Beer and BBQ – The Perfect Pair

So how does a gal who only drinks dark beers and eschews meat end up at a BBQ hosted by a brewery that makes nothing but pilsner?

I still haven’t figured it out, but on Monday I joined Greg, and we trekked down to the Steam Whistle Brewery for a BBQ. Not just any BBQ, mind you, but the work of Team Cedar Grilling, currently the Reigning Canadian BBQ Champions. They are using Steam Whistle Pilsner in a number of their sauce recipes and the day was meant to feature some of their creations.

We started out with the Cedar-Plank Shrimp with Asiago Gratin. Served straight off the plank with a squeeze of lemon, this was the only dish I’d have eaten at home.

I live in an apartment, without a balcony, and while I eat meat at tastings for my job as a food writer, I eat only vegetarian or pescetarian at home. So the rest of the meal was all stuff I’d never normally eat. Doesn’t mean it wasn’t tasty, though.

Next up was the Parrot Sticks with Steam Whistle Chicken Sauce, served on skewers and looking very disturbing. The wings were huge and really did look like they were from a parrot. So delicious, though, with that tangy sauce.

Then… ribs. So many ribs. It was a Monday and the lunch started at 11am, so it ended up being rather poorly attended. At one point we were all filling our plates with some of the salads that had been set out and one of the chefs came over and asked us to stop. They had cooked food for about double the number of people that were there, so we all ate lots and lots of ribs.

I haven’t had spare ribs in years and I doubt I’ll ever have ones as good as that again. This particular sauce recipe, which also uses Steam Whistle Pilsner, has won awards across the country.

Then, Bolivar Beans, aka beans with pork. Apparently this recipe is in some upcoming competitions so the full ingredient list is a secret.

The finale, which took 18 hours of preparation, was a pulled pork sandwich. Sooo good, but I couldn’t finish it. I was full of porkosity, and with a couple of pilsners in there as well (perfect in the summer sun with some BBQed grub, despite my preference for stouts), I could barely roll across the street and past the CN Tower to get home.

I’m still desperately trying to get back on a mostly vegetarian diet, so it’s doubtful I’ll ever eat that much meat in one sitting again, but I get why people like to eat the little pigs. They taste good. Especially covered in beer-based sauce.