Need Pizza announces “Craft Beer Dinner” with Dimensional Brewing on Feb. 21st!

Need Pizza’s next beer dinner paired with some of Iowa’s finest beers and breweries will showcase not only the talents of Need’s kitchen staff but also beers from Dimensional Brewing out of Dubuque! This will be a five course ticketed meal. Stay tuned for more info or visit Need’s event page on Facebook by clicking

Harvest Dinner @ Kroul Farms Featuring Big Grove and Pullman…..AMAZING!!

chefs.jpgWhat a great way to end a weekend! Kroul Farms right outside of Mount Vernon hosted a wonderful dinner featuring chefs Benjamin Smart of Big Grove and Sepher Sadrzadeh of Pullman Bar and Diner. One word can sum up the evening: AMAZING! I couldn’t have been more impressed with the food and service and also the setting of this terrific meal.


Special thanks to the Kroul family being gracious enough to host the event and the time and work put in the by the chefs, Cory Kent and staff. If you’ve never attended a Beer Dinner make sure you put it on the top of your list. Worth every damn penny plus more! Eagerly anticipating the next time these culinary geniuses can come together and put on another masterpiece. Onto the meal!


*1st course: Marinated and Charred Local Vegetables – with this dish I wasn’t sure when I read anchovy but I’ve learned to not let that word frighten you off as that wonderful little dish adds some amazing salty/briney flavor. The sauce and the added “everything bagel” rye salt was amazing with the perfectly good vegetables. Roasted beets, potatoes, and peppers and the sweetness from the honey paired perfectly with the Big Grove West Main Wheat!

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*2nd course: Potato and Onion Confit Galette –  what is a galette? I didn’t know what is was either. Just think of a savory pie stuffed with Milton white cheddar, sliced potato and topped with a carrot romesco. Add a side salad with sherry vinaigrette and paired with a Big Grove Arms Race Pale Ale, this was a dish I would keep on eating if they would have kept putting it in front of me. Delicious!


*3rd course: Roasted Squash with Lamb Merguez sausage – lamb from Pavelka Point and made in house by Chef Benjamin Smart served in a roasted squash. The pickled flavor from the kale and the spice of the sausage was rounded out perfectly by a housemade persian cheese, which is a yogurt textured feta. Paired with a white wine, which I’m not going to pretend I know anything about wine, the spice of the sausage with the mix of the sweet acorn squash was delicious.

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*4th course: Grilled Local Mushrooms – gnocchi, mushrooms, and brussel sprouts? YES PLEASE! Add some brown butter crumbles to go with the pillowy, amazingly delicious, gnocchi and the nuttiness of the mushrooms paired with a white wine. My first chicken of the woods mushroom experience, and I’ll be clamoring for more!


*5th course: Kroul Farms Beef – being able to eat beef that had been raised 100 yards from your table was a great experience and defines “farm to table” dining. The beef was perfectly cook and the salty beef ju paired perfectly with the red wine that was served.


*6th course: Apple Strudel – Wilson’s Orchard Apples are showcased in this strudel that is glazed with a Cedar Ridge whiskey caramel sauce and smoked cinnamon ice cream. Dessert isn’t usually my favorite course but this was absolutely amazing. This dessert is what you think of when you think Fall.


**An amazing night that I hope can be re-created sooner rather than later. I implore you to get a ticket the next time there is an opportunity to attend a beer dinner. Kudos to Chef Smart and Chef Sadrzadeh for creating this amazing meal. Easy for me to say but, LET’S DO IT AGAIN!

Upcoming Oakland Road Hy-Vee Beer Dinners

foundersReceived the following email from Oakland Road Hy-Vee in Cedar Rapids:

We are coming up on an exciting time in craft beer, we are going to celebrate everything about craft beer with back to back weeks of recognizing everything that is great about craft beer. We are going to start off with the first annual Cedar Rapids Craft Beer Week. You will see lots of events going on right here in Cedar Rapids that week which will lead right into American Craft Beer Week which will focus on all American Craft Brewers. We will host a few events during these weeks and couple of which will be two fantastic beer dinners.  If you are interested in either of these beer dinners, please email me back to reserve your spot today. These should fill up fast so please be kind and only reserve a spot if you are sure you can make it.


Cedar Rapids Craft Beer Week(May 2nd– May 9th)

American Craft Beer Week(May 11th-May 17th)

Founders Beer Dinner
Monday May 4th 6:30-8:00 
Social time with a beer starting at 6:15
25 Dollars per person
Beer samples as well!!

First Course
Cheesy Beer Dip with Garlic Crisps (Served with Centennial IPA)

Second Course
Goat Cheese Roasted Beet Salad with Rubaeus Vinaigrette(Served with Rubaeus Raspberry Ale)

Third Course 
ChimiChurri Seared NY Strip Steak Risotto Cakes (Served with Dirty Bastard Ale)

Forth Course 
Double Chocolate Torte with (Served with Porter)

Tallgrass Beer Dinner
Thursday May 14th 6:30-8:00
Social time with a beer starting at 6:15
25 Dollars per person
Beer samples as well!!

First Course
Red Chili Bacon Wrapped Brat Skewers (Served with Pub Ale)

Second Course
Coconut Chicken Curry Soup (Served with Ethos IPA)

Third Course
Fresh Crab cake Sliders with Remoulade Sauce(Served with Velvet Rooster Belgian Tripel) 

Fourth Course 
Oatmeal Stout Float (Served with Buffalo Sweat Oatmeal Stout)

Lion Bridge Brewery Updates: Beer Dinner + Patio

lion bridgeI just received the following from Lion Bridge Brewing’s newsletter. A beer dinner is coming up and the menu looks absolutely specular! A lot of great things happening at Lion Bridge and the Czech Village in Cedar Rapids, check them out! Here’s more:

Hello from Lion Bridge Brewing Company!

The taproom has been open for about 6 weeks now and we have been overwhelmed by the positive reception, and overwhelmed by the amount of beer we have gone through.

We would like to thank everyone who has been able to come in for a beer and look forward to seeing you again in the future.

Look for a full battery of acoustic panels the next time you come in (should help make our old grocery store a little quieter), a patio will be put in here soon, and we are installing a projector so we can get a movie night up and running in the not-so-distant future.

We will keep you informed as we add new beers to our line up and we are excited to have our first beer dinner coming up.  The dinner includes 5 courses and 5, half-pints of Lion Bridge beer.

Where: Lion Bridge Brewing Company
             59 16th Avenue SW
             Cedar Rapids, IA
When: Tuesday, May 6th @ 6:30pm
Cost: $50

Contact us at: or reply to this email if you want to reserve a spot. Please include the number in your party and a contact phone number.  We will call to confirm your spot later this week. 

This is spur of the moment, and we are keeping it small, so please don’t hesitate.

Menu for this dinner is:

-Bar Snack of toasted barley with mixed nuts
(Belgian Amber Ale)

-Homemade Brewer’s Grain Bread with Local Butter and Radish

(Živá Voda: Pilsner)

-Asparagus Soup with Pistachio Cream
(Mad Maximillion: Belgian IPA)

-Beer Braised Brisket with Herb Sauce and Baby Potatoes in Browned Butter and Chives
(Sticke Altbier)
-Strawberries and Cream with Pretzel Crumble
(Smoked Chocolate Stout)

Now that our schedule is stabilizing, look for more email updates (but not too many) about new beers and events for the summer and beyond. 

Thanks for your interest in local beer.