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Brewery Ommegang’s Hop Chef Competition Coming to Philly

21 June 2012

Anyone who appreciates craft beer and fine food already knows that for food, beer is the perfect pairing—better even, perhaps, than wine. Whether or not you believe that to be true, your beliefs will be put to the test on Tuesday, July 10 at 7:00p.m. at World Café LiveBrewery Ommegang has picked six of Philadelphia’s hottest young chefs to compete in their Hop Chef competition for a chance to represent Philly at Ommegang’s annual Belgium Comes to Cooperstown event.

Each of the six chefs will be creating two dishes to pair with beer, which will be served to a panel of judges as well as to all attendees.  The truly impressive line-up of chefs features Joe Cicala of Le Virtu, Jon Cichon of LaCroix, Jason Cichonski of Ela, Nicholas Elmi of Rittenhouse Tavern, George Sabatino of Stateside and Scott Schroeder of South Philadelphia Tap Room and American Sardine Bar.  You can follow the chefs on Twitter via the #HopChef hashtag as they taste beers and create dishes, which will be judged based on five pairing principles:

Simple Pairing: a direct interaction between food and beer;
Incorporation: utilizing beer in the cooking process;
Mimicking: matching the flavor profile of a dish with the flavor profile of a beer;
Story Telling: tracing the history of the dish and the beer;
Experimental: making beer the star of the dish.

The Philadelphia event is the final Hop Chef event in a series of cook-offs across the country, which will culminate in the Grand Hop Chef cookoff at Brewery Ommegang’s Belgium Comes to Cooperstown on August 4.  The competition is also part of the Ommegang program “Great Beer Deserves Great Food,” a national initiative dedicated to the idea that fine beer deserves its rightful place at the table with fine food.

“Beer and food belong together,” says Megan Maguire, Ommegang Market Manager.  “We can’t wait to see what the chefs will dream up.”  If you’d like to see what the chefs are able to dream up (and why wouldn’t you?), you can check the Hop Chef section of the Great Beer Deserves Great Food website or purchase tickets for $55 at the Brown Paper Tickets website.  You can also follow Ommegang on Twitter at @BreweryOmmegang and @OmmegangPhilly.

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