Five course dinner with beer pairings? Yes, please. These $30 tickets were totally worth the price! Here I share pictures and notes from our wonderful experience.
Upfront, I will say that I know Sahm’s Place, I’ve been there several times and I love their food and their menu, but it hasn’t always been that way. I live and work near Sahm’s Place and have had coworkers tell me they’ve gone there for lunch or dinner, but I had never made it there myself until a few months ago. On the outside, you really don’t see much – just a brown building with parking spaces. What really gives Sahm’s a good name is the quality of the food, their beer menu and their affordable prices, which can’t be seen without walking into their doors and sitting down with the menu.
Tamre recommended that I try The Roost, Sahm’s breakfast joint in Fishers, for dinner before Allison and I went up to Indy Scream Park for a haunted, horrific Halloween evening. Knowing Tamre wouldn’t lead me astray, I went off of her recommendation and met Allison there for grub. That was the first time I found out that Sahm’s used meats from local meatery Smoking Goose – the rest of my experience can be read on Doing Indy here. After that, I became a Sahm’s fanatic.
This is the third “Third Thursday” dinner that Sahm’s and Bier Brewery have paired up on. Evidently, tickets for December’s event sold out in 2 days, wow! So glad I got two for John and I. While we didn’t know what the menu would be, we both knew that if it included Sahm’s and Bier Brewery, it would be really really good. And we were right.
Each dish has beer IN IT – Chef Eddie used the beers that each dish was paired with IN the actual dish, so your tastebuds could enjoy beer EVERYWHERE. Both Chef Eddie Sahm and Corbyn from Bier Brewery gave descriptions of the food and beer before we ate, and there was a handy sheet with the menu at each table setting. I really appreciated this, although I did bring a notebook to record my thoughts now that I’ve been to a few of these multiple-course dinners and have realized that by the 3rd alcohol pairing I may not clearly remember everything the next day.
First course – “3 Beers & a Coffee”
Using Bier Brewery’s Pumpkin Porter, described as “liquid chocolate pumpkin pie,” Chef Eddie created the most delicious butternut squash soup I have ever tasted. The consistency was similar to apple butter, smooth and velvety. It’s hard to describe this dish as there were so many flavors swimming around on my tongue, but I could definitely taste the coffee and beer in this soup. I usually shy away from butternut squash, having had a few not-so-good experiences with it, but I would order this soup again if it were on the regular menu.
Second course – “Pearl Risotto”
Scallops, again! Again as in the second time I’ve had scallops, ever. Chef Eddie’s scallops were perfect. While there was only one on the plate, I didn’t mind. One was all I needed to say that Chef Eddie knows what he’s doing. What I liked the most were the texture differences between the scallops, risotto and the crunchy garlic topping. The first time I tried scallops I thought they were so buttery and so soft, it just melted in my mouth. By adding the crunchy topping and risotto, it kept the scallops from becoming too silky or buttery, and I really liked that. A rosemary cauliflower puree was within the risotto, and the Special K Kolsch from Bier Brewery was light enough that it complimented the flavor of the food without masking it. Kolsch’s are great light beers for hot summers, when you’re introducing someone to craft beer, or for anytime you want a light, crisp beer.
Third course – “Duck, Pear, Port”
Completely surprised by this dish. It was a cold plate, which struck me as odd at first, but I’m not really sure why. I guess it just was not what I expected at all, but Chef Eddie made it clear in his introduction that this food was meant to surprise us, so he won on that note. The duck was from Smoking Goose Meatery and sat on top of a deliciously tangy Belgian endive salad. If it weren’t for the next dish, John would call this one his favorite.
Side note, the dish originally came with pistachios, which I’m allergic to. The wait staff came around to each table and asked if we wanted the vegetarian option or if we had any food allergies, so I mentioned pistachios and they removed them from this course for me. Now THAT is amazing service.
This dish was served with a Belgian Red, a tamer version of the Belgian double that Bier Brewery offers. I’m not normally a fan of Belgians as they’re typically sourer than what my palate prefers, but I would totally purchase a full growler of this.
Fourth course – “Szechwan More Slider”
Photo credit goes to John on this one, as it was his favorite dish of the evening and he got the best photo! Chef Eddie explained that he couldn’t resist giving us one spicy dish, and here it was. Little did I know that I would bite into this slider and my mouth would open right back up again to say “OH MY GOODNESS.” I meant every word. The Szechwan sauce, oh the Szechwan sauce – sweet and spicy, reminding of the best Chinese food I’ve never had. Evidently, Szechwan sauce is Chef Eddie’s favorite Chinese flavors, just like John and me. Mint and cilantro slaw gives a great crunch to the sweet, buttery slider bun and the melt-in-your-mouth braized pork belly, which had the perfect ratio of fat and meat. Chef Eddie explained how this slider pairs perfectly with the Megladon Amber, an 8% strong malty beer with fruit and caramel notes that helps to fight the heat of the dish.
I could have eaten at least 3 of these sliders.
Fifth course – “Fruit Cake”
Oh, fruitcake. The ugly stepchild of the holiday party. Somehow I knew that Chef Eddie wouldn’t slap a loaf of fruitcake on our plates, but what we did get truly was unexpected. A strong lemon flavor came through the zesty glaze of this ricotta cake, which was decorated with blueberries, blackberries and pomegranate seeds that had macerated for several days. What was least expected was the beer pairing – an IPA, the Bubonic Chronic. Never before would I think that a bitter, hoppy IPA would be great with a sweet dessert.
Seriously could have licked the plate. There would have been no shame. The ricotta cake tasted like a sweet fluffy cookie, and again, even after this whole meal, I could have eaten more.
I’m pretty sure that I’ll eat anything Chef Eddie puts in front of me. John and I had no complaints about the meal. We really appreciated how well we were treated during the event, how generous the beer pours were, and how delicious the food was. Even though this was a special menu, I’m craving Sahm’s and can’t wait to go back for their burgers and $4 craft beers. If your budget isn’t too bad after the holidays, I think you’ll find me at Sahm’s on January 1, in line to buy tickets to the next event!