolution that has become a growing trend in American culinary culture. But we’ve taken this way further than anyone else in the world has. We’ve come up with dishes and preparation methods that truly embrace the word ‘revolutionise’.”
The cornerstone of #BrewFood is the smoker in which meats are smoked, providing wood-smoked flavours that combine perfectly with beer.
The “Beer Whisperer” Murray Slater, co-owner and group operations manager of Beerhouse, said: “South Africa is a meat loving nation with a proud history of outdoor fire cooking - whether braaiing, making a potjie or shishanyama.
“The culture of sharing meat around a fire is engrained into our communities from all cultural backgrounds and forms a vital symbolic part of social gatherings and celebrations.”
Other menu highlights, with the #BrewFood twist, include unique takes on bitterballen, chilli poppers, beerchos (Beerhouse’s version of nachos), pulled pork sandwiches and brisket sandwiches.
And beer for dessert? The Beerhouse Beer Float includes milk stout, chocolate ganache, salted caramel and bourbon ice cream, whipped cream, cherries and marshmallows to top off the meal.
* For more information, visit http://www.beerhouse.co.za/ Beerhouse is open from 11am to late, seven days a week, in Cape Town (Long Street), Johannesburg and Pretoria .