Even our name states we are about "wine". However just like any thing in life we have evolved to encompass and learn about many subjects as we come across them
Vino Las Vegas is not only about wine but also fine dining and travel. Dining and travel can also be about another beverage known the world over as " Beer ".
While attending the Bon Appetit Vegas Uncorked events we had the opportunity to speak to a Master Beer Sommelier and learned the worlds of Fine Beer and Wine are not too far apart.
Marc Stroobandt is a Master Beer Sommelier so what a better person to speak to about Beer. We were not even aware there was such a title . Marc first became interested in speciality beers during his first year in law school in Belgium in 1982.
He had the opportunity to work side by side with Belgian brew masters and obtained a one of a kind education of Belgian beers while working at many of the renowned Belgian beer bars. Marc attended catering school and there he gained an appreciation of beer and food pairings
In 1998 Marc received world wine acclaim when he was awarded an honorary Knighthood by one of Europe's oldest trade guilds, the La Chevalerie du Fourquet des Brasseurs ( the Knighthood of the Brewer's Mashstaff ) .
We spoke with Marc about the steps of beer tasting and Marc agreed it is very similar to wine tasting. Marc suggested we start with a Cabernet Sauvignon glass which really surprised us. No frosty mugs with beers like these ! Like wine , you look at the body and color of the beer. Then on to the "nose" . Marc explained you are looking for many of the same things like the esters. In beer you are looking for the hops and other aromas that set it apart. And yes, like wine, beer has a finish as well. Food Pairing is done exactly the same way as wine. Each course is matched with a beer that either contrasts or complements the dish.
We asked Marc about his opinon about what is happening regarding the Food and Beverage industry in Las Vegas. Marc had visited Las Veags several years before. On this visit he agreed that Las Vegas has taken it's place among the world's best culinary destinations and sees no sign of letting up as more and more world renowned Chefs are coming into the city serving world class dishes.
It was an education and a pleasure to speak with Marc while he was in Las Vegas. He say he plans to return soon to enjoy more of the Culinary experience of the city. Marc is currently the director and master beer sommelier for the F&B Partnership and lives in London England.