Thursday, June 19, 2014

Recap of Pigeon Hill Beer Dinner at Smash Wine Bar in Muskegon

Written by  Dan VanderKooi
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Smash Wine Bar is just one of many new additions to Muskegon’s downtown this summer. The past year has seen the opening of not one but two new breweries, a proposed distillery, and a newly revamped farmer’s market. While the focus of Smash in on their incredible selection of wines from around the world, the food menu features salads, sandwiches and pizzas with an emphasis on locally-sourced an ingredients, and the full bar includes 4 taps of all Michigan beers as well as speciality cocktails and martinis.
Chef Jack from Smash and Assistant Brewer Ryan Wassan from Pigeon HIll were on hand for the Pigeon Hill Beer Dinner, introducing the various courses and beers. The first course featured the well-balanced Shifting Sands IPA paired with a Michigan Apple and Blueberry cold soup. The Michigan theme continued into the second course featuring an Asparagus salad paired with Pigeon Hill’s summer seasonal Motorboatin’ Wheat. The refreshing wheat beer and IPA both complimented the corresponding soup and salad dishes well, while for the main course as well as dessert the focus switched to a couple of the darker beers that the brewery has to offer.

For the main course, a smoked dry rubbed ribeye steak was paired with assistant brewer Ryan’s own recipe, the delicious Snoring Basset Brown. Last but not least, for dessert, the LMFAO (Let Me Fetch An Oatmeal) Stout was paired brilliantly with a nitro espresso flourless chocolate torte. In addition to the recent Pigeon Hill pairing, Muskegon’s Unruly Brewing was also previously featured at Smash with their own beer dinner, and I am certainly excited to see what else is in store for the future. The events have been well attended and even sold out, so keep a lookout on their event page or sign up for the email list so as not to miss out. The event page for Smash Wine Bar and Bistro can be found here: http://smashwinebar.com/events

Smash Bar also has recently opened up their outdoor patio on Western Avenue which should give them quite boost for the summer months. Also be sure to check out their happy hour 3-6 PM all week long (or until 10 PM on Tuesdays) with drink specials and half-off small plates and flatbread pizzas.

Dan VanderKooi

Dan VanderKooi

Dan VK has been following the Michigan Craft Beer scene since before Oberon has been available in 6-packs. Besides making the rounds at all the local craft breweries and beer bars, Dan also supports the local music scene, reads crime fiction, and enjoys playing volleyball with his wife and friends.