We thought we were extremely lucky to get an invite to the Ex Novo Beer Dinner in Corrales. I love Ex Novo’s beer. I think they produce some of the best beer in the state. Although I might not like some of the beer styles, I have found that all the beer is very balanced and well crafted.
Being a vegetarian, I am always skeptical of beer dinners. I need more than a dressed up salad for dinner. That said, I was blown away at the quantity and quality of the food that was presented to me at this dinner.
To start, when I checked in, I received a plastic glass with the Perle Haggard Pilsner, a German Style Pilsner. That was a wonderful way to cleanse my palate. It was just a small intro of what was to come.
Our first course was roasted golden beets with burrata cheese and a coriander honey vinaigrette. Wow! what a way to start a dinner. The beets and cheese tasted as good as they looked. This course was perfectly paired with the De-Vine Wild Ale fermented on Malbec grapes. What an incredible pairing! It was spot on.
Our second course was equally outstanding. We had a furikake (an Asian spice) cauliflower that was teriyaki marinated and crispy fried. Ok, I had never had a furikake cauliflower before or anything with furikake. I had to look up what furikake was while I was eating. Not that it stopped me from digging right in. I think I could eat shoe leather that had furikake spread on it. The take-out container was a brilliant touch. The cauliflower was perfectly cooked. This dish of perfection was paired with the extremely good and popular Intergalactic Pale Reality which is a Pale Ale. Once again, a perfect pairing!
Pale Ales are not my thing but as I have said before it was a perfectly balanced beer.
The third course consisted of portobello mushroom with activated charcoal and burnt allium powder served with a sweet potato puree. Ok, our meat eating counter parts had this with a wagyu beef. I thought that ours was much better because it wasn’t as heavy and you could really enjoy the two different flavor profiles. Yes, the portobello and the sweet potato was a wonderful pairing as was the Ex Novo beer, the Ruminator which was a doppelbock. Wow!!! Everything went so well together. Another winning pairing.
For dessert, we had a pumpkin spice donut with bourbon caramel and candied pepitas. I am not a donut lover, but this cake style donut was delicious. Of couse, the beer pairing of the Black Barleywine was a complete winner.
Hats off to Joel Gregory of Ex Novo Brewery. He makes incredible beer. Also too, Chef Javier Montano! Chef Montano is looking to open a brick and mortar establishment. I will be waiting and watching for that.
Ex Novo is located at 4895 Corrales Road in Corrales, New Mexico. They are usually open from Sunday-Thursday Noon-9pm and Friday and Saturday noon-10pm. Phone number: 505.508.0547.