Whenever the name Cigar City Brewing comes up in beer geek conversations people take on hushed tones. They begin to wax eloquently about Hunahpu, Jai Alai, and Marshal Zukhov. They tip their glasses reverently towards Tampa, and mumble a little prayer to the fabled brewery. Not really, but Cigar City is known to be one of the state’s best breweries and they have the popularity, awards, and most of all, the talent to deserve that designation. Friday, July 27, you can taste the legendary brews of Cigar City paired with delicious dishes from the chefs of Aprons Cooking School at the Mandarin Publix.
It does not seem possible that all the fame and praise is showered upon a brewery that is only four years old, but the truth of the matter is that Cigar City was incorporated in 2008. In those four years, though it has grown under the watchful eyes of owner Joey Redner and brewer Wayne Wambles. Both Redner and Wambles are expected to be present at the dinner.
The afore mentioned Hunahpu is the much sought after Imperial Stout from the brewery. Aged on cacao nibs, Madagascar vanilla beans, ancho chilis, pasilla chilis and cinnamon, this brew is coveted by beer lovers world-wide. Jai Alai is the brewery’s flagship IPA, and Marshal Zukhov is another Imperial Stout that elicits raves from beer lovers and critics alike.
The menu Friday night will consist of dishes made and paired with different Cigar City beers and includes:
Tempura Beer Battered Conch Salad with Guava Grove Farmhouse Ale Vinaigrette served with Guava Grove Farmhouse Ale. Spicy Andouille Sausage Gumbo Pizza with Brewery Crust served with Jai Alai IPA. Coffee & Cocoa Dusted Beef Short Ribs with Parsnip Puree served with Jose Marti Porter. And to finish the evening off in style, Flourless Chocolate Cake with Espresso Ganache and Maduro Brown Ale Caramel.
The dinner begins at 6:30 and tickets are available by calling (904) 262-4187. Cost is $45 per person. Publix Aprons Cooking School is located at: 10500 San Jose Blvd.