Between the Denver Rare Beer Tasting, Crooked Stave's What the Funk!? Festival, and GABF itself, we tried a plethora of outstanding brews, including some of the rarest beers on earth. Here's the rundown on our six favorites.
'Goose Island' on Serious Eats
Great food doesn't open its door to suggestions; good food, however, leaves that door slightly ajar.
Big stouts are a staple in the American craft brewing scene. These robust, flavorful, high alcohol beers are typically released in the winter months, and each year sees a growing number of variations on the style. Some hit the mark, others...don't. Here we've pulled together 5 of the best new stouts from across the country.
Stepping inside the Goose Island Beer Co.'s Fulton Street brewery, I was struck by the sweet, bready aroma that saturated the warm, humid air. The heat was intense—the brewery runs 24/7 to meet demand—but the smell was welcoming. Goose Island's communications manager, Mark Mahoney, was leading the way; he had invited me to visit for a rare private tour of the facility, which is not typically open to the public.
As I found out recently, the Goose Island Wrigleyville Brewpub is a surprisingly solid option before or after a Cubs game. But as good as the restaurant's renditions of bar-menu classics may be (especially for the area), there is no question that Goose Island's Clybourn Brewpub steps up the quality of the service, the atmosphere, and, most importantly, the food. That's definitely true of the the massive Duck Reuben ($14), which trades the familiar corned beef for cured slices of duck.
If you want to try Black Tuesday, Kate the Great, Sexual Chocolate, Dark Lord, Surly Darkness, or a number of other great "cult" imperial stouts, you should probably prepare yourself for the possibility of waiting in line on release day, trolling Internet forums looking for trades, buying lottery tickets in hopes of winning a chance to buy a bottle, or paying incredibly inflated prices on eBay. But rest assured, there are plenty of top-tier imperial stouts available that require a lot less hoop-jumping to snag a bottle.
While we can argue about which theoretical president-themed restaurant would be the best (the Thomas Jefferson one, probably), there does happen to be a Chicagoan in the White House with some serious eating credentials. These are just a few of the places around Chicago where you can eat like the current president.
The first thing I tried at the Goose Island Shrimp House were the fried frog legs. The last time I saw frog legs was in high school biology class, and I'd never eaten any before. My dad bought some once. My mom wouldn't cook them, and made him throw them away.
Goose Island Mild Winter is malty and creamy, with rye for a touch of spice. The crisp finish may be a little sour and bitter for some, but there's enough dry-cocoa and toffee richness to balance it. I'm glad this beer doesn't veer toward sweetness; it's ideal for pairing with a grilled steak or lentil soup (especially if you've made it with a meaty ham hock). Have you tried Goose Island's Mild Winter? What do you think of Goose Island beers in general these days?
Just a few things we've been reading and thinking about lately—is loving rosé a reaction against demanding wine? Is Anheuser-Busch planning to extend Goose Island's 312 series to a city near you? Discuss.
Greg Hall of Goose Island Beer Company makes beers that are delicious on their own and even more brilliant with food. We caught up with him to chat about his exciting new sour beer releases, his favorite beer-and-food pairings, and his thoughts on where craft beer is heading.
Oatmeal? Check. Lactose? Yep. Espresso? Why not? You can add all kinds of ingredients to a stout. This week, your Serious Beer team tasted a wide variety of stouts from American and Canadian craft brewers so we could let you know which ones are delicious.
Chicago has an authentic taqueria on almost every corner, and at least half of those are authentically bad. But, with so many good options left over, the last thing you’d ever do is go snooping around sport bars and brewpubs for a good taco. And, I guess it’s true, I wasn’t looking for good tacos in those places, but in the course of my regular eating, err research, I’ve come across two extraordinarily good tacos. The first is the fish taco at Goose Island Clybourn, the flagship restaurant of Chicago’s local super-brewery. As of last year, the state of the fish taco in Chicago was so miserable, that Tribune scribe, and its current Cheeseburger Bureau Chief, Kevin Pang, launched a...
SE contributor Michael Nagrant, oh he of Hungry Magazine, on the revamped menu at Chicago's Goose Island: "And the pork's put to great use, maybe best on a grilled ham and cheese topped with a runny fried egg on pretzel...