What happens when an Asian-American chef with an affinity for drinking tea stumbles upon an NPR story touting coffee as the new wine, with all the same nuances and depth in pairing? How about an experiment in creativity, flavor, boundaries and partnership?
Chef Cindy Liu, of Loo Hoo’s Asian Comfort Food, offered up a challenge and a hand of partnership to Jennifer and John Wheir, of Beacon Coffee Company after hearing about the
complexities of coffee on the radio. The goal was to take four beautifully rich and unique estate coffees masterfully roasted locally in Ventura, CA and pair them with equally flavorful and eclectic dishes that would highlight both sides in balance.
As an attendee, I will attest to a challenge accepted, accomplished and confirmed with the dinging bell of caffeinated victory. All of the dishes provided different elements, such as sweetness, creaminess richness and acidity that accentuated similar notes in the coffees and balanced opposing notes. Without smell-a-blogs or lickable screens, you’ll need to take my word for it. Trust me though, coffee may very well be fighting for its place on tables and during meals served throughout all hours of the day. Let the photos inspire you to pour a hot cup of joe with your next dinner.