On Saturday my brother, Dan and I went to our first Perfect Pairing! Hosted by our friends from InstaEats South Africa, the food and alcohol pairing event was held at Villain’s Ale House in Burg street, Cape Town. This was my first time visiting Villain’s in its current form, but I used to spend time at the “old” and original Fez club back in the day! So it was great to return and see what they’d done with the place.
Why Attend Perfect Pairing?
- Good value for money
- Decent alcohol
- Great food
- Nice way to meet others with similar interests
- Nice way to meet a boy or a girl! (Just saying!)
- Nice excuse to visit a new/old venue.
What’s Perfect Pairing?
Perfect Pairing celebrates quality alcohol and foods. This time the focus was on craft beer and although I’m not usually a beer drinker, it was great to taste the variety of beers available in South Africa, as well as test the food from Jason at Villain’s Ale House.
On this occasion, we were welcomed by Dean from InstaEats as well as his co-hosts, Greg & Karl from Beer Country. Beer Country celebrates everything that is beer, food and fire in South Africa. Jason from Villain’s also came out to explain each dish to us as each course progressed. This was a real man’s event and I definitely think more beer lovers must check out Beer Country (trailer below). Here’s what we had at Perfect Pairing – Villain’s Ale House:
Perfect Pairing 1: Cracking with Karoo Dust & Metal Lane Pale Ale
Round 1 was “chicharrones” (fried pork rinds) paired with pale ale. The Metal Lane Pale Ale certainly did live up to its fruity description with my nose instantly picking up the fresh scent of guavas! I’m not going to comment too much on the beer as I really don’t know much about it, but it was a light, easy to drink beer. The chicharrones appeared to have 2 kinds of fat, one white that coated your mouth (easy for the beer sparkles to wash away) and a far lighter, almost transparent bite, both covered with “Karoo Dust”.
Pairing 2: Aegir Red Rye Ale with Foccacia
This course was perfect “beer” food. A thick slab of focaccia with smokey jalapeno, bacon, with (what I thought was) feta and cheddar. This was paired with Aegir Red Rye Ale – see the colour of the beer behind the bread.
Pairing 3 – “Moerkoffie” with Smoked Brisket and Slaw.
I loved the slaw and there was a lot of potential for the brisket but it was tough as all hell. Took me about 15 minutes to cut through and eat up! The fat side was just impossible and I was rather bleak about that as I love brisket usually. The slaw was very tasty with a mustard mayo. The Moerkoffie was also my favourite of the day as it really was very delicious and would also be amazing around a fire!
Pairing 4 – Stellies Ignoble Rot Imperial IPA
Now this year was mental! It was unlike anything I’d had before, SUPER dynamic. I think it’s for serious beer drinkers because it had so many different tones and flavours going on. This was paired with Jason’s sourdough bread, pickled apples, “face bacon” (rolled and smoked pig face – personally I don’t know how you can roll a pig face but I do like cheek so I was happy) and goat’s milk cheese. The pork was wafer thin, I woulda called it pig glass rather! It was a great combination.
Pairing 5 – Drifter Stranded Coconut Ale and Coconut Milktart Filled Doughnut
You can’t go wrong with anything “Jason Bakery” so this donut was a joy. I thought the beer smelt like passionfruit, but didn’t pick up much coconut.
Here’s the full list of beers for the beer enthusiast:
My Take on Craft Beers
I find craft beers a bit like liquors – it’s nice to have one or mix them up. I couldn’t have 5 pints of the same thing. But chopping and changing, tasting a few different varieties is actually very enjoyable, especially when it’s paired with great food like we had a Villain’s.
And the fun at Perfect Pairing didn’t end with the 5 courses, Rumspringer jumped in the booth and the music continued until the Sprinkbok’s game came on at 9pm, good times!
When’s the Next Perfect Pairing
Perfect Pairings occur every 2 months so I suspect the next one will be in October sometime. Join the Perfect Pairing Facebook Page to keep in touch with their latest updates.
Thank you to Dean at InstaEats, Villain’s Ale House and the Beer Country guys for a great day out!
If you love beer, check out Beer Country soon to be on a tele near you: