If you've read this blog in the past 6 months you should be quite familiar with my review of the best beer bar in the world, The Malted Barley in Westerly, RI. I was ecstatic when I did my review of this spot for many, many great reasons. I am still yearning to treck across the state of Connecticut just to have a sip of the fine brews they carry, and to also allow the delicious cornocopia of pretzels they serve to slide down my gullet, and into my belly. That being said, I couldn't contain my enthusiasm for this spot, and even while I sat at the bar I was texting photos to my friends Mark and Laura knowing full well that they too would be coming out to the Eastern Connecticut/Rhode Island area in a few weeks as well. I believe I said to them, "You need to try this spot, it's simply that incredible".
Well, sure enough on their visit to Foxwoods Casino Mark and Laura made it a point to stop at The Malted Barley. It was no surprise to me when I started receiving texts from them at the bar, such as "Holy shit this place is so awesome" and "I can't believe this spot". I was living vicariously through them that weekend, and I knew exactly the overwhelming feeling of joy, excitement, and raw pleasure they were feeling while sitting in that dimly lit bar in southern Rhode Island.
Around mid March Laura, Mark, my girlfriend Alissa and I decided to have a "Malted Barley Recreation Party". It turned out that Mark and Laura had been perfecting a pretzel recipe for a few weeks, and they were eager to share in the enjoyment with us. We were so very excited. Since we all live nearly three hours away from The Malted Barley, it was our idea to try to recreate the amazing atmosphere that we all experienced in that amazing bar in Westerly, RI.
The night was a huge success, and it was chock full of pretzels and delicious beers. We made a batch of salted pretzels, as well as a batch of pepperoni and mozarella stuffed pretzels dusted with parmesan and served with pesto butter, and a batch of jalapeno and cheddar stuffed pretzels. All of them came out fantastic! Nice and crisp on the outside, and soft and chewy on the inside with huge bursts of runny cheeses, pepperoni and spicey jalapenos! The pesto butter was the perfect pairing for the pepperoni and mozarella stuffed pretzel, and so was the Tilted Smile Imperial Pilsner by Uinta brewing.
Speaking of beers, we wanted to make sure we captured the variety of brews you can get at The Malted Barley as well. We had a vast array of malt treasures to choose from that night. The pictures below capture a good fraction of what we had that night, and how varied our selections were. It was interesting to see how different beers paired differently with each pretzel we baked. By the way, Detour IPA by Uinta paired with the jalapeno and cheddar pretzel was killer. The hops complimented the hell out of the spicey jalapenos, and so did the strong alcohol taste on the finish.
As you can see, we had one hell of a night recreating one of the best bar experiences any of us have ever had. Until we all can find time to treck back out to Westerly, Rhode Island I am sure we'll be doing this again, and coming up with new and varied pretzels, as well as beer pairings to have with them. Thanks a lot for the good time Mark, Laura, Alissa and everyone at The Malted Barley, and thanks for the inspiration!
And The Utimate Party Animal...RORI!