5 Course Tasting Menu // Devils Backbone Brewing Company + the Black Pig Cleveland

April 4, 2017 in beer,bloggers,cleveland,explore locally,food,NEO,Ohio,pictures,review

Last week I was fortunate enough to attend the Devils Backbone Brewing Company release party for Cleveland at Ohio City’s own Black Pig restaurant!

I’ll admit something — I had never heard of Devils Backbone Brewing Company prior to this event. In fact, although I have frequented many of the restaurants in Ohio City, The Black Pig is one of the few that I had yet to make it to! So I was extra excited.

I brought along one of my fave bloggers (and dear friend) Crystal of Eat Drink Cleveland. We arrived early so that we could chat with the DB crew (and because we’re a little OCD and wanted to ensure we found good seats). We were able to convince one of the gals from DB to sneak us a taste of their signature Vienna Lager and it was delicious and left us eagerly anticipating the rest of the beer lineup!

We sat down and awaited our first course, but it was an anything but dull wait! It just so happens the COO, Hayes Humphreys, so we got the scoop on the whole DB Brewing story! Founded in 2008 by Steven Crandall, Devils Backbone Brewing Company is located in the heartland of Virginia — at the base of a mountain in ski country! They’re a 4 star champion brewery that has slowly been expanding down the coast and through the midwest.

And then came the first course from Chef Michael Nowak of The Black Pig — Roasted Butternut squash, topped with Foie Gras, on a bed of Rye Berries.

While some may be offput from the Foie Gras, it really did give the butternut squash a buttery flavor and great contrast to the crunchiness of the squash and rye berries. It really complimented the Vienna Lager, one of 3 year round beers and also their flagship beer. As someone who gravitates towards IPAs over everything else, this lager was delicious, smooth, and I would pair with literally everything I eat.

The 2nd course was Squid Ink Agnolotti filled with Smoked Trout, topped with Mussels and Fennel, in an IPA Beer Broth.

Ya’ll. Holy. heck! I’m in love this pasta. And it paired wonderfully with the Catty Wompus, a Belgian inspired IPA. We learned that this particular IPA has gone through several name changes before this one stuck (apparently they couldn’t get the others approved — which is funny in itself!).

The 3rd course was a Pork Tasting — Bierwurst, Roasted Tenderloin, Braised Collar, Sauteed Spaetzle, Carrot, Cabbage, with a Smoked Demi Glace — and was paired with the Black Lager.

Just after I thought I couldn’t love something more than the pasta with the IPA…. in walks this pig and this lager! First of all, I am generally kind of off-put by any beers quite this dark. My immediate gut reaction is “I don’t like stouts or porters.” And, even though I’m a self-proclaimed IPA aficionado, this Black Lager was the bomb dot com. For serious. It was my favorite. More so than the TWO IPAs we tasted. Woah.

Also? This course? My dreams are made of this pork.

The 4th course — a tamale, of sorts. Braised Venison, Smoked Poblano, Ancho, and Masa De Maiz. Paired with the 8 Point IPA (another one of the 3 year-round DB offerings). All I kept thinking while I was eating this delicious tamale-ish dish was “My husband would absolutely love this.” I liked it a lot — but few things could top the 3rd course for me.

And apparently I forgot to snap a picture of the 8 Point IPA prior to drinking it. Needless to say, it was delicious.

The 5th and final course — Affogato — Espresso Ice Cream, Warm Spiced Chocolate, with Stout Malt Biscotti paired with Cocoa Bear Stout. Crystal told me at the beginning of the night that if I hated the stout, she would drink mine. And not having had dairy in ages, I thought for sure I might have to hand that off to her as well.

But it turns out I liked both! Neither were what I would choose to drink or eat in a million years (truthfully, I am not a fan of chocolate), but I devoured them nonetheless.

I left the event happy, full, and so excited to have this new craft beer available to those of us here in Northeast Ohio!

Thank you to everyone at The Black Pig and Devils Backbone for a great night out. And thanks to Brewmaster Jason Oliver and Chef Michael Nowak for an amazing tasting!



**Disclosure: I received two complimentary tickets to the 5 course tasting, courtesy of Devils Backbone Brewing Company. I was asked for nothing in return; but all of my opinions herein are wholly my own.**

{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

kristin mccarthy April 4, 2017 at 8:09 am

I am a HUGE IPA fan- these plates are stunning! God I am so freaking hungry .


Kate April 4, 2017 at 8:32 am

This sounds amazing. I’d never heard of Devils Backbone Brewing Company, either, until I saw all the Instagram posts from this event!


Erika ortega April 4, 2017 at 1:14 pm

Everything looks so delicious. Now I’m starving! Is it a local place in Ohio only or I wonder if I have one near me.. would love to try it


themotheroverload.com April 4, 2017 at 4:54 pm

That place looks amazing! Adding it to the list to try out.


Robin April 4, 2017 at 5:01 pm

Omg, this looks and sounds SO good! I have a friend who’s grossed out by squid ink pasta, but I think it’s so cool!


Rachel April 4, 2017 at 6:21 pm

So funny cause my friend I was with just does NOT like squid ink pasta either. So I ate hers 😜


Annie April 4, 2017 at 7:31 pm

This looks so fun! My husband and I have always wanted to do a beer dinner, just haven’t made it to one yet!


Yolanda April 4, 2017 at 9:59 pm

This tasting looks AMAZING! I have never even heard of rye berries before. Very eclectic.


Danielle April 5, 2017 at 7:27 am

Looks like you had a great time with great food!!


Sharon Chen April 5, 2017 at 9:38 am

These food look delicious! 5 course meals are great 🙂


Kristen April 5, 2017 at 10:15 am

All of this looks seriously yummy! Especially the 4th course!


Kira-Marie April 5, 2017 at 12:10 pm

Yum!!! This would make a perfect date night meal for the hubby and I! I wish we were closer! I need to find somewhere closer to me! Thanks for the great idea!


Katherine April 5, 2017 at 2:23 pm

I LOVE a tasting menu… this looks amazing!!!


Crystal @EatDrinkCLE April 5, 2017 at 4:19 pm

Thank you SO much for inviting me! It was an amazing event and I loved hanging out with you. I’ll even forgive you for liking and drinking the stout ha ha!


JEEYOUNG April 5, 2017 at 4:44 pm

Yum, what a fun event with so many delicious eats and drinks!


val April 5, 2017 at 10:40 pm

Yum! I love a good brew


Silvia April 5, 2017 at 11:47 pm

Yum this looks so good! I would love to check this place out!


Flo April 5, 2017 at 11:58 pm

Wow, what a treat! Everything looks delicious, especially the 3rd and 4th course.


Nicole Banuelos April 6, 2017 at 1:17 am

Oh my yum, now I’m hungry! LOL Everything looks so delicious!


justine April 6, 2017 at 9:26 pm

OH MY WORD. this tasting menu looks divine! that 4th course tamale-ish dish is calling my name. i LOVE tamales, and this is speaking to me. i’m so jealous! <3


Kelly April 7, 2017 at 3:10 pm

This looks so incredible! Yum!


Annie April 7, 2017 at 7:30 pm

The foodie in me is DROOLING over here. All of this looks so good! Hope you had a great time sampling!



Christina Shoemaker April 9, 2017 at 9:36 am

Oh what a fun night! I love that you got to try such different beers to pair with each amazing course!


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