New Brew Friday Iceland- Brewski Cookie Jar

Our one and only night in Iceland just happened to coincide with the Iceland Beer Week kickoff at Mikkeller & Friends.  The Swedish guys from Brewski were in house along with hometown Iceland Kex Brewing to launch their collaboration beer Cookie Jar.

Billed as a New England style IPA this was made with wheat, oats, malted barley and a ton of hops creating that signature hazy orange body, thick frothy head and lots of bright citrus flavors. This beer was so good we immediately ordered another one along with the Brewski pale ale Mangohallonfeber which was a juicy blast of mango, pineapple and grapefruit.  

We had been to the Mikkeller & Friends in Copenhagen before which was casual and cozy but this one was definitely on the scary side.  Big red jesters were painted on the wall while dolls heads served as the centerpiece for the back of the room.  If I wasn't enjoying the Brewski beers so much I probably would have been a bit freaked out but damn they'e cranking out some d…

London- Rules, Blacklock, Gordons & J Sheekey

We got back to London around 2:00 Sunday afternoon and had less than 24 hours to enjoy the city before hopping on a plane to Iceland.  Luckily almost everything new I wanted to check out was right in our area; first stop Rules Restaurant.

Rules was established in 1798 by Thomas Rule and currently holds the title of oldest restaurant in London. We already had plans for a Sunday Roast elsewhere so we looked around the gorgeous restaurant a bit then headed upstairs to the hidden cocktail bar on the 2nd floor.  I absolutely love anything old and elegant and this place was absolutely dripping with both; plush red couches, thick velvet carpeting and a gorgeous dark wooden bar manned by well suited bartenders.  

Since we were celebrating the spirit of the 1800's I ordered a classic cocktail from that era the Clover Club a blend of gin, lemon juice, fresh egg white and raspberry liqueur.

I honestly have no idea what Mr. T ordered.  It was definitely bourbon based and came in this tiny little…

Brussels Day Four Con't- Cantillon, Nuetnigenough & Moeder Lambic

After lambick-O-droom we hopped back on the train to Brussels and headed back to Cantillon brewery for one last time.  There we met up with a few more New York friends (we NYers like our lambic) and actually had about 3 hours to relax and share the entire list of bottles together.

I was more than happy to have that Carignan and 2007 Cantillon Gueuze again...

...not to mention the gorgeous Cabernet franc driven Saint Lamnivus and possibly my favorite Cantillon in the world Lou Pepe Kriek.  

We picked up some more bottles to go and stopped at our place to drop them off, pausing for a moment in our small but gorgeous courtyard for a glass of Tilquin Mure.

Then it was back to Nuetnigenough for dinner and this rich, hearty steak doused in a thick Cuvee Renee sauce.  I was so sick earlier in the week I could barely look at Mr. T as he devoured this dish so it was incredibly satisfying to enjoy myself in all its glory.

Nuetnigenough not only has great food but also a fantastic beer list.  We move…

New Brew Friday- Day Four in Brussels lambik-O-droom

Our last trip to Brussels we ubered out to the countryside of Beersel to Drie Fonteinen, my favorite geuze producer of all time. It was just a small blendery back then starting to brew their own beer on site for the very first time.  Fast forward to 2017 and owner Armand has opened up a brand new spot called lambik-O-droom which is much closer to Brussels center and boasts a massive space for bottling, blending and barrel aging along with a beautiful tasting room.

Since we had done the full tour of the old facility last time we decided to devote all of our time this trip to relaxing and enjoying his delicious geuzes.  We met up with a friend who also happened to be visiting from NYC and sat down to share some bottles.

Oude Geuze Vintage 2012- one of my favorites of the Drie Fonteinen geuzes.   So bright and lemony with that fantastic lingering toasted sesame funk.  This was so perfect we ordered a second bottle right away along with the delicious house geuze cheese.

This was seriously so…

Brussels Day Three Con't- Dinner at Le Rabassier

Our third evening in Brussels we reserved for our fine dining portion of the trip with a reservation at Le Rabassier, a small 18 seat spot by Chef and Owner Christophe Durieux.  Chef Durieux cooks and preps all of the food for the restaurant while his wife Eve Renaud acts as front of the house, waitress and sommelier.  Rabassier loosely translates in French to 'a man with a passion for truffles' which is quite fitting as a meal at this restaurant felt like an homage to the great fungi.

Le Rabassier offers three different tasting menus; three course, four course, or five course with extra black truffles and an a la carte.  We decided upon the four course menu and a lovely bottle of Sancerre, then settled in for three and a half hours of an absolutely exquisite evening of food.

Amuse Bouche- Parmesan Foam with shaved black truffle

Amuse Bouche- Black Olive & Foie Gras

1st Course- Roasted Scallop with daikon, lemon, caviar and avocado

2nd Course- Quinoa Crusted Rouget with pasta f…

Brussels Day Three- Lunch at De Heeren Van Liedekercke

Our third day in Brussels was easily my favorite day of the entire trip. I woke up without a touch of illness in sight and was beyond ready to spend the day eating and drinking our way through two incredible places- the first stop De Heeren Van Liedekercke.

This restaurant and bar is in the town of Denderleeuw, a 30 minute train ride followed by a 30 minute walk from Brussels.  We were a bit worried as it poured almost all afternoon but somehow we missed the sheets of rain both coming and going.  Luck was definitely on our side at this cozy tavern.

Gueuze happens to be my favorite style of beer so after holding off the past few days I was ready to dive right in with a full on gueuze lunch starting with a funky Mort Subite (brewed at the restaurant from the day before) and the flagship Oude Geuze from Drie Fonteinen.

These gueuzes couldn't be more different; the Mort Subite was malty and sweet while the Drie was bright with fresh lemons.  A really nice contrast for the start of the gu…