With my new schedule, it’s kind of weird, I’m out of sync with what seems like the rest of the working world. Thursdays are the new “Fridays” and Fridays are the new “Saturdays”, and Sundays are the new “Monday”.
On Friday, I usually sleep in and spend my day doing errands, walking the dog, and then making dinner so I can have something ready for Mrs. Flannestad when she gets home from work.
On New Years, while at our friends’ house, we had worked together on making an excellent version of the Cook’s Illustrated recipe for Hungarian Beef Stew.
It was rainy and a bit cold last “Saturday”, so it seemed like a good day for Stew. Why not revisit the success of the Hungarian Beef Stew?
It turned out tasty, but a bit odd texturally. There was a gritty character I’ve never experienced with Paprika seasoned stews. Unpleasant. The only thing I can figure is that the Spicely Paprika, which I’ve never used before, is weird. Either that or the bottle was half sand.
Fortunately, the Broccoli Rabe from River Dog farms suffered no such textural problems. Sauteed/braised with chiles, anchovies, garlic, and raisins, it was quite delightful.
One of my favorite not too funky Saisons is Foret from Saison Dupont. It is truly a delightful beer.
To be honest, it has a double “nostalgia” factor which gives it extra resonance.
Back in the day, Slanted Door used to be on Church Street in San Francisco. One of Mrs. Flannestad and my favorite things was to go there and split a 750ml bottle of Saison Dupont (or two) with our dinner of shaking beef, spring rolls, etc.
Life has rolled on in the last decade or so. Slanted Door has moved (twice!) and gone on to tremendous success. Unfortunately, they no longer carry the 750ml bottles of Saison Dupont at Slanted Door, but we do carry the smaller bottles of Foret at Phan’s new Chinese Food and Cocktails venue Heaven’s Dog.
But why buy a small bottle, when you can buy a large one? As far as I can tell, the big difference between Foret and Saison Dupont is that Foret is organically produced. Stylistically they are quite similar, with all the wonderful hallmarks of a good Saison.
Not entirely a successful Friday Night Dinner, but the Foret from Saison Dupont and Cabernet Sauvingon from Navarro somewhat salved my failure with the stew.