Duck and Pork Rillettes
My favorite pairing so far with New Belgium's La Folie; our house-made rillettes composed of duck and pork cooked with white wine and brandy, left to solidify then garnished with pickled rhubarb and sparkle strawberries served with toasted sourdough.
This is a classic complimentary and contrasting pairing during which neither the food nor the drink looses face, rather one makes the other better. The complex and at times intense woodsy acidity of the beer is softened by the richness of the rillettes, yet it is still able to slice right through the creaminess of the fat and lift the heaviness off the palate. Meanwhile, La Folie echoes the tart flavors of the pickled strawberries and rhubarb which are heightened by the fruity gaminess of the duck.
The toasted sour dough also plays in this interaction as the crispy, caramelized crust shares a harmonious note with the caramel over tones in the beer and brings out a slightly toasted note shared by both. The bread, being a medium for the rillettes also acts as a sponge that bring the beer and fat beautifully together. Each bite warrants another sip and with each sip I want another bite. It's almost as if the beer was made for the dish or the dish for the beer. La Folie is quite mature yet wildly youthful, it's got guts but remains subtle and complex; it's a true pleasure to drink and an even greater pleasure to have at the table. Check it out.