Promoting Italian food and beer - 32 Via Dei Birrai and Pizza e Mozzarella bar

The Italian Chamber of Commerce and Industry invited Mirko from The Chopping Board to one of their Qualitaly events.  The event of the night was a degustation and beer pairing which was a collaboration which showcased the food of Pizza e Mozzarella bar with the beer of Italian company 32 Via Dei Birrai.  All meals and drinks were provided free of charge.

32 Via Dei Birrai (here) is an Italian beer company with a focus on artisan beers.  From the discussion had with the Master Brewer, the key points were noted:

  • All of 32's beer is non-pasteurised
  • Beer is to be treated like wine, in the sense that you can have different beers with different meals with table service in mind
  • Beer is not served chilled


32 Via Dei Birrai's entrance into the Australian market has only been recent and to showcase the beer this food and beer event was held in Adelaide with further events to be held in Melbourne and Sydney.
Now onto the food and beer!  Note:  I am not a beer expert so my thoughts on the beer will be quite basic.

Pizza Margherita
First on the menu is the Margherita pizza.  Margherita pizza's are the most basic of pizza's so in my opinion are a good judgement of how the rest of the pizza's will be.  This was delicious.  Fresh ingredients with a thin base.  Can't really go wrong.  We have previously done a review on Pizza e Mozzarella bar - see the review (here).

Port Lincoln yellow fin tuna crudo, shaved fennel and 32 vinegar
Second on the menu was the Port Lincoln yellow fin tuna crudo.  As can be expected with good quality fresh tuna it was nice and tender. The fennel salad added a needed crunch.  Part of the presentation was spraying of the beer vinegar prior to serving.  At this time, the vinegar smell was very strong so I was expecting the same in flavour.  I was pleasantly surprised when the opposite was present and the vinegar was quite pleasing to the palette.  All-in-all, a good combination of flavours.  The 'Tre+Due' beer was served with this meal.  The beer was fruity and sweet with light spice elements and overall easy to drink.

Mozzarella di Bufala campana DOP & nduja
The third dish was a simple, rustic dish.  These in my opinion, can be some of the best.  The bread was made with the 32 Via Dei Birrai beer and was served with a buffalo mozzarella and nduja (spicy spreadable sausage made with pork).  The buffalo mozzarella was creamy and in combination with the spicy nduja tasted delicious.  

The only downfall was that the bread was too tough for my liking – very hard to cut and bite through.  The 'Audace' beer was next.  This was stronger in flavour than the Tre+Due beer but surprisingly easier to drink.  The subtle sweet and citrus notes in the beer were definitely needed to cut through the spicy spread.
 
Squid ink croquettes, prawn salt and milk foam
The fourth meal was the squid ink croquette with prawn salt and milk foam.  I have previously had squid ink pasta but the croquette concept was new to me.  Visually, the meal was not appealing but the expected flavours were there.  A pretty standard dish.  The 'Nebra' beer was next to accompany this dish.  The Nebra was sweet smelling almost floral and not as bitter in taste to the other beers provided.

San Daniele prosciutto, bone marrow, green tomato and shaved egg
The fifth dish was the San Daniele prosciutto with bone marrow, green tomato and shaved egg.  The bone marrow, as one would expect, was very fatty and definitely required the prosciutto to balance out the flavour.  The serving size was sufficient – I would not have been able to have any more than was provided.  One of my least favourite meals of the night.  The 'Oppale' beer was a great compliment to the dish.

Pulled barossa suckling pig, lasagna, creamed peas and cauliflower
The sixth dish was a loose interpretation of what the typical lasagna is.  The pork crackling was thin and crunchy with the right amount of saltiness - delicious!  The pasta was cooked al-dente and the mash was creamy and sweet.  The pulled pork was tender and made for a great meal.  The use of local produce was great.  The heaviness of this meal leant itself to the bitterness of the 'Curmi' beer balancing out the flavours nicely.

Smoked pepper seared milk fed veal and Russian salad
Now when I was reading this menu, this was the dish that excited my palette the most.  The smoke pepper seared milk fed veal with Russian salad.  The veal, as expected, was well cooked and seasoned.  Very tasty with the smokey notes of the veal coming through the charred edging.  When I read Russian salad on the menu, I must admit that I did not know what it was – this reminded me of a different take on a coleslaw…and I was not a huge fan.  The 'Admiral' beer was a slightly bitter, ruby red beer.

Poached pear with ricotta
Last but not least, dessert!  If you have seen previous posts, I do have a bit of a sweet tooth so was looking forward to this.  The poached pear with ricotta was on the menu.  The sweet poached pear with the slight acidity of the ricotta worked well together.  I would have liked the pear to be poached just a little longer to ensure that it was easier to slice through.  The beer provided for this meal was the 'Atra'.  This beer acted as the equivalent of a dessert wine.  The beer had coffee, caramel and chocolate notes which went well with the dessert.

Whilst I have not provided detailed descriptions of the beers that were tasted I can say that they were quite flavoursome and were different in taste to the standard beers that one may normally drink.  If you are into your beers and have not heard of 32 Via Dei Birrai, give them a go and see what you think. 

Overall, I had a great night.  I learnt some new things about beer, had some good food and met some new people.  For further information on 32 Via Dei Birrai visit (http://www.32viadeibirrai.com/).  For a more detailed review on Pizza e Mozzarella bar, view our previous review (here).  Suffice to say, we are fans of this place.  

Pizza e Mozzarella Bar on Urbanspoon

1 comments:

  1. Looks very similarly awesome to The Blind Lady Ale House we visited in San Diego, a must stop if you're in that area. Monster tap list with a who's-who of mostly west coast breweries/beers.
    http://www.neworleansbarandgrill.com/food/steamed-seafood-platter

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