Eric: Pie and Beer. A classic pairing. They go together like goat cheese and crack. Lucky for me, a great Brooklyn beer bar, Mission Dolores, had a Pie Beer Night! There were six different pies, made locally by Four and Twenty Blackbirds, with recommended beer pairings.
The bar is in Park Slope/Gowanus on 4th Ave and Carroll Street. They’ve got 21 taps, and a really cool space. It’s half inside, half outside, which is amazing in nice weather. They usually have some good stuff on tap.
I’ve been living in Brooklyn for 6 years and have always wanted to try pie from Four and Twenty Blackbirds. They’re located in Gowanus on 3rd Ave between 7th and 8th Streets. They use super local ingredients… from their website: “We source our ingredients locally and organically when possible and we incorporate natural sweeteners such as honey, molasses and unrefined sugar in our recipes. We buy our ingredients according to season and what’s best at the time of year. We use Battenkill Valley Creamery milk and source the majority of our fruit from Wilklow Orchards in upstate New York and from our local Greenmarket. Our coffee is from our neighbors, Crop to Cup, who roast just down the street from us in Gowanus.”
I started off with a slice of Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie, with a glass of Southern Tier Pumpking. As we’ve written before, Pumking is the best pumpkin beer out there. Most pumpkin beers are overly sweet, and taste artificial or chemical-ly. Pumking tastes fresh, vegetable-ly, smooth, nutty…I just love it. And this brown butter pumpkin pie was AMAZING. And together, it was the most pumpkinny pumpkin I’ve ever pumpkined. In other words, so so good.
I then had a Barrier Simple. There’s no info on it, so I assume it’s either new or rare. It’s a California common/steam beer, which is a lager made with a special kind of yeast that ferments in warm temperatures. Why? Because back in the 1800s (think railroad/gold rush), refrigeration was a luxury, and California was hot. So this was a way to make beer in the heat. The most famous example is Anchor Steam. The Barrier Simple was a little bready, very malty, not hoppy at all. It was fine, nothing crazy, and nothing that makes it stand out or worthy of a retry. I had that with a slice of Buttermilk Chess Pie. It’s a southern recipe and is pretty much just eggs, butter, sugar and vanilla. And deliciousness. They put a lot of that in there. I forgot about beer for a while and went on a pie frenzy, having slices of Maple Buttermilk Custard Pie, Sweet Potato Apple Crumble, and another Pumpkin Pie slice. That’s right, I ate A LOT of pie. Look for my new blog PieBoyz coming soon. And then soon after look for my new blog PieHeartAttackBoyz!
I really recommend both the bar and the bakery. The bakery currently has 15 pies/slices for sale, including crazy stuff like apple rose, salty honey, birch beer float, and chocolate julep. Get some pie, get some beer, and revel in the awesomeness.
- Southern Tier Brewing Company’s Pumking (thebittersandthesweet.wordpress.com)
- It’s a Pie Chart of Pies So We All Better Get to Eating (jezebel.com)
- Casting a Spell: I Learn a Lesson in Pumpkin Beer Extravagance (thisiswhyimdrunk.wordpress.com)