Beer Magazine


May 17, 2010

Beer Dinner Report – Greene King and CiaoCristina

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Written by: BeerMagDerek

Brewery-Green King
Brewer- John Bexton
Restaurant- CiaoCristina Burbank, Ca
Beers sampled at dinner– Abbot Ale, Old Speckled Hen (bottle and widget), Hen’s Tooth, Old Suffolk, Wexford Irish Ale, Export IPA, Ruddles County
Beer dinners allow us beer drinkers to wear a monocle, break out the fancy clothes and appear to be civilized. Anytime we can attend a beer dinner we put our drinking/eating hats on and make the trip. In this case it was about 70 miles to Burbank to one of the newest restaurants that feature great food and craft beer.

CiaoCristina is a an Italian joint a that loves craft beer (as well as a full lineup of spirits). The exterior can’t be missed and inside it’s cozy and warm with a nice bar section. The dinner was setup through Total Beverage Solutions and more specifically Greene King brewery from the UK. Many, like me, probably didn’t put the name to their most famous beer in the US, Old Speckled Hen, but much like Fat Tire and New Belgium you quickly remember once you see the can.

CiaoCristina paired their food with the variety of English style beers in the portfolio and all where delicious. But enough with the babble let’s check out the pairings…which in true Italian style where rich and filling!

Course one was simply a palate teaser of the beer. Wexford Irish Ale.

Pairing One
Parmesan Cheese and Abbot Ale
Pairing Two
Mushroom Pizza and Ruddles County
Pairing Three
Arugula and Gorgonzola Salad with a lemon dressing and Export IPA
Pairing Four
Mushroom and cheese lasagna with Hen’s Tooth
Pairing Five
Braised beef over soft polenta and Parmesan in Old Speckled Hen (Bottle)
Pairing Six
Bread Pudding and Old Suffolk Oak Aged Ale

During the dinner the beer and food were explained very well and why the food was paired.

Beer Comments–English beer is much milder and easier to drink than many American counterparts. This sometimes is a surprise to those who haven’t had traditional English style beers. Their “wild” really might be considered mild in the US, but that doesn’t’ mean their beers are bad. In fact, it is refreshing to have a fuller flavor light beer that doesn’t ruin your taste buds every sip.

The food is great. The menu is priced very well (I think most dishes topped out at about $15) and since they make many of the items in-house it’s a nice place to have some good beer, eat some good food and eat with friends. We highly recommend visiting CiaoCristina for lunch/dinner or just some beers with friends.

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