There are several great restaurants in Seattle. Since my primary focus here at CraftBeerMonger.com is on craft beer though (and to a lesser degree craft cider and other craft alcoholic beverages), I haven’t visited as many of Seattle’s fine dining establishments as I’d like. Also, due to my somewhat unusual work schedule, I don’t get to downtown Seattle for a good meal very often.
That’s why I was pleased to receive an invitation recently from Urbane to experience, on them, their Fresh Hop dinner, featuring Fresh Hop beers from Georgetown Brewing Company. Urbane is a farm-to-table restaurant who prides themselves on sustainability and using locally-sourced ingredients. In fact, the vast majority of Urbane’s ingredients come from within a 200-mile radius of the restaurant located at 8th Ave and Olive Way in the Hyatt at Olive 8 building downtown.
Upon my arrival, I was shown to a table in the bar area. I knew I was there for their pre-set Fresh Hop dinner, but I also saw they had a few other offerings for the Georgetown beer pairing. These included a local grass fed burger made with an Uli’s bratwurst patty, house-made sauerkraut, Beecher’s fondue and Beaver’s mustard paired with your choice of a 14 oz draft beer (Fresh Hop Lucille or Fresh Hop Johnny Utah) for $21, or a 3-beer flight featuring Georgetown’s Fresh Hop Johnny Utah paired with hot soppressata from Salumi, Fresh Hop Lucille paired with Beecher’s herbed cheese curds and 9 lb Porter paired with house-made chocolate bark for $16.
As I was perusing the menu, Urbane’s Chef Thomas Ortiz came over to introduce himself, tell me a bit about Urbane and give me an overview of the 3-course beer paring dinner I was about to experience.
Oregon Albacore Poké, paired with Georgetown Brewing’s Fresh Hop Lucille IPA.
I’m a big poké fan, so I was eager to give this appetizer a try. The albacore was lightly dressed with sesame, soy, chili, fresh hops, and avocado puree, scallion and topped with a house-made potato chip. It paired quite will with the grassy, citrusy and slightly peppery notes of the Lucille Fresh Hop IPA and was a very refreshing first course.
Smoked Bone-In Pork Chop, paired with Georgetown Brewing’s Fresh Hop Johnny Utah.
I always enjoy a good pork chop, and this 10 oz bone-in chop from Carlton Farms out of Carlton Oregon was really done right. The depth of the smoky flavor was incredible which, Chef Ortiz informed me, came from a multi-step process of cold-smoking the chop before cooking it sous-vide style and then finishing it in the oven. Served with Beecher’s white cheddar and poblano grits, grilled haricot verts, pickled Tonnemaker peppers and pork jus, it was a satisfying dish that meshed well with the light, citrusy notes of Fresh Hop Johnny Utah.
Spiced Chocolate Pot de Crème, paired with Georgetown Brewing’s 9 lb Porter.
If you’re a fan of holiday-spiced chocolate (cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, star anise), then this is the desert for you. The spices were there, but not overdone and I was amazed at how incredibly thick it was – like a triple (or even quadruple) thick cheesecake – but all chocolate. I literally had to dig it out of the ramekin with my spoon. It was topped with vanilla-chantilly crème, mini chocolate pearls and served with house-made churros. Even though it was small, it was so rich and decadent I didn’t quite finish it. If you know anything about paring beers with deserts, then you likely already know that Georgetown’s 9 lb Porter was the perfect accompaniment.
Urbane’s Chef Thomas Ortiz and Executive Chef Brian Pusztai told me they’ve received quite a positive response to this pairing dinner, to the point where many patrons are imploring them to add the poké bowl and the bone-in pork chop to their regular menu. After tasting them, I have to say that wouldn’t be a bad idea at all.
The price for this 3-course beer paired dinner is $45, which is actually pretty reasonable considering that price includes all 3 courses and all 3 accompanying beers. If you’re looking for a delicious and satisfying meal this Fresh Hop season, or anytime, check our Urbane. I think you’ll like what they have to offer. To see the rest of the photos from my visit, click HERE.
Drink responsibly and stay safe out there.