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Food & Wine gets it (right)

Russian River Brewing barrel roomThis is beer and food done right, mostly for the food and wine crowd.

Maybe precisely for that crowd since it is in the June issue of Food & Wine magazine (the grilling issue).

In “The Keg vs. the Cork in Sonoma” chef San Yoon of the Father’s Office in Santa Monica, one of Southern California’s first “good beer” bars, takes writer Ray Isle on a tour of Sonoma County breweries.

There are plenty of recipes, attractive photos of beer and food, and inviting descriptions of what the beers taste like. A picture of Yoon sitting on barrels at Russian River Brewing in Santa Rosa (rather small if you already clicked on the link above) is a striking full page in the magazine.

(A quick aside. The barrel room at Russian River isn’t quite as sexy as the magazine makes it appear. The photo here is more what it looks like to the human eye on an average day. But barrels sure do give beer some razzmatazz. Imbibe magazine ran just a killer two-page picture of Jolly Pumpkin’s Ron Jeffries in his barrel room in the its March/April issue. Barrels are suddenly [almost]) as cool as babes in T-shirts.)

Food and Wine even includes an online bonus: An interview with Russian River owner/brewer Vinnie Cilurzo.


11 Responses to Food & Wine gets it (right)

  1. SteveH May 15, 2007 at 12:34 pm #

    This article was discussed a little over at BA. It was brought up that Mr. Yoon needs to be shown the light on good BBQ brisket! Even Famous Dave’s has a wonderfully succulent brisket.

  2. Stan Hieronymus May 15, 2007 at 12:45 pm #

    Steve, this is not Appellation Barbecue ;>)

  3. SteveH May 15, 2007 at 12:57 pm #

    Hmm, what’s the first word in that headline..?

    Besides, it’s disheartening to see someone so respectable in beer not “getting it” in other good cuisine. I wonder what he thinks of Schlenkerla?

  4. Stephen Beaumont May 15, 2007 at 1:58 pm #

    Without wanting to appear the killjoy, F&W only got it half right, in my humble estimation. The “right” part was, indeed, the Sonoma story, which actually mimics a tour I made a few years ago. The “not so right” part, however, was editor-in-chief Dana Cowin’s story about Philadelphia’s restaurant scene, which managed to laud that city’s neighbourhood BYOBs, and rightly so, but at the same time completely ignore the spectacular beer scene Philly has to offer.

    Now, I’m not one of those people who insists on seeing beer in every story, but to ignore places like The Standard Tap and Monk’s in a story where she talks about “a city that inspires palates every day and brings a sense of fun to the adventure of eating out” is, to my mind, a pretty major omission.

    Back on the plus side, did you notice that they also have 13 beers listed on page 18, where they highlight all the beverages paired with the recipes in the magazine? So maybe that’s 2/3 right and only 1/3 not so right.

  5. Stan Hieronymus May 15, 2007 at 2:00 pm #

    Steve H, I must admit that I didn’t understand the the brisket comment at all. Perhaps a sign that I wouldn’t necessarily want to spend time in West Texas with Yoon.

    The subhead on the story says that Yoon “will always choose ale over Reisling.” Doesn’t exactly come across as a beer and wine approach.

    Then there is the fact that he says if you like fresh beer you should have a keg in your kitchen. Unless you go through a lot of beer that might be a problem.

    I didn’t say the story is perfect.

  6. SteveH May 15, 2007 at 2:25 pm #

    “I didn’t say the story is perfect.”

    I hope I hadn’t implied you had, I was just surprised at the brisket (and BBQ) opinion the first time I read the story, considering Yoon seems to have a good grasp on other gastronmical pleasures.

    AFA a keg in your kitchen, there are a lot of RealBeer and BeerAdvocate members with kegerators. Not for me, though. At least not until I win that lottery!

  7. SteveH May 15, 2007 at 2:26 pm #

    To Stephen’s observation: I’d love to see that paired listing. I may have to pick up a copy of F&W.

  8. Stan Hieronymus May 15, 2007 at 3:08 pm #

    When you do you will also see there is a lot of great barbecue stuff (even a recipe for brisket).

  9. Alan May 15, 2007 at 7:27 pm #

    What this nation needs (yours too) are good one gallon home brew kegs so that one day when we are free to enjoy a keg in every home, when we let the call for good craft beer ring ring out from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and have a good beer and maybe good BBQ, too…well, that will be good.

  10. Stan Hieronymus May 16, 2007 at 5:32 am #

    Alan – for now we have growlers (just have to get through that one gallon with good speed) and in New Mexico we have excellent (and moist) brisket.

    Around here, you can brighten your morning (while not even consuming) with the smell of a smokehouse firing up or fresh wort reaching a boil.

    (Steve H – now we can talk Appellation Barbecue)

  11. Loren May 16, 2007 at 8:25 am #

    Pretty good interview for a winecentric magazine. Much better coverage for Food & Wine too, who are usually outshined in the beer area by Gourmet.

    And the barrel room not sexy? Did you ask Nat Decants?


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