Update: Some great things happened today that we’d like to acknowledge, so we’re posting them here. Happy Birthday Harry’s, you’re one year old today. Congratulations Hedy on your delicious spread in the Miami Herald.
Let’s face it, drinking bourbon is great but without a little base of food in your belly things can get a little fuzzy in a hurry. Not being much of a wine guy myself, I prefer to instead pair bourbon with what I’m eating for the night. With that said, here are some of my favorite items on the MGFD menu along with some bourbons and bourbon cocktails to pair with them.
Crispy Pork Belly : The Redemption Old Fashioned
An Old Fashioned is a sweeter bourbon cocktail but made “Steve Style” with Redemption High Rye Bourbon & no muddled fruit it also has some nice spice to it with a little bite. I like the way it pairs with the similar sweet/spicy/savory flavors of this pork belly dish.
Slow Roasted Shortrib : Bulleit Proof Manhattan
MGFD Beverage Director, Ryan Goodspeed, puts some nice accents on the classic Manhattan with marinated cherries speared by a branch of rosemary. I like the way the spicy rye flavor of Bulliet Bourbon works with the rosemary and beef short rib which usually has a nice sear from being finished on the grill.
Anything @ Brunch : Sonny Rollins
When Goodspeed told me about this one, I didn’t get it. I thought the subtleness of an 80proof, laid back bourbon like Basil Hayden would be lost in a mixed drink. Boy, was I wrong! The spiciness of the rye content in Basil Hayden shines ever so slightly above the lavender tea and orange blossom honey. I’ve now declared the Sonny Rollins as the best day drinking cocktail ever and it’s become a staple of my Sunday diet. Check it out for yourself, you won’t be disappointed.
Cheese of the Week : Bourbon of Choice
It may sound strange but cheese is my favorite thing to pair with bourbon. It just works. My favorite combo is a soft, triple cream cheese paired with a higher proof bourbon like Old Weller Antique, Rare Breed, or George T. Stagg. For a mild or nutty cheese I like to pair the fruity notes of Four Roses Single Barrel or Four Roses Small Batch. Play around with it and find what you like best. Schwartz lets you do that the smart way by focusing on one cheese at a time each week at the restaurant.
Popcorn & Peanuts Bar : Pappy Van Winkle 15yr
Pure indulgence on both ends here. The salty/sweet/savory flavors of Hedy Goldsmith’s popcorn & peanuts bar with caramel are a perfect match for the smooth, rich flavors and nice viscosity of the 15yr aged Pappy bourbon. You could go bigger with the Pappy 20 or 23 or even the Jefferson 18yr Presidential Select if you’re feelin’ it too. Or you could pick up bourbon fan Hedy Goldsmith’s new cookbook, Baking Out Loud, to try this combo at home!