TAP Craft Beer Bar: Asian Invasion (tap takeover)

Barely a week after the adrenaline-pumping action of Beerfest Asia, the good folks at TAP Craft Beer Bar are presenting the Asian Invasion - a tap takeover at their Capitol Piazza premises headlined by Asian beer. A total of 14 beers will be available on tap, from breweries in Japan, Hong Kong, Thailand and our very own Singapore.

Among their offerings is the well-received Butterfly Pea Wheat from Stone Head Thai Craft beer. this brewery has the distinction of being Thailand's first 'legal' craft beer, with production carried out in neighbouring Cambodia, and for the first time being poured at a regular establishment outside of beer festivals, the sweet nectar from Stone Head is not to be missed.

The Butterfly Pea flower lends its distinctive blue colouring to delicious nonya kuehs and when expressed in beer form, tinges it with a light raspberry hue, reminiscent of Ribena. Javin Chia, noted beer geek and aficionad0 (as well as being Singapore's youngest certified beer judge), chose the Butterfly Pea Wheat to lend off the tasting flight during our media preview. His astute selection of this brew helping to centre the tasting and reminded everyone present that this is indeed an Asian invasion.

Next up on the paddle was the Koh Kong Pale Ale, named after the brewery location of Stone Head in Cambodia. It was a light straw in color and carried a hint of mushrooms on the nose. I found it to be a suitable thirst quencher and eminently seasonable, despite it's 6% ABV.

Third on the list was the Dai Dai Ale, an English-style IPA from Japan's Hitachino Nest Beer. It has a malty mouth feel and a lingering after taste of cacao. A slow sipper, this amber potion is best enjoyed with food. Therefore, in addition to the Asian beers, TAP has also prepared a selection of small bites to go along with them. The Carnitas (pulled pork) tacos and Pollo Asado (roasted chicken) tacos come served on corn tortillas. While delicious, I found them to be a tad dry, a sentiment that was shared by my dining companion. A smear of guacamole would do wonders for the dish, I reckon, and ease its introduction to crowds more accustomed to flour tortillas.

A classic favourite makes its due appearance - Shiga Kogen IPA. This Japanese IPA is brewed in the West Coast style and showcased its floral notes like a preening beauty, putting a huge smile on thee face of my partner in crime, who couldn't get enough of this crisp ale. It certainly went well with the Beef Meatballs in tomato sauce, elevating the richness of the ground beef and adding a hoppy finish to each bite. In fact I was popping them whole in my mouth and quaffing the beer, enjoying the medley of flavors that came through.

Being in Asia, nothing says Asian so much as a home-cooked meal, and the Asian Glazed Pork Belly was the ace in the hole. Served warm and oozing richness in every bite, this dish would not be out of place in a traditional Teochew porridge dinner. The tender braised meat pairs wonderfully with the Tokyo Black from Yo-Ho Brewing. I initially thought that it would overpower the pork belly but this delightful Japanese porter was light and clean on the palate while retaining its roasted notes of chocolate. Doing a superb job of toning down the heaviness of the food and lending it a kick at the end. I heartily recommend this excellent pairing without reservation.

Unfortunately we couldn't taste all 14 beers owing to a lack of time. But do let us know your thoughts in the comments section below and I'm sure they will be a big help to all beer fans headed there.

The Asian Invasion runs till this weekend (23rd - 26th June) with the first pour happening at 5pm on Thursday. So mosey over to TAP at Capitol Piazza for a chance to drink top beer from some of the region's best breweries for a limited time only.

TAP Craft Beer Bar
15 Stamford Road
Capitol Piazza (Galleria)
t: 6384 7188

Written by Benjamin Chong. Ben loves a good craft beer. Failing that, some nice food would do too. He looks at food as a shared experience and a primary connector of people and cultures. On his own, he'd be just as happy diving into a bowl of nice cereal with