Eclectic and quirky Prairie Artisan Ales is teaming up with O’Niells Heights for a dinner featuring its acclaimed craft beer paired with four food courses for a special cause.
Ten percent of the proceeds benefit the New Mexico Autism Society. The donation will increase to 15 percent if the O’Niell’s Facebook page gets 100 likes during the time frame that the dinner takes place.
Prairie Vous Francais kicks off the 30-minute reception. It will be served with an amuse of cold-smoked ahi tuna.
“This has been rated fifth best (Belgian) session in the world by RateBeer and so we figured there’s no better way to start off the evening with that reception beer; something that has been put on the map recently,” said Katixa M. Mercier, sales representative for Favorite Brands, which distributes the ales in New Mexico.
Dinner begins with Funky Gold Citra paired with brie, rocket (arugula), candy stripe radish, red oak lettuce with mango and peach vinaigrette. The dry hopped sour ale is part of the Funky Gold series, which celebrates different strains of hops. Apricot Funk paired with chilled watermelon soup makes up the second course. Apricot Funk is an American wild ale that features the “tart brightness” of an apricot while maintaining the fleshy nectar quality of the apricot, according to Mercier.
“That Apricot Funk label is ridiculous with all those apricot astronaut ninjas,” Mercier said. “I’m sure it’s a reciprocal sort of source of inspiration. Beer leads to art, leads to beer, leads to art.”
Oklahoma brothers Chase and Colin Healey founded Prairie Artisan Ales in 2012. Chase is the brewer and Colin is responsible for creating the unique label art.
“His style is so different and quirky and eclectic and fresh and playful and each label that he does is so different,” Mercier said.
The third course features Marlon Brings the Smoke, an Imperial stout, which is exclusive to the dinner and the brewery. It will be served with coffee-rubbed and stout-braised brisket. The Imperial stout is smoked with unripe green coffee beans, which give it a distinctly different flavor with higher acidity, according to Mercier.
Albuquerque’s Broken Trail Distillery and Brewery had a hand in inspiring Pe-Kan, which will be paired with Irish cream cake with Broken Trail Horsethief Pacana rum whipped cream. The discovery was made that Broken Trail’s pecan rum was complementary to a Prairie Artisan Ales Imperial stout called Bomb! during a Favorite Brands tasting last year. Broken Trail sent a bottle of the pecan rum back to the Healey brothers.
“So they taste it and they’re like, huh, something about this is working for me here,” Mercier said. “So they kind took the element of the pecan and added it into one of their Imperial stouts.”