Planet Cheese is a weekly blog devoted to everything cheese: products, people, places, news, and views. James Beard Award-winning journalist Janet Fletcher writes Planet Cheese from her home in Napa Valley. Janet is the author of Cheese & Wine, Cheese & Beer, and The Cheese Course and an occasional contributor to culture. Visit janetfletcher.com to sign up for Planet Cheese and view Janet’s current schedule of cheese appreciation classes.
If you want to get your Ph.D. in cheese and beer pairing, join me at Thirsty Bear, the San Francisco brewpub, for the ninth annual Cask & Queso on February 16. This is a marathon: Seventeen craft beers paired with seventeen cheeses. Good thing I’ve been in training. Even if you can’t go, you might be intrigued by some of the matches from previous years. (Don’t click if you want to take my quiz below!) The Thirsty Bear team really gets it. No wonder this event, part of San Francisco Beer Week, always sells out.
Don’t wait another minute to get your tickets. You snooze, you lose.
What to expect: 17 cask-conditioned Bay Area ales, many brewed expressly for this evening, paired with 17 artisan cheeses from everywhere. San Francisco Baking Institute provides the breads, including breads and breadsticks made with spent brewer’s grain. Plus a raclette station! Grab your glass and test your endurance. And your gluten tolerance.
Thirsty Bear owner Ron Silberstein asked me to consult on the cheese pairings this year, and I will, but his team doesn’t really need me. They know what they’re doing.
Just for fun, take my quiz. Below are five beers and five cheeses served at last year’s Cask & Queso. Match ’em up and then see how close you got to Thirsty Bear’s pairings. Hope to see you there!
1. Speakeasy Metropolis Lager
2. Magnolia Brewing Speedway Bitter
3. 21st Amendment Mega Saison
4. Freewheel Brewing Revolution Scotch Ale
5. Barebottle Honey Boo Boo Honey Ale
A. L’Amuse Brabander Gouda
B. Cowgirl Creamery Devil’s Gulch
C. Colston Bassett Stilton
D. Landaff Creamery Landaff
E. Keen’s Cheddar