The fourth annual Cod and Cask Festival at the Schlafly Tap Room begins tonight. Last night, I was lucky enough to get a sneak peek at the amazing food and beer that will be served at this very fun event.
Icelandic Chef Hákon Örvarsson and his team created a number of very yummy dishes that included honey and lemon shrimp, roasted scallops with mushrooms, shrimp and cod croquettes with mustard sauce, pan-roasted cod with horseradish and creamed barley, and baked cod and potatoes with béchamel sauce (called plokkfiskur).
But, the pièce de résistance (I’m not sure how to say that in Icelandic) was the 77-pound cod that was deep-fried to a crispy, golden brown. Yes, you read that right … 77 pounds! (If you don’t believe me, pics from previous festivals are on display on the Schlafly website.) It was the biggest fish I’ve ever seen … and one of the tastiest!
Of course, the great food was accompanied by great beer (it is Schlafly after all). I sampled both the cask-conditioned IPA and the cask-conditioned English Brown Ale, both of which were excellent and went great with the food. I wasn’t familiar with cask-conditioned ales, and if you aren’t either, here’s a bit from the Schlafly website:
“Cask Ale or “Real Ale” is beer the old fashioned way—unfiltered and naturally carbonated. Schlafly Brewers take one of our traditional style ales and “dry hop” the beer (like adding a tea bag of additional hops) to add extra flavor. The beer is then put into a stainless steel cask with finings to clarify it and is sealed a wooden bung.”
However they make it, it’s great. Get yourself to the Cod and Cask Festival this weekend … you won’t regret it!
[A separate note to SnS … thank you for a wonderful evening … our “Tripple Trappist Terror Tour” was something I won’t soon forget!]