Upon arrival, we were seated at a large table with other couples in order to make sure they could maximize the space. Sometimes these set-ups can be a bit awkward, but we lucked out by having nice people at our table. To start off the evening there were a variety of passed appetizers, which included a salt cured ham biscuit with orange marmalade. Normally I am not a jam or jelly person but this added some nice flavor, and the jelly texture (thankfully) did not really come across. The biscuit was well cooked and did not overwhelm the ham. Hush puppies with cheddar and scallions were also passed around. I liked these, but Nick loved them. The dipping sauce had a good "zip" to it. Finally, there was smoked salmon on brioche with citrus creme fraiche, but unfortunately it never made its way to our table, which was fine with Nick since he doesn't care for salmon. To accompany these great appetizers, we were given pints of Harpoon's UFO White. It was fun to see the difference in tastes of the beer when it is properly matched with food - much like wine. Nick doesn't always care for white beers, but he really did like this one when it was served with the food.
For our official first course we were poured some Harpoon Belgian Style Pale Ale.
Having been to the brewery a few times, I knew I was a fan of this beer regardless of the pairing! The first course was a chilled New England Seafood terrine with lobster, scallops, leeks and tarragon aioli.
For the main course, we were given a small glass of the Leviathan Imperial IPA, which is Harpoon's answer to the BIG, bold IPAs saying their traditional IPA was not big enough.
Finally, they passed out the dessert beer! Again, it was from the Leviathan series, but this time it was the Barleywine.
For dessert we were served an espresso semifredo with pistachio praline and barleywine gastrique.
After the satisfying meal, the chef and the brew masters actually walked around to each of the tables, asking us about the meal and answering any of our questions. This was a great added element to the evening that I wasn't expecting. You could tell that they all put in some effort to come up with a great meal and thought about which beers to offer with them to make both shine. Also, one thing we did confirm from Harpoon is that their 100 barrel series Oyster Stout is actually making a comeback - and soon, too! We were really excited to hear about this and will be heading down to the brewery ASAP.
So, another trip to Union Bar and Grill and once again a fantastic meal. The fixed menu offered some options that I was totally skeptical of but so happy I tried - I'm learning a lot about some new foods that I do not think I am brave enough to cook on my own but would readily order again. I cannot wait for the next beer night, or even just another dining experience at Union!