Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Barley's Angels Colorado organized a chocolate and beer pairing at 12 Degree Brewing Co located in Louisville, CO. The chocolate was provided by Robin Autorino of Robin Chocolates, a local business from Longmont, Co.

Jon Howland is owner/brewer of 12 Degree Brewing. He was a home brewer for many years and brewed Belgian style ales. The name "12 Degree" is the European Plato scale that measures the density of beer before fermentation. 12 Degree is a brewpub that serves flatbread pizzas and Belgian style frites. "I describe it as a brewery with the food truck parked inside," Jon Howland said in an interview in the Westword blog.
   The building is historical because it was once a temperance hall!

Robin has been making chocolates for 7 years.  She went to culinary school after a stint in the technology field and after a 14-year career in the military.  She has been professionally making chocolates for 3 years at her retail store, Robin Chocolates. Robin mentioned at the event that she never thought of drinking beer with chocolates.
Robin Autorino and Jon Howland.

Three months ago, Jon Howland decide to sell chocolates in the taproom and ended up choosing Robin Chocolates.  He and Robin spent some time researching the right pairings for this event.

Robin and Jon described the chocolate and beer before each course.

Soleil Saison and Vanilla Pineapple chocolate.
The layers of the Vanilla Pineapple
The first pairing was Vanilla Pineapple with Soleil Saison. The chocolate is 62% with a pineapple pate de fruit layered with Tahitian bean ganache. The Soleil Saison is a classic farmhouse ale that is 6.5% ABV. It's dry with tropical fruit and pepper notes. This was amazing pairing with the chocolate melting in your mouth and the saison complimented the lingering flavors of the chocolate.

Second course was a pairing of Chocolate Caramel Fleur De Sel with Nemesis Dubbel. The caramel is layered with chocolate caramel and sea salt in a dark chocolate shell. The Dubbel is a 7% ABV dark smooth ale with orange and caramel notes. The chocolate complimented the beer with having similar flavors.
Nemesis Dubbel and Chocolate Caramel
Fleur De Sel.
The gooey caramel.

The third course was the chocolate called Africa because it’s an 85% African cocoa in a dark chocolate shell. Very rich and not as sweet as the other chocolates in the other pairings. The beer paired with Africa was the Midnight Fog Quad, a 9.5% ABV that had a molasses and brown sugar flavors.  The pairing was a contrast between the sweeter ale and the less sweet chocolate.

Midnight Fog Quad and Africa chocolate.

For an added bonus we were given two more chocolates that paired with the Midnight Fog Quad. One of the chocolates was a half ganache middle with half caramel with a reduction of the Midnight Fog with coffee and the shell was sprayed with edible silver. The second chocolate was a square caramel with a coffee beer reduction. Both of them paired well with the Quad. 
Silver and Caramel Square chocolates.

The chocolate and beer pairing was so much fun and and I met some wonderful ladies.  This event paired my favorite food and beverage! And with that kind of pairing, you'd be hard pressed to get it wrong.  A tasty event and I like to thank Deborah Cameron for organizing it through Barley's Angels Colorado. Thank you Jon Howland and Robin Autorino for providing the tasty morsels and beer.

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