Culinary brewing

Some beer can have the full flavor and vibrancy of the perfect meal, as students of cooking schools online learn during their training. Other beers explore the oddities and options available. These more outlandish varieties have included Magic Hat Brewing Company’s garlic beer, a wheat-wine ale called the Humdinger Graupel and Four Floyd’s hibiscus-infused ale. Though creative, not all experiments go well. According to Magic Hat, it was forced to take back its garlic brew (one full clove sat at the bottom of each bottle) from store shelves and the drink soon became the source for company dares.

A new brewery in Chicago by the name of Moody Tongue has created its own version of exotic beer. The brewery, which opened in June 2014, chose to go bold for its first feature brew. The shaved black truffle pilsner was the brain child of brewmaster Jared Rouben.

“I’ve always been after the best ingredients that allow me to make the best beer,” Rouben, who founded the company after parting ways with Goose Island brewery, told the Chicago Tribune, “If I have the opportunity to use the best ingredients, I’ll always jump at it.”

With Goose Island, Rouben often collaborated with chefs on his brews, and using a truffle is not too far out of his comfort zone. The opportunity to use this rare ingredient came about when Rouben was approached by The Truffle & Wine Co. of Australia. Together they created the first-ever fusion of truffle and beer and will sell it for the hefty sum of $120 a bottle.

A tasty price
Moody Tongue isn’t alone in placing an expensive bottle on the market. Sam Adams and BrewDogs have both featured their own $100+ varieties. The price typically hints that a beer’s alcoholic content is higher than average, but with Rouben’s pilsner, this is not the case. The brew comes in at only 5 percent alcohol volume.

Describing his masterpiece, Reuben said “I get truffle, I get lightly toasted pilsner malt and clean lager yeast. I get almost a little hint of citrus, like a little hint of Meyer lemon.”

The black truffle pilsner made its debut at Per Se, an elite restaurant. It was served with roasted bitter chocolate, truffle black pudding with brioche creme, walnut floss and green almonds.

Moody Tongue continues its reach for the extravagant with its other two base beers. One, a Belgian gold ale, features a cold-pressed pawpaw. His second is a traditional wheat beer with crushed coriander.

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