Popover Café & Bakery Farm to Table Dinner
Popover Café & Bakery opened over the summer in Simsbury, CT. It’s located at 928 Hopmeadow Street – the space previously occupied by Metro Bis restaurant.
The café specializes in gluten free, vegan and other healthy and tasty traditional options with locally sourced ingredients.
The café serves an array of pastries and delectable breakfasts, lunches and brunch. In addition, the restaurant has been hosting a series of farm-to-table dinners featuring some of the state’s best-known chefs.
I attended their second Chefs Farm to Table event on August 20. The dinner’s theme was beer and barbeque.
Tyler Anderson, executive chef at Millwrights Restaurant and Tavern in Simsbury cooked up an array of barbeque creations.
They were paired with beers from Black Hog Brewing Company, a new craft brewery in Oxford, CT.
Pamela Paydos, one of the owners and former proprietor of The Iron Frog pub, welcomed everyone to the dinner.
The dinner was set up in family-community style seating.
Pamela introduced Chef Anderson and our Beer Steward, Jason Sobocinski – one of the owners of Black Hog Brewery.
Chef Anderson explained that the dishes he prepared were not your typical barbeque dishes.
He asked us to think of barbeque in the sense of the flavors and the outdoor cooking methods.
Jason from Black Hog explained how the brewery’s name came from the nickname for a Berkshire pig. The name conjures up pig roasts with people coming together as a community and celebrating over some brews.
He mentioned that the beers we were about to have would begin with a heavier beer and end with the lighter ones.
Our first course consisted of “BBQ Carrots” that were picked fresh from Chef Anderson’s garden. The carrots were brined overnight with barbeque spices and roasted. They were served over a raw zucchini slaw with a yogurt, sesame seed and mint sauce. The BBQ Carrots were paired with Ginga Nija beer. It’s a red IPA brewed with fresh ginger.
Next we were served grilled oysters that were roasted for one minute in pork butter with pickled ramps.
While I am not an oyster eater, I admit that the flavor was amazing! The oysters were paired with THC Chinook beer. It’s from the brewery’s Hop Collection and had hints of mild pineapple.
The main entrée consisted of smoked porchetta served over baked beans and sunflower seed granola.
It was paired with the Granola Brown beer, which has a mix of oatmeal, grain, hops and roasted malts. While the beer is dark in color, it has a light bodied flavor with a clean finish that quickly drops off.
Following a European tradition, our next course consisted of a pre-dessert with cheese to cleanse the pallet prior to our sweet dessert. It involved organic strawberries that had been macerated in strawberry Gose (a German beer) with a pickled watermelon slice served in a hollowed popover. We couldn’t finish our meal at Popover Café without one of their famous popovers! A buffalo crostini cheese accompanied the popover with strawberries. FLS Gose beer was served with this course. It’s from the brewery’s farmland series that are released quarterly featuring one or more locally grown items.
The meal concluded with citrus cake that had thinly sliced grapefruit, tarragon sage meringue and white chocolate anglaise. The sweet dessert was paired with SWAG beer. It’s the brewery’s summer wheat ale with grapefruit peel.
As expected, it was another fantastic meal by Chef Tyler Anderson. His food creations are always amazing works of art that elevate the freshness factor by using local and responsibly raised ingredients.
Popover café & bakery is a charming new place in the Farmington Valley. I look forward to eating breakfast and/or lunch there soon!
Have you tried Popover Café & Bakery in Simsbury?
Have you eaten at Chef Anderson’s Millwrights Restaurant in Simsbury?
Have you tried any of Black Hog Brewery’s beers?
Disclaimer: While I was invited to the Popover Café & Bakery Farm to Table Dinner by the restaurant’s owner, the opinions and views expressed above are my own and describe my personal experience at the event.