February 6 is not only my dad's birthday (hi, Dad!) but it is also St. Amand's Day. Who is St. Amand, you might ask, and for good reason, because I never heard of him before J'Anita's and the Rendon Inn decided to throw a shindig celebrating him (and, er, the Superbowl.)
According to Wikipedia, St. Amand is the patron saint of "all who produce beer: brewers, innkeepers and bartenders (and presumably also hopgrowers)." Fitting also that Tom bottled his inaugural New Orleans homebrew on Sunday as well.
So anyway, the folks at J'Anita's (Craig and Kimmie) and the Rendon Inn (Marc), never ones to pass up a good old fashioned feast day with feasting, decided to create a special three course menu celebrating the beers of the only New Orleans brewery (so far), NOLA Brewing.
First course: NOLA Brown Ale battered deep fried green beans.
They were excellent! Not too heavy and seasoned perfectly. We burned our mouths eating the first few, but it was worth it.
Next up was roasted garlic/ house smoked cheddar/Hopitoulas soup served with NOLA Brown Ale-braised roast beef and root vegetables.
Note my Hopitoulas Ale in the background.
The soup was amazingly cheesy and flavorful- very rich and delicious. It reminded me of the cheese soup we'd enjoyed at Simon Pearce in Vermont during our honeymoon, and made me very happy indeed. The pot roast was tender and tasty, just total comfort food. It was a good contrast to the rich, sharp soup, as it was much more mildly flavored, just hearty braised good old fashioned pot roast.
And for dessert... Dark Chocolate Irish Channel Stout Cupcakes w/ an Irish Channel Stout/Chocolate/Cinnamon/Espresso drizzle.
droooool... let's see it paired with an Irish Channel Stout, shall we?
That was... damned good. Anyway, it was the best St. Amand Day I ever had! All this (plus our first NOLA Brewing beer) was $14. Dang, y'all, that's some serious value.
I hope you also enjoyed your St. Amand Day, taking the time to honor the brewers, innkeepers and bartenders (and presumably also hopgrowers) in your life! Because, let's face it, life would seriously suck without them.