The Dinner Conversation

Monday, January 21, 2013

Samuel Adams Barrel Aged Beer Dinner Menu

For years wine has been the go to drink of choice when it comes to pairing with a meal. However, now we see more and more pairings with beer.

Epicurious has a FAQ sheet for how to pair beer with food. If you type "Beer Pairings" in the search on, you get a list complete with what beer to pair with Thanksgiving dinner, beer and cheese pairings, and even what to drink with Kentucky Fried Chicken (I don't really suggest you try this pairing, but who am I to judge if you give it a shot?)

My point is, times they are a'changing! Now more people see beer as a drink that helps accent and highlight flavors in food. We even had a very successful run of dinners at The Rookery called "Unveil The Ale". At "Unveil The Ale" we spotlighted a hard to find beer for this area and paired it with dinner and an album. We all sat around the bar and talked about beer and food. It was a lot of fun, as well as delicious, and informative.

We had been scratching our heads trying to figure out how to revive the dinner and a beer concept when we were approached by a Samuel Adams representative about helping to introduce their new Barrel Room Collection to middle Georgia. It was like lightning struck and we had our answer. Dovetail was going to host our next beer pairing dinner!

We were all excited and bubbling with ideas as we tasted the new beers. Chef Doug Sanneman was shouting out flavors and possible combinations as soon as the beer hit his tongue. We sat down and created a four course meal that starts where it all started for Samuel Adams, their Boston Lager. Then brings you up to date with the brewery by carrying you through three of the new Barrel Room Collection beers.

Dovetail is usually closed on Mondays but for something as special as this we have decided to open our doors to the very special 40 guests who will join us. That's right, this dinner is limited to the first 40 guests who make reservations.

Chef Doug Sanneman and Dovetail present:

Samuel Adams Barrel Room Collection Dinner

Course 1: Samuel Adams Boston Lager
Pear and Golden Raisin Tartar
bacon marmalade, bleu cheese mousse, shaved toasted pecans

Course 2: Samuel Adams New World Tripel
Lump Crab Salad
macerated kumquats, fennel dressing, micro mint

Course 3: Samuel Adams Stony Brook Red
Dill Crusted Lamb Rack
roasted garlic cauliflower, harissa, caramelized carrots

Course 4: Samuel Adams Thirteenth Hour
Banana Fig Goat Cheese Dumpling
banana ice cream, cardamon creme anglaise, toasted coconut

Dinner is served with a 12oz pour of each beer and is $85 per person. You must make reservations for this special event. Seating is limited to the first 40 reservations. To reserve your seat, call 478-238-4693. You must reserve your spots with a credit card number.

We are excited about this special event and look forward to reserving your spot.
See you soon.


Thursday, January 17, 2013

Dovetail's Valentine's Day Menu

Chef Doug Sanneman and the rest of the Dovetail chefs have prepared a very creative Valentine's Prix Fixe menu for February 14th.

Guests who joined us for dinner this New Year's Eve are sure to want to have reservations for this special four course dinner. The four course meal is $85, the first course is served with a glass of champagne, and the dessert is prepared by Pastry Chef, Ashley Dunn.

Valentine's Day Menu

Amuse Bouche

Lobster Wellington
picked lobster in puffed pastry, grilled corn, avocado salsa, served with a glass of champagne

Appetizer (Choose One)

Heart Of Palm Salad
heirloom tomatoes, cucumbers, black olives, artichoke hearts, blood orange vinaigrette

Trio Of Hearts
chicken heart satay, pastrami beef heart, stir fried pork heart

Quail Risotto
Carolina plantation rice, country ham, quail breast, pumpkin seed molé, silver medal cheddar, quail egg

Entree (Choose One)

Coco powder and coffee dusted Kobe flat iron
curry roasted carrots, shaved Brussels sproust, flash fried coconut

Seared Grouper
beluga lentils, spinach, rustic tomato sauce

Roasted Chicken
wild rice risotto, dill carrot cream sauce


Dark Chocolate Truffle Cake
wildflower honey ganache, clementine and grapefruit sauces, topped with a truffles duo and micro mint.

Our regular menu will be unavailable on February 14th. Be sure to get your reservations made early. Call 478-238-4693 to make reservations. You can also book reservations online at

Wishing you a special Valentine's Day.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Lima Bean Hummus Lettuce Wrap Recipe

 The Lima Bean Hummus in Dovetail's Put-Ups appetizer is a favorite. It's easy to understand why. That little southern twist of using lima beans instead of chickpeas makes it memorable and once you taste it, you're hooked. It's one of those things where you want to say, "Why didn't I think of that?!" It seems simple enough to make but the problem for most people is that they don't know how to make hummus in the first place.

As far as hummus goes, we know it tastes good, but what exactly is it? Hummus is a middle eastern dip or spread made from chickpeas. The earliest known recipe comes from 13th century Egypt.

In its most basic form the ingredients to make hummus consist of chickpeas, sesame oil, lemon and garlic. It is usually served with olive oil and a flat bread or pita.

