Tuesday, November 24, 2009

More tales of stout on a half shell

Flying Fish's use of oysters in a stout may inspire homebrewers to put bivalves in the boil, too. But a couple of homebrewers from Monmouth County's bayshore turned in an oyster stout four months ago.

Shucks, that's a couple months before FF folks officially tipped their hand about where and what the next Exit Series beer would be.

Bill Comella of Highlands says he likes FF's Exit 1 Bayshore Oyster Stout, but it was Ventnor Brewery's Oyster Stout that inspired him and his co-brewer, Bobby Soden, members of the WHALES homebrew club, to get shellfish (OK, bad pun) with a 10-gallon batch of foreign export stout. The pair brewed on a three-tiered system fashioned from half-barrel kegs and used oysters bought at the Lusty Lobster seafood market in Highlands.

"We just put 'em in a big sack and dropped it in the boil with 10 minutes to go," Bill says. "Then we ate the oysters. There was more stout in the oysters than there was oyster in the stout."

And the beer? "It came out great."

The Ventnor Bill refers to is in the United Kingdom, not the Ventnor south of Atlantic City. The latter, as we know, is tangentially world famous as one of the yellow properties in Monopoly (Ventnor Avenue, price $260; rent $22 unimproved, $1,150 with hotel); the former is located on the Isle of Wight, famous in rock 'n' roll history for a multiday music festival in 1970 that was bigger than Woodstock 1969 and was one of Jimi Hendrix's last live performances.

Bill discovered Ventnor Brewery's oyster stout while in Amsterdam a few months back. The brewery went out of business last March, a victim of a seasonal economy and stingy bankers who wouldn't float it a loan to hold it over until the economy emerged from its winter doldrums.

1 comment:

Tom E said...

Wow, I had completely forgotten about that beer. Last time I saw that beer was on draft at Helmer's in Hoboken - before the fire.