I was extremely lucky this evening to be invited to a special dinner at Deepwood, a new restaurant in Columbus that only opened at the end of June. It is on high street at the bottom of the Short North (near the convention center) so within walking distance for me. I had not been there, but had heard good reviews so I was excited to try it. I had also seen the menu for the beer tasting event and it sounded intriguing and delicious.
The menu was devised by the sous chef Colin Vent, who is in charge of the beer list at the restaurant. The menu was designed to showcase some of the beers of the Rogue Ales brewery, based in Newport Oregon and highlight interesting beer and food pairings. Colin did an excellent job of designing the menu and many of the food and wine selections complemented each other perfectly. I have seen some of the Rogue beers in stores, but was not aware of how wide their range of beers is.
There were some wonderful, varied and unusual flavors. The quail (not pictured because mine wasn’t that photogenic) was very sweet and tender and went well with the two beers it was served with, including one called smoke ale that was very reminiscent of lapsang souchon. I couldn’t really taste the yellow gingered beets (they were tiny) which was a shame because I love beets and ginger, but I might try the combination myself.
The red cabbage slaw was one of my favorite dishes and was sort of sauerkrauty but less vinegary and more like a baked winter red cabbage dish than a slaw. It was seasoned with red wine, red wine vinegar and cumin and fennel seeds. It must have had something to sweeten it as well. The squash flower was stuffed with a light cream cheese mixture and maybe tarragon. There was a lot of cheese on the menu which is interesting because the default always seems to be wine and cheese. The Chimay went really well with the hazelnut brown ale which is not surprising as the monks that make the Chimay cheese (in Belgium) are also famous for their beer. The rogue smokey blue cheese (not related to the brewery) tasted bacony and was very salty and also brought out the hazelnut in the beer.
The sweets were all really interesting – the pate de fruits had a real after burn, the mousse was very light and very smokey (tasted much better than its appearance suggests) and one of the truffles was topped with a sprinkling of chipotle salt which really made it. The truffles were an intense dark chocolate, a little spicy smokey and not overly sweet. Fantastic.
My favorite beer was the morimoto black soba ale, which surprised me as I usually don’t like dark beers, but it has a lighter body and is made from buckwheat and was very smooth. I also liked the hazelnut and the smoke ale probably came in number 3.
Interesting fact I learned this evening. Beer color is completely unrelated to alcohol content and Guinness is actually very low in alcohol, similar to Coors light, about 4%.
I would definitely go back to Deepwood. As well as the food, I liked the ambience and decor – and walkability is always a bonus.
Many thanks to Lisa – again.