Harpoon Dinner at The Biltmore
Once a month, The Biltmore in Newton closes its dining room doors on their regular menu, partners with a local brewing company and offers a four-course beer pairing menu. Past events have included Brooklyn Brewery and Cape Ann Brewing Company. This month, Harpoon Brewery was serving up their local beer to diners.
Beer. We started with almost a whole pint of cider, followed by a glass of Unfiltered Pale Ale, then a tasting glass of limited edition (and my favorite of the evning) Ginger Wheat, followed by a full bottle of Rye IPA before ending the night with a tasting glasses of Quad Leviathan. I’d say that’s getting your money’s worth in beverages.
Fun. The thought of communal tables seemed a bit daunting to me, but in fact, encouraged an atmosphere camaraderie centered around a common love of food.
Food. Delicious. I thought Chef Dan Lane went above and beyond to create these pairings. PEI mussels with coconut and ginger? Rabbit grilled cheese? And all were executed well, served at the correct temperatures and really paired well with the beer. And that was servings for the entire dining room!
Something different. I think this would make a great menu for a birthday party dinner. Large tables of up to ten are available for a large group. Pay ahead of time and avoid the awkward splitting of the check at the end of the evening.
Cost. The cost of this dinner was $55, which included beer, food and tip. We were served an amuse bouche, if you will, of passed chicken wings. The Harpoon guys brought out a “surprise” beer at the end of the evening. Not to mention all of the beer served with very good food. I’d say that’s $55 worth.
Worth it. I see themes dinners all the time at various establishments in and around the city. My first thoughts are always, well if I’m going to spend that amount I want to pick everything that I want to eat; “no thanks,” I say, to a set menu. Buy I really enjoyed this dinner, and found that I was served very good dishes that I might not have tried. Of course you need to have a fairly open palate, but The Biltmore provides their menu ahead of time so if you have dietary restrictions or feel like 2 of the 4 courses really aren’t for you, you can make your choice accordingly.
I’m not sure how we have yet to write about The Biltmore; it’s one of our neighborhood spots and Jon’s go-to for Chicken and Waffles (available on both dinner and brunch menus). Steak Tips (on previous fall and winter menu) are one of my favorites and consistently good, as well as the Hog Wings (crilled pork shanks with a Carolina BBQ sauce & Great Hill bleu cheese). So stayed tuned because The Biltmore brings quality comfort with a neighborhood feel, and that delicious combination can be hard to find.
The Biltmore is located at 1205 Chestnut St in Newton.
Full disclosure: I was invited to this dinner by The Biltmore. All opinions are my own.
Do you like themed dinners with set menus?