4 Beers, 4 Courses: Black Abbey Brewmaster, NCC Chefs Team Up

Posted on Feb 18, 2016

Feb 18, 2016

Only a Few Spots Remain for March 5 Craft Beer Dinner


Carl Meier loves to see the lightbulb go off when guests realize that beer can be paired with food in the same way as wine.

That the right beer makes a certain dish taste better without overwhelming it. That the right food complements a beer like an aged ribeye does a Cabernet Sauvignon.

“The idea that beer and food can pair together like wine and food do other than at a sporting event or backyard barbecue is relatively new,” says Carl, brewmaster and founder of Nashville’s Black Abbey Brewing Company.

Nashville City Club members and their guests can get a better, and tastier, idea of the possibilities on March 5 at the Craft Beer Dinner, where different Black Abbey brews will be served with each of four courses. (Not counting dessert).

black abbey nashvilleThe food menu includes butter-poached monkfish, Dijon glazed pork loin, sweet pickled prawn and coffee-dusted smoked lamb chop. Carl has matched a Black Abbey beer to each course and will talk about the pairings as well as take questions from attendees.

Black Abbey brewed its first batch in August 2013 and a month later opened the South Nashville/Berry Hill area tap room on Sidco Drive, which is called Fellowship Hall and evokes a chapter house in a monastery. On Feb 6 of this year, more than 600 people came through the tap room for tastings of special barrel aged beers, which are not generally available. One of those bottled gems is part of the NCC’s Craft Beer Dinner.

Carl does about one such dinner a month, in Nashville and beyond. “Our beers are designed to go with food,” he says. A beer shouldn’t be so forward it “plows the food under” or so nondescript that the food overruns it, he says.

Black Abbey Brewery on Sidco Drive offers to the public every Saturday and arranges tours for private groups.

Black Abbey Brewery on Sidco Drive offers to the public every Saturday and arranges tours for private groups.

Classic pairings including an “aggressively hoppy” IPA” with a spicy curry dish and a malty beer with hot chicken. In the first, the beer both enhances the spiciness and cleanses the palate, Carl says. The second is much the same idea as reaching for milk after eating too many hot peppers.

Like many brewers, Carl began at home. He was joined Music City Brewers, a homebrew club, in 1999. At the time, members also included Linus Hall, who owns Yazoo; Steve Scoville, the head brewer at Little Harpeth Brewing; Karen Lassiter, head brewer at Boscos; and Ken Rebman, owner of Czann’s Brewing Company.

A Craft Beer Dinner with Czann last September sold out quickly. The March 5 event, which is nearly sold out, is another chance at a one-of-a-kind experience that the NCC offers its members. No lines, no waiting, no crowds. Just great food, beer and conversation.

Tickets are $40 for Mug Club Members and $50 for NCC members and guests, not including tax and gratuity. RSVP to lisa@nashvillecity.com or call 615-244-3693 to grab a spot.

Online ordering by Open Dining