Showing posts with label White Gypsy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label White Gypsy. Show all posts

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Ballincollig’s Multi-faceted White Horse

Ballincollig’s Multi-faceted White Horse
Satay skewers
You’d like a craft beer? An Irish gin or whiskey? Live Music? A play? A Brew Club? Good Food (great choice and price)? Get them all under one roof at the outstanding White Horse at the western end (the final roundabout!) of Ballincollig. I remember, in 1966/7, seeing this as a stand-alone country pub with briars growing up around the hanging metal sign that proclaimed the name. Some changes since!

Calamari
While on a visit there during the recent Cork Burger Festival, I promised myself I'd go back and check out the general menu, everything from a steak to a Vegetable Moussaka, from a Malaysian Monkfish Curry to Bangers and Mash. Not just any old bangers either, these are by Kanturk's Jack McCarthy, one of quite a few local producers supported by the bar. 

Other suppliers include Eight Degrees and White Gypsy Brewing, Baldwin’s Ice-cream, Pana Bread, Badger & Dodo Coffee and all their burgers are made of local beef. And burgers aren't just for the festival, they have four on the regular menu including exotically named ones the General Cleburne and the Seoul Food Burger!

 It seems to be a very popular spot indeed; we called in midweek on both occasions and the place was nearly full by 6.45pm. There are about 17 main course options, not including the daily specials on the boards.

My pick this time was the Malaysian Monkfish Curry: Monkfish medallions poached in a fragrant coconut curry with pak choi, ginger and lemongrass and served with steamed basmati rice. This was a warm creamy delight, aromatic and full of contrasting textures (€16.95).
Moussaka


 CL’s Vegetable Moussaka was another warm and filling dish: layers of chargrilled Mediterranean vegetables, puy lentils and ricotta cheese steeped in a rich tomato sauce and served with pitta and hummus and a large salad with chunks of Feta as well. Took a while to get through that (12.50).

Of course, we did have two excellent starters as well, again from a big selection. Mine was the perfectly cooked Chilli Salted Calamari, “dusted delicacies with salad tossed in a Caesar dressing and roasted red pepper and tomato jam”.
Monkfish curry
 CL too was thrilled with her opener: Chicken Satay Skewer (tender strips of Satay marinated chicken with a well dressed salad of carrot strips, peppers and onions). Both starters cost €7.50. Desserts - we didn't go there! - are mainly €5.95 and include Crunchie Cheesecake (a Friday favourite!), Creme Brûlée and Sticky Toffee Pudding.

And my craft beer on the night came from Tipperary. White Gypsy’s Weiss Bier is more or  less a favourite of mine at this stage. No live music on the night - Saturday for that. But it has its own music venue upstairs with regular performances by local and visiting acts and here too you can get to see the occasional piece of theatre. Not too sure where the Brew Club hangs out in this many roomed venue - I may track them down on the next visit to this lively spot where the service is both efficient and friendly! 

Beer, cider, and theatre

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Franciscan Well Easter Beer Festival

Franciscan Well Easter Beer Festival

Made an early visit to the Franciscan Well Beer Festival this Saturday afternoon and took my chance to sample some of the newer brews before the crowds started to roll in on this sunny day.

Last year, the Lynch brothers from Mayfield’s Cotton Ball were on the outside of the ring; this time, Eoin and Humphrey were serving their own beers including their latest. This is called Indian Summer and is quite a lovely drink for the days ahead, a mix of lager ingredients and an ale yeast.

Not to be outdone, the now well established Eight Degrees also had new one on offer, the Full Irish, a strong 100 per cent Irish Malt ale. I've had a sneak preview of the publicity shots for this one. X is the letter that springs to mind! Think Full Monty!

Blacks of Kinsale were promising a surprise for later in the afternoon when a special set-up will allow them to add fresh hops (a new one called Equinox) at the very last moment to Kinsale Pale Ale. Can't get fresher than that. Try that and don’t forget to sample their Beoir #1

Beers from new Connemara brewery available at Bradley's, North Main Street, Cork.
Great to meet up with Jamie from White Gypsy and his innovative beers. Tried his lovely refreshing Wheat beer, the beer you need after walking round, Bavarian in style but Irish “engineered”. The 5.2% Pilsner isn't half bad either. White Gypsy are growing their own hops this year and are also hoping that more and more restaurants will offer a craft beer as an alternative to wine.

The gregarious Mountain Man was another brewer I had not met before and he explained that his Hairy Goat was an English Style IPA with a lowish ABV. Nothing low though about the ABV of its American cousin, the 7.5% Crazy Horse. Well worth a try.

Micro-breweries just keep popping up around the country and next up was JJ's from County Limerick. This was their first outing and the 4.8% Pils lager promised much, especially as this is their very first beer.

aAnd another newcomer, the 9 White Deer Brewery from Ballyvourney, was also making its debut. Gordon Lucey tells me their hops, including Amarillo, Cascade and Fast Gold, comes from all over the world but the "mystical" water is local as is the yeast. This will soon be on sale in 500ml bottles and watch out for other beers, including a stout.

Nice to chat with Caroline of Eight Degrees and also with Claire from Dungarvan Brewing Company. I always enjoy the Dungarvan beers and tried a couple this time: their wheat beer and their Comeragh Challenge Irish Bitter. Had a preference for the former but isn't that what craft beer is all about. Great to have the choice. Long may the craft revolution continue!


The Franciscan Well Festival continues until late this Saturday evening and is on again tomorrow Sunday with soakage provided by the on site pizza maker! Enjoy.



Wednesday, August 14, 2013

White Gypsy on the Dubbel

Gypsy on the Dubbel
White Gypsy Belgian Dubbel, 8% abv, Bradley's, North Main Street, Cork.
The best craft brewer in Ireland? Heard that kind of praise for Tipperary’s White Gypsy recently. Not too long afterwards, I took a sup of this one. Wow!

It is mouth friendly, taste buds all quickly awake. No shortage of flavours, even a little spiciness, but the very friendly contact spells not excess but a smooth sophistication. Cool for sure but also strong.

The whole package, including the 8% abv and the 75cl bottle size, is aimed at food matching and White Gypsy says this is "an excellent choice for grilled oily fish like tuna or salmon". Would not argue.


Dubbel is "now understood to be a fairly strong (6 to 8% abv) brown ale, with understated bitterness, fairly heavy body and a pronounced fruitiness and cereal character. Example: Chimay Red/Premiere".

Other White Gypsy reviews, including the excellent Russian Imperial Stout here

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

White Gypsy Likes Her Food

White Gypsy Likes Her Food

American Pale Ale, 7.5%, 75cl bottle, €7.99 Bradley’s
Dark amber colour and a really bitter taste. Sufficient initial head soon reduces to a thin lacy cover. A really good balance of malt and hops (which they grow themselves). The bitterness doesn’t make your mouth pucker but it is obvious enough in the dry finish. Good body, made for food, and should perform ably at the table. Maybe that’s why I served it in a Reidel glass!

Tipperary Brewery White Gypsy, where Cuilan Loughnane is owner and brewer, intends this ale, one of a series of four beers, as a food beer and Cuilan says this is great with spicy dishes and grilled chicken. So you might well see it in restaurants in the near future and that would be no bad thing.

Russian Imperial Stout, 7%, 75cl bottle, €7.99 Bradley’s
Have been enjoying the excellent Irish craft stouts over the past 12 months and thought I might get on well with this one from its initial caramel aromas.
The ample head soon settled down to a see through cap but the toasty flavours remained intense and smoky right through to the dry finish.
The stout, like the ale, is part of a series, the big bottles aimed at the restaurant market. Indeed it, and the others, carry a food pairing recommendation. 
Didn’t have a steak handy for this one but did have a chunk of Gubbeen Smoked cheese. Like all good pairings, neither dominated and they proved a good match.

Also in the series (not tasted, yet!):
German Doppelbock 750ml  ABV:7.5%, A sweet malty beer with a juicy toffee finish. A perfect match for venison and roast pork and terrific with sweet vegetables.

Belgian Dubell 750ml  ABV:8%, A dry slightly spicy beer with a fruity finish. An excellent choice for grilled oily fish like tuna and salmon.