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Thoughts on Beer & Food, Home & Away

Beer, Goat & More Beer
Posted Monday, July 2nd, 2012 by thewimperoo

Many months ago, I asked my wife where she wanted to go out for her birthday knowing that many of the places that she'd be likely to select would need a reservation made at that time.  Her choice was Girl and the Goat.  A trendy restaurant located in the West Loop on Randolph St.  Girl and the Goat is most noticeably famous for its "celebrity" chef.  Top Chef Season 4 winner, Stephanie Izard.  Even prior to Top Chef, Stephanie was putting out remarkable food at now shuttered Scylla.  Her style of cooking is rustic, mixing together many ingredients that you wouldn't think of putting together.  Enough background, this past Saturday was the night and here's a recap.

With traffic what it can be, we left home a bit earlier than usual to head down into the City.  Surprisingly it wasn't as bad as expected so we had a little bit of time before our reservation to relax.  Considering Haymarket is mere steps from G&tG, it made for a a nice place to have a beer or two before dinner.  A rare treat was on tap, Indignant; a Templeton Rye barrel aged Imperial Stout.  The base beer had been sitting in barrels for the past 7 months.  The beer was quite barrel forward in its aroma and flavor.  A definite sipper for sure, paired well with the 90+ degree weather.  A few other tastes were imbibed.  An all Cascade IPA (very citrusy, highly drinkable), a Porter (solid, if nothing else) and the always delicious Mathias (Citra bomb of a DIPA).  After those drinks were consumed it was time to eat.

The G&tG menu consists for 3 main sections, V, F, M as well as a special for rotating goat dishes.  Everything is small plates meant for sharing.


The beer and cocktail list are solid.  Only 4 draft choices, but at least 1 is usually a Floyds product.  Bottle list is interesting, but overpriced as most restaurant lists are.  I figured on a hot night, I'd stick with an easy drinker that pairs well with most anything.  Gumballhead


You order all of the dishes that you plan to eat right at the start, and then the kitchen paces the meal from there. They recommend 2-3 dishes per person. Since we've been there before we know that it's better to lean towards the lower side as they are not stingy with the portion sizes.

First course that they brought out was Ham Frites.  These are standard Belgian style frites, dusted with a Ham Salt and served with two dipping sauces.  One a smoked tomato aioli and the other a beer cheddar sauce.  I'm a sucker for frites/fries of almost any persuasion.  Top them with ham salt and well, let's just say it wasn't a tough choice.  The smoked tomato aioli was killer.  One thing I'd say is that while the frites were delicious, I wouldn't ever order them again unless I was with a much bigger group.  The amount they serve you is huge.  We only ate the frites down to where the top of the bowl started and felt like that was more than enough.

Next course was grilled goat loin on top of a ratatouille of zucchini, summer squash, onions and tomatoes with a tarragon sauce.  The goat was cooked to a perfect rare/med rare.  Very tender with excellent "goaty" flavor.  

The third course was one that we debated back and forth when trying to decide what to select.  It was between a crispy braised pork shank & wood grilled chicken with fried pickles and naan.  The wife finally made the final decision to go with the chicken.  Even though chicken is such a common item, when done well it can be a real delight.  This dish was just that.  Half a chicken grilled over a wood fire, with a sauce of Asian flavors. Simple, but bursting with flavor.  The naan was a great utensil for sopping up all of the delicious juices and sauce.  A complement to the dish was tempura fried pickles with a yuzu harissa and scallion aioli.  Really enjoyed the bright flavor of the harissa.  

The fourth and final savory dish of the night was grilled broccoli with Rogue's Creamery Smokey Bleu and spiced crispies.  I was a big fan of the vegetable dishes that we had in my previous visit so we wanted to get a different one this time and the broccoli didn't disappoint.  I'm not a huge bleu cheese fan, but this preparation made for a milder flavor that complemented the broccoli quite well.  

After these dishes, we were feeling quite good. So we decided to select a dessert.  The most interesting item was a zucchini cake with eggplant, lemon mascarpone and a dried tomato caramel powder.  A combination of ingredients that sound a bit weird, but really came together.  I'm not huge on dessert, but something like this that isn't super sweet or heavy is what I lean towards every time.  

I would be remiss if I didn't mention a couple of other dishes that, in my opinion, are most order plates for your first visit.  The Cauliflower dish (grilled cauliflower, pine nuts, pickled peppers and mint) and Pig Face (roasted pig face, sunny side up egg, tamarind maple sauce, and potato stix).  

To conclude the night, we drove up to the taproom in the new Revolution Brewery on Kedzie.  A really nice space, walled and chain link fenced off from the brewery.  The wood of the long bar looks similar to the one at the brewpub.  The stools are comfy leather backed chairs.  Only problem was that I overlooked the fact that since this is in a giant brewery warehouse, there was no air conditioning.  This meant a much shorter stop than anticipated.  A glass of Double Fist and a few samplers and we were on our way.  For now I'll continue to frequent the brewpub as often as possible, but when the weather cools down, I'll definitely be back.  

I'll probably blog the StL trip that Dave and I are taking in a couple of weeks, and then Great Taste.  Looking forward to both.  Thanks for reading!