The Life of Spice

Goose Island Spice Blends

Inspiration, News, Recipes | |

This month we sit down with the good folks at Goose Island Brewery, partners in one of our latest collaborations, spices designed to create food to pair with beer.

Michelle Heimerman/SAVEUR

© Michelle Heimerman/SAVEUR

Thanks for taking the time to talk with us, can you first tell us a bit more about the three beers that inspired the blends and about Goose Island for people who may not be familiar?

The three beers, IPA, Sofie, and Bourbon Country Stout pretty much cover the wide range of styles brewed at Goose Island.

IPA is an old world meets new world style IPA blending citrus-y American hops with some earthy European varieties. It’s a solid IPA, less aggressive than most, which makes it much more food-friendly.

Sofie is a Belgian-style farmhouse ale and is one of our barrel-aged beers. This Saison has been partially aged in white wine barrels with hand-zested orange peel and wild yeast. There’s a lot of tart citrus from the peels, white pepper notes from the yeast, and even a touch of vanilla from the oak. When I think of those three elements, citrus, pepper and even vanilla, they are common flavors used to round out and accentuate dishes when cooking. This is why Sofie works so well with many different foods.

Bourbon Country Stout is probably the beer we are known best for. It’s a cult classic big Imperial Stout – over 14% ABV – and is blended from beer that spent almost a year aging in Bourbon barrels at our Barrel House in Chicago. The cold Chicago winters and warm summers really put those barrels through some extreme expansion and contraction which pulls lots of rich characteristics out of the wood… charred oak (of course), but also vanilla, chocolate, and smoke. Because of these flavor notes, most people think of it as a dessert beer, and while it is an amazing digestif, but it also goes great with beef and dry-rubbed BBQ.


Herbed Honey Cider Vinegar – La Boîte x Catskill Provisions

News | |

We’ve got a fun new product featuring honey from our friends at Catskill Provisions! Below is a brief interview with founder Claire Marin.

Screen Shot 2017-11-09 at 4.36.50 PM

• We’re excited to carry this collaboration Claire. It’s lightly sweetened with your honey right?

Yes indeed! Just the right amount from our hives in the Catskills, Sullivan, Delaware and now Madison counties


Kerry Brodie and Emma’s Torch

Events, News | |

This month we sit down with Kerry Brodie, founder of Emma’s Torch, a non-profit social enterprise dedicated to empowering refugees through culinary education. We’re honored to cook with them on Thursday October 19th at their space in Red Hook. Tickets are here!


We’re very excited about the upcoming dinner, can you please tell us more about the theme of the meal and what attendees should expect?

It’s both a graduation ceremony for our latest cohort of refugees, and an opportunity to expose supporters to the global cuisines that Lior and Alex will share. Fundamentally Emma’s Torch’s mission is twofold to both create opportunity for refugees in the culinary arena, and to broaden American horizons by sharing the cultural wealth that immigrants have to offer.


Nick Anderer and Martina Pizza Spices

News | |

This month we sit down with Nick Anderer of the newly opened pizzeria Martina in the East Village. We’re excited to share new blends we developed together that are designed to enhance pizza.

Nick Anderer

Thanks again for taking the time to speak with us! What would you say sets Martina apart from Marta (which you opened in 2014) and what experience would you like for patrons to have?

Martina reminds me more of the rustic and lively neighborhood joints I loved when I was in Rome. We wanted it to still be beautiful like Marta, but with the energy that comes from a cozy and casual space.


Stuart Cameron of Byblos: Miami Spice Dinner August 31st

Events | |

Stuart Cameron is the executive chef for Byblos Restaurants, with locations in Toronto, Miami, and Dubai. This month we interview him in advance of our upcoming Spice Dinner at Byblos Miami on August 31st. Get your tickets here!


This is second spice dinner we’ve done with you and with Byblos. Toronto was a blast, and we’re very much looking forward to Miami on the 22nd.

Thanks for taking the time to sit down with us this month and answer a few questions! What would you like participants in the upcoming spice dinner to walk away having experienced?

Collab dinners are always a blast and Miami really gets behind them. This one’s going to be huge!! Lior has a great presence in Miami and chefs really love his products… so it’s a great opportunity for the Miami foodies to come down and meet him… It’s all about the food!!