Jakes Beer Dinner is a great little event that takes place a couple times a year at Jake's American Bar, which is in the Loews Royal Pacific Resort. The popular restaurant has a private event space called the "Clipper Room" which can seat (by my best guess) between 60 and 80 guests.
The format is solid... an invited brewery presents four or five beers and the chef's at Jake's create dishes that pair with, compliment, and/or highlight the charter of the beer.
Ladies, if you've tried getting your guys to vertical wine pairings (unsuccessfully), here's your gateway event. Guys understand beer. You drink it, not sip it… but the chef's at Jake's do an amazing job with the visiting brewery and they even manage to infuse a beer or two right into the dish. Everyone comes away happy!
There are usually three courses, an amuse course and a dessert course, for a total of five beer and food pairing opportunities. The three "official" courses are what I would call "medium plates", while the amuse and dessert courses are small plates… which is how it should be. Here's a tip though… make sure you show up a couple of minutes early. There's a standing reception area outside the front door of Jake's, and once you're checked-in, you'll be directed to that area. The cool thing is… there's usually a passed beer sample and some hors d'oeuvres before the event even begins!
For each dinner, the visiting brewery changes... so naturally the beers and nature of the food changes a bit from event to event. On the dinner I attended (and therefore the one that's in our photo gallery here at Mealtrip.com), Funky Buddha Brewery supplied five amazing beers.
When it comes to food and beer pairing, I'm a big Funky Buddha fan because they brew beer with unique and bold character. Everyone tasting Funky Buddha beers with food can join in on the conversation about the pairing (i.e. you don't have to be a Cicerone to tell the difference between Funky Buddha beers)… and that makes the communal nature of these dinners so much more fun.