INTRODUCING OUR NEW CHEF

VOTE FOR CANADA'S NEXT GREAT BEER FLAVOUR

INTRODUCING OUR NEW CHEF

By Russel

I’d like to introduce myself as the Head Chef of events at Innis & Gunn, which is particularly exciting as I’m the first person in the role.  The first time I saw the  company’s HQ venue it was little more than a building site, but I’m happy (and relieved!) to say that I now have my very own custom built, shiny professional kitchen to play around with beer and food.  If anyone has heard of a better job please let me know…


I run my own private catering business: Russell Up, specialising in high end private dining.  I trained in Edinburgh, and have completed multiple seasons cooking abroad and I now work for Innis & Gunn on a freelance basis for their events at HQ at Randolph Crescent.


Innis & Gunn celebrates its 10th birthday this year, and I definitely feel like the new guy!  Ten years has produced some amazing beers which have great food matching qualities.  So far we have made goats cheese and strawberry beer profiteroles, three different beer flavoured chocolate truffles and Rum Finish bread to name only a few.  The beer bread was my personal favourite, and I’d encourage anyone to try it out.  Simply replace the water in any recipe with an equivalent volume of Rum Finish or Original.  The last batch worked particularly well with walnuts and raisins added to the mix.  Definitely worth trying out to enjoy with some good farmhouse cheese. 


We applied the same ethos to the food as is applied in the beer making process.  We’re not doing anything off the wall or crazy; the best Scottish ingredients are carefully cooked with balance and consideration.  I cooked for Dougal and Leila (the Events Manager) as the ‘audition’ back in March and I’m told the pickled carrots clinched it!  The main course I cooked that day has now become something of a signature dish.  Slow cooked loin and crispy belly of Scottish lamb are paired with pearl barley, watercress, roasted carrot purée and the famous pickled carrots; with a rich sauce of I&G Original.


In the coming months we plan to start developing some products and dishes smoked using the oak wood chips left over from the oak ageing process.  Using our own unique wood will give us a new interesting level of flavour to meats and fish, and should make them pair particularly well with the beers.  An exciting part of cooking with Innis & Gunn is the seasonal additions to the core range.  Food seasons are so important to us all now, and it’s great when this can be paired to seasonal specials.  Right now, I’m really looking forward to using the darker winter beers which give great colour and depth to sauces. 


I’ll be back on the blog soon with some recipe ideas, and in the meantime feel free to share any I&G recipe ideas on our facebook page.

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