We’re mixing things up here on the Growler today! Our beer isn’t just for drinking (though of course, we highly recommend that), and we’re always interested to see what people are creating with our ales. You may recall that I used our Irish Potato Stout in an Irish Lamb Stew…
Well, Dan Gordon of Whisky and Spice is doing something even cooler!
Whisky and Spice is a producer of mustards that matches spices with craft beers, wines, and spirits. Over on his website, Dan explains:
“Our craft brewers, wine makers and distillers take great care to choose the finest ingredients. They apply many years, often decades or centuries of experience, to their craft…At Whisky and Spice our goal is to build on those complex flavours by matching craft beer, wine and spirits with the world’s finest quality spices to create products that excite the senses.”
Currently, Whisky and Spice makes three mustards: Whisky Honey Mustard, Riesling Apple Mustard, and Porter Pepper Mustard.
That last one? Yes, that’s our porter, which makes us hugely excited!
In fact, according to Whisky and Spice, the Porter Pepper Mustard is about 40% beer by volume, which means you can really taste the beer. Out of curiosity, I perused the ingredient list:
Chinese mustard seed, porter (beer), molasses, brown sugar, cider vinegar, spices.
That’s it. No preservatives, no chemicals, no additives. It’s pretty amazing; this really is “whisky and spice” — or beer and spice, in this case!
Tasting this was like unexpectedly meeting an old friend. The porter lends a lot of flavour here: all of its espresso notes come through, as does its hint of dark chocolate. It goes really nicely with the molasses and brown sugar. The sweetness isn’t overpowering, though; this mustard actually has quite a bite to it. That interplay between sweetness and spice sent me back for seconds (and maybe even thirds…okay, yes, thirds).
Again out of curiosity, I searched for Victorian mustard recipes, to see if they used beers as well. The formidable Mrs. Beeton has this recipe:
450. INGREDIENTS – 1/4 lb. of the best mustard, 1/4 lb. of flour, 1/2 oz. of salt, 4 shalots, 4 tablespoonfuls of vinegar, 4 tablespoonfuls of ketchup, 1/4 bottle of anchovy sauce.
Mode.—Put the mustard, flour, and salt into a basin, and make them into a stiff paste with boiling water. Boil the shalots with the vinegar, ketchup, and anchovy sauce, for 10 minutes, and pour the whole, boiling, over the mixture in the basin; stir well, and reduce it to a proper thickness; put it into a bottle, with a bruised shalot at the bottom, and store away for use. This makes an excellent relish, and if properly prepared will keep for years.
But I think I may have to try this one:
Cut some Cheddar cheese in flakes; put it in the oven and when quite dissolved, stir it up with pepper and English mustard.
Another way: Mix the cheese in a saucepan, with a little milk or beer and a little mustard. When it is a smooth paste, serve it up on buttered toast.
Cheese, beer, and this porter pepper mustard on toast? Yes, please!