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Dr.ink of Fulham Beer Supper Club

written on 24 Mar 2011

The fantastic Su-Lin (@sloLondon), who I met by chance at a whiskey tasting, invited us very kindly to try the new Supper Club at Dr.ink of Fulham. D.o.F. is a fantastic beer shop, located unsurprisingly in leafy Fulham, and I'd encourage you to check out their shop and their website. I only had a brief time to spend in the shop and saw lots of bottles I would love to buy (as well as a few I did!).

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The supper club is a very exciting concept (and novel to me), matching a total of 12 beers against Gujarati food cooked by the owner Shrila's sisters. As if that wasn't enough, each beer is introduced by Alex Barlow, renowned beer and flavours expert. Possibly the only time I allow myself a fizzy lager is with a curry, so seeing how an expert paired beers with it was going to be something special.

We arrived at the shop (after an arduous journey across London but I won't bore you with that) and were led upstairs to Shrila's house. There were about 12 people sitting around a large coffee table in the lounge, all looking anxious to start and pleased when we arrived. There was a menu describing the five courses and 12 beers we were going to sample, very exciting! I'll run through each beer interspersed with some food descriptions.

Aperitif: Mort Subite Gueze

A nice start with a (wild yeast) Gueze. Very cider like with a strong sweet and sour taste. Aged hops reduce the bitterness to a subtle undernote with citrus and sweet coming through.

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Course 1: Dahi Puri served with Freedom Pilsner and Fruh Kolsch

Wow, what a course to start with. Imagine the most perfect rounded popadum filled with chick peas, spices and chutneys. Amazing!

Curry and lager, there would be no excuse not to pair the two at least once tonight. Freedom is more traditional in that the beer is stored for longer to develop flavours (lager is German for store). It has a touch of bitterness but is pretty light overall, acceptable at least.

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The Fruh Kolsch is lovely, sweet and light with a slight vegetal taste. Technically an ale because of the yeast used.

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Course 2: Paneer Samosas with Celis White and Saison

Paneer cheese stuffed into delicate spiced samosas with a tomato chutney. Brilliant, more please!

Celis is supposed to more accurately the original Hoegarden beer. For me at least, an overwhelming taste of Juicy Fruit bubblegum that I struggle to get past. Not unpleasant, lots of tropical and sweet flavours with a heavy texture. Wheat beers have lots of protein meaning a good match with cheese.

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The Saison is pretty herby and meaty, a tasty beer.

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ON TO PART 2 >>>>>>>>>>>>