The Good Life in Massapequa Park recently hosted a morning of brunch, education and sour beer. And when we say morning, we aren’t kidding. The day began bright and early at 9 a.m. and attracted nearly 40 people to eat, drink and listen to Michael Tonsmeire, author of American Sour Beers, speak.
Pete Mangouranes, owner of the Good Life, is no stranger to beer dinners, but he has only hosted a couple “beer brunches” so far. Andrew Luberto, chair of the education committee for local club Long Island Beer and Malt Enthusiasts approached Mangouranes with the idea. He was interested but had to carefully consider the selections saying, “First thing in the morning even OJ tastes sour.” Though sours are quickly becoming the next big thing in craft beer, they can still be polarizing, so Mangouranes wanted to ease diners into it.
He opened with biscuits and gravy paired with kombucha, which really is a fermented low alcohol tea. “We thought the kombucha was a nice cup of tea, so to say.” Next up was a dry, slightly sour pear cider paired with a tomato frittata. “It’s brunch, there’s gotta be an egg in there somewhere,” says Mangouranes. He closed with a rich, broth based noodle bowl with mushrooms and greens. This was paired with Rodenbach. “I wanted to hit you with a real traditional sour,” he adds.
Though sour beers may sound intimidating or rather unappetizing, Mangouranes created a pairing menu that accented their flavors without overpowering the food. Tonsmeire was able to offer a brief education on the style while even answering questions from some home brewers in the crowd. This duo gave a whole new meaning to the term “boozy brunch.”