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A Taste of the Almost-Open Sunset Beer Co. Via Beer & Cheese Pairing @Colorado Wine Company

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Wine with cheese is a natural partnership, as the folks at Eagle Rock's Colorado Wine Company know. But they also tiptoe into beer territory, and, with the Sunset Beer Company's imminent opening (soon!), this past weekend found the small wine shop hosting a Beer and Cheese pairing event as a sneak preview of good things to come.

As a taste of the Echo Park shop-in-the-works the event featured "Alex Squared," aka Alex Macy, beer expert and manager of Sunset Beer Co., with artisanal cheese pairings by Alex Brown of Gourmet Imports.

For $18, guests could mingle in the cool, dim back room of the Wine Co., and sample five beers paired with cheeses. On the menu:

  • Uinta Tilted Smile Pilsner paired with Weybridge Cow's Milk Cheese
  • North Coast La Merle Saison with Etivaz Swiss
  • Port Brewing Mondo IPA with Torta la Serena
  • Liefmans Cuvee Brut with a Bavarian Limberger
  • Port Brewing Old Viscosity with Caveman Oregon Blue

Taking tastebuds from light to sour then dark, the five-beer journey was delightful, with the North Coast La Merle Saison a standout for its rounded, refreshing, summery flavors, and the Liefmans Cuvee Brut a surprising favorite with its tart cherry notes. Macy walked drinkers through each beer for each of their pours, introducing the brewery, the origin, the style, and its expected flavors.
The cheese pairings were well-thought out, and Brown provided humorous and engaging descriptions and commentary with a cheese lover's enthusiasm. A "stinky" Limberger was a surprise, on its own and with sips of the Liefmans, with its buttery texture (it even looks, fresh out of the wrapping, like a fat stick of rind-draped butter) and smoother-than-stereotype taste. The Caveman Oregon, paired with a darker beer, was phenomenal, with its beckoning spots of "blue" and a palate experience much like eating a piece of meat--in fact, had you swapped a big slice of that for a piece of steak on my plate, I would not have objected.

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The Sunset Beer Co. is in its finishing stages, but if a fun Sunday afternoon of sipping and learning and tasting like the one we checked out is a promise of what's to come, it's a spot we intend to keep our eye on...and frequent.