22 November 2011

Do: MVBeer Dinner

Here are two things I believe in:
  1. Always having something to look forward to
  2. Beer
I’d been looking forward to attending one of the McLaren Vale Beer Company’s Beer Dinners since they announced their very first dinner way back in March (even though I lived in Melbourne at the time). It took a little bit longer than expected for things to fall into place but, when the date for Beer Dinner #5 at the Vale Inn was announced, I knew this was the one. My expectations were high.

Without hesitation I ditched my regular Wednesday night commitment and signed us up. Yeah there’s a booking fee but even including all hidden costs $75 for four courses per person is serious value for money.

Time from entering the Inn to beer in hand: one minute. Cheers to getting off to a flying start.
Starters were bought out as we stood and made small talk. And drank.

Before long we seated ourselves at the two long share tables. There was a little intro from Head Brewer Jeff Wright including a game of heads and tails, followed by first course being served. As each course was presented, Head Chef Jamie Laing spoke about the food and Jeff spoke about the accompanying beer. Jeff and Jamie’s bromance is clear. They’ve got it going on.

You don’t need beer goggles to make this look good. Oysters poached in smokey master stock and pork belly served on lemon thyme potato rounds. Paired with Vale Dark.

Quail stuffed with (heavily) spiced farrow, sweet potato puree, ruby chard and honey mead sauce. Paired with Sunner Kolsch from Germany.

Beer jelly(!) served as a palate cleanser.

Chef’s style beef wellington, duck liver pate, spinach and congo potatoes finished with dark chocolate. Paired with Lobethal Bierhaus Chocolate Oatmeal Stout. Brilliant.

It’s exciting to hear that Jeff and the team hope to hold the next beer dinner (tentatively scheduled for early next year) in the brand spanking new brewery. Already shaping up as a not to be missed beer event.

Passionfruit and vanilla bean panna cotta with strawberries and raspberry coulis.
Paired with Vale IPA.

I second that Great Things Happen After Dark, but I also believe that great things can happen anytime. Especially if great beer is on tap. Luckily you don’t need to wait for the next beer dinner to fully experience the charm of what happens within the walls of the Vale Inn. The taphouse and kitchen are open for beer tasting and food Thursday to Monday.

Connect the dots.

Vale Inn on Urbanspoon


  1. Hey Mirella

    This looks as good as the restaurant in Melb we went to :)

    Although the margarita was too salty.

    I'll look you up on FB too :)


  2. That looks amazing. I'm gonna have to get me a seat at one of those Beer dinners!


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