A special event demands a special beer. And using that logic, DioNicEss X “Coming of Age” will be one hell of a craft beer dinner because of the still unfinished beer being crafted by Beachwood brewmaster Julian Shrago, which is already a great big complex brew.
And System of a Stout has not been an easy beer to brew. It has moved from one tank to another so it has been a logistical challenge to keep track of while also brewing the other great Beachwood beers that grace the taps in both Long Beach and Seal Beach.
But Shrago admits, “I like a challenge” and this beer certainly is that. And then there are the ingredients. This is one souped up beer. Built on the chassis, so to speak, of the Tovarish stout that was on tap earlier this year. This has oats, blackstrap molasses and cardamom along with five liters of 25 year old Armenian brandy soaked oak chips (for the beer to age on) and 21 pounds of a special roast of Portola Coffee from roaster/owner Jeff Duggan in the mix as well.
You will see very limited amounts outside of the DioNicEss X (only 7 barrels were made) and your only chance to get the limited special edition growler filled with System of a Stout is to get one of the remaining tickets to the event which is on Sunday, June 10th and costs $80.00.
But this is no simple pairing (as good as those can be). This is aged beers with aged food. There will be salt curing, air drying, fermenting, canning and pickling going on. So the food will be on the extreme edge but with Gabe Gordon at the wheel, you know the food will be high quality like pickled Japanese eggplant and dry aged rib eyes.
If you are a fan of big, bold complex beers then I highly suggest sampling System of a Stout. I have found Shrago’s beers to always be very balanced even when loaded up with hops so I cannot wait to see what the fully aged version of this complex monster of a beer will be like. And as if you needed more encouragement, while supplies of “SoaS” outside of the DioNicEss dinner, $2.00 will be donated to the Real Medicine Foundation for each glass purchased.
The Beer of the Week is an award winner from Beachwood BBQ and Brewing, Foam Top Cream ale, which just took home a gold at the recent World Beer Cup (though not in the cream ale category). It is a delicate beer that pours a pretty yellow and highlights American 2-row malt and German hops and is perfect for sipping on the patio at the Long Beach outpost of Beachwood.
Your Homeworkthis week is to hop in your jalopy and finish American Craft Beer Week with a bang. And if you haven’t even started, well then you have already missed out on some fun. So wherever you may be in Los Angeles, celebrate the craft of American beer. Might I suggest the Session Beer Festival at Eagle Rock’s taproom on Saturday.
Read more of Sean Inman’s writing on his blog, Beer Search Party.