Shreveport's Great Raft Brewing wants to spread the word that craft brewing and cuisine have a lot in common.
“I didn’t understand why more breweries and chefs don’t work together,” says Great Raft President Andrew Nations.
Andrew, his wife Lindsay and head brewer Harvey Kenney have teamed up with the John Besh Foundation to have the brewing team work with chefs at Besh Restaurant Group locations to create food-friendly beer that focuses on local ingredients and is suited with to go with the restaurant's menu.
Borgne Chef Brian Landry worked with Great Raft's Provisions and Traditions: Volume One, which is a hoppy Kolsch style with Louisiana rice. The citrus hop aroma and flavor from the Nelson Sauvin and Amarillo hops used for dryhopping, as well as the light body provided by the rice, complement much on the seafood-focused menu at Borgne.
The beer was released during the foundation’s Fete des Chefs fundraiser in March, and was sold in draft and large format bottles at Besh restaurants, as well as local bars and wine shops.
Provisions and Traditions: Volume Two is a German-style gose beer brewed in collaboration with Johnny Sanchez's Chef Miles Landrem and released on Cinco de Mayo. The wheat-based, slightly tart, dry-finishing beer uses salt from Avery Island and coriander to add flavor to the traditional style. It pairs with Landrem’s Mexican spices and flavors at the upscale taqueria.
At 4.5 percent alcohol by volume, the gose is a good beer style for summer. Look for it at Courtyard Brewery, Elio’s Wine Warehouse, Stein’s Deli & Market, Pizza Domenica and The Avenue Pub.
The chef collaborations and styles for Volumes three and four will be announced in fall. One dollar from every beer in the Provisions and Traditions series benefits the John Besh Foundation, which provides scholarships, grants and loans to locals pursuing culinary skills.