The secret to making smooth hummus is to peel the chickpeas after cooking them. Sounds like a pain in the bones right?

Well guess what? We aren't worried about all of that because we are going to be working with lima beans!

Here's what you are going to need to make the lima bean hummus.

1 cup of dried lima beans
1 Mediterranean lemon
2 garlic cloves
Extra virgin olive oil
Black Pepper
Lettuce leaves (Bibb or Romaine)
Sriracha chili pepper sauce

 Soak the lima beans overnight in water.

Drain the beans and then cover in pot with fresh water. Add one teaspoon of salt and bring to a boil. Let the lima beans cook until the are soft.

Drain the beans and then add them to a food processor along with the juice of the lemon. We are very lucky to receive Mediteranian lemons from our friend Mrs. Charlotte Hope. She grows them in her yard. However, if you can not find a Mediterranean lemon, a regular lemon will do just fine.

Puree the beans and lemon juice while drizzling olive oil. We use Georgia Olive Farms Extra Virgin Olive Oil. This is a very pleasant tasting olive oil and you can't beat that fact that it is grown and produced right here in Georgia. Let the mixture puree until it has reached a smooth consistency. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Transfer hummus to a bowl, cover, and let sit in refrigerator for at least one hour.

Place lettuce leaves on plate and top leaves with a heaping portion of hummus. Chef Sanneman used a pastry decorating squeeze bag to add some design as he put the hummus on the leaf. This could be the added little presentation needed when serving these at a party.

Finally top each one with a drizzle of olive oil and Sriracha chili pepper sauce, for a little extra color and just a touch of heat.

Easy, healthy, fun to serve, and most of all delicious!


Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Cocktail Recipe: Rocky Mountain High Manhattan

When our Mixologist, Wayne Temple, walked into the office today, I didn't give him a chance to speak. I told him I wanted a new recipe each week that I could share on The Dinner Conversation.

I watch Wayne make amazing cocktails every day and I thought it would be cool to share some recipes that you can try at home.

Wayne started the Cocktail Recipe series off with a simple one. The Rocky Mountain High Manhattan. This Manhattan features Breckenridge Bourbon, a petite sirah, and some hints of chocolate.

A classic Manhattan usually consists of whiskey, a sweet vermouth, and bitters. The types of whiskeys used in a Manhattan are Rye, Canadian or blended, bourbon, or Tennessee whiskeys. If you use Scotch whisky, sweet vermouth, and bitters, then the drink is called a Rob Roy.

The classic Manhattan is usually stirred with ice and then strained into a Martini glass. It can also be served over ice in an Old Fashioned (low ball) glass.

While its origins are a bit hazy most people say that the Manhattan was first created at the Manhattan Club in New York city. The cocktail is said to have been created by Dr. Iain Marshall (what a great title for the creator of a classic drink to have) for a banquet hosted by Jennie Jerome (also known as Lady Randolph Churchill, mother of Winston Churchill) in honor of presidential candidate Samuel J Tilden. The banquet was such a success that people who attended the banquet began to ask for the cocktail they were served that night by the name of the club.

"I want the Manhattan cocktail."

But there's one problem. Lady Randolph Churchill would have been pregnant and in France at the time of the banquet so the story is most likely untrue, but it is a good one.

While the original Manhattan cocktail was a mix of American whiskey, Italian vermouth, and Angostura  bitters, Wayne Temple changes things up a little bit.

Breckenridge Bourbon comes from Breckenridge, Colorado, a town better known for its skiing than for making bourbon. However, this small batch distillery uses snowmelt water to give its bourbon a unique taste.

He also uses California Green Truck Petite Sirah from Red Truck Wines in the place of sweet vermouth. This Mendocino county, California wine is made from organic grapes.

Then he adds Fee Brothers Aztec Chocolate Bitters. Fee Brothers has been making bitters since 1864. While bitters are always a must have at any bar, a selection of Fee Brothers flavored bitters helps to add multiple depths of flavor, making your cocktails unique.

Finally, he garnishes the drink with a brandied cherry. This is a simple process that adds that little something special to your garnish. Put a handful of cherries in a mason jar and cover the cherries with brandy. Let them soak for at least 24 hours. The longer they soak, the more the tastes mingle.

We have seen a growing trend amongst men in Macon to ask for a drink to be served in a rocks glass that is usually served in a Martini glass. It seems more men see the Martini glass as feminine because of all the flavored martinis that are served now a days. However, this is all a matter of taste.

Temple decided to serve this creation in a rocks glass since Breckenridge Distillery was kind enough to send Dovetail a case of really cool rocks glasses with their logo on it.

Wayne Temple's Rocky Mountain High Manhattan
(Serves one)
2oz Breckenridge Bourbon
1oz Green Truck Petite Sirah
6 dashes of Fee Brothers Aztec Chocolate Bitters
Garnished with a brandied cherry

Add the bourbon, petite sirah, and bitters to your shaker with ice. Shake vigorously. Strain into glass. Garnish with cherry.

It's as simple as that. Now all you have to do is enjoy and start a good conversation with your guests.