When Cookie Met Beer, It Was Love at First Bite

On Monday, March 25th, on an early Spring* Monday in Chicago, I attended the Barley’s Angels “Girl Scout Cookie and Beer Pairing” event at the Fountainhead in Chicago’s Lincoln Square neighborhood.

Fountainhead’s Chef Cleetus Freidman introduced his chorus of five Girl Scout cookie-based bites, each paired with a beer that either complimented or contrasted with his cookie creation. When Chef Cleetus said, “I looked at the Trefoil cookie and immediately thought, that would make a great breadcrumb,” I was instantly transported to my basement couch, where I had once glued myself to watch every single Netflix episode of Food Network’s Chopped! Every. Single. Episode.

Among the five bites we enjoyed, two absolute standouts were 1) the honey banana crème brûléed Samoas, paired with Three Floyds’ Belgian Golden Ale Command Prompt and 2) the beer-battered Do-si-dos with whisky bacon peanut butter, Metropolitan Brewing Iron Works Alt syrup, and sea salt, paired with Destihl Berlinnerweiss Counter Clockweiss. Both of these pairings had an amazing contrast of sweet and savory flavors.

But by far and away, my favorite pairing was the sweet Savanna Smiles-dusted lemon cloud cake on a Thin Mint crust, paired with Begyle Brewing & Cleetus’ Dr. Dreidel’s Imperial Chanukah Porter (a collaboration brew between Begyle and Chef Friedman himself). The beer was a fluffy, smooth, chocolate delight on its own, but when paired with the tangy citrus jelly-like cloud that floated atop everyone’s favorite mint chocolate cookie (possibly containing small to medium amounts of Girl Scout crack**?), it was made all the more chocolatey and deliciously decadent.


Savanna Smiles-dusted Lemon Cloud Cake on a Thin Mint crust paired with Dr. Dreidel’s Imperial Chanukah Porter 

I also had the pleasure of meeting a handful of fantastic, beer-loving ladies, some of whom were first-time Barley’s Angels attendees like myself, and some who had been attending events since the Chicago chapter’s formation.

Many thanks to Chef Cleetus for coming up with the most deliciously creative Girl Scout cookie-based bites I (and maybe the world) have ever seen. And the biggest of thanks to Chicago Barley’ Angels event organizers Shannan and Kylie for arranging such a uniquely memorable evening.

If, like me, you want to attend the next Barley’s Angels Chicago chapter gathering, it will be a co-ed tour of Church Street Brewing in Itasca, IL on Thursday, April 9th at 6:30pm, accessible by Metra train. (And may I remind you that Metra allows train-drinking!) You can buy tickets to this event here.

Cheers, everyone!

*”Spring,” meaning it snowed 6 frickin’ inches and there was ice plastered all over the sidewalk when the day before it was a balmy 60 degrees and sunny. I never know what you’re thinking, Chicago! Why do you betray my trust?

** I don’t actually believe that the Girl Scouts of America would have their teeny ladies peddling crack-filled sweets door-to-door, and neither should you. This is just a metaphor, meant to communicate the level of addiction I feel that I, and many of my friends may have to Thin Mints, OK?

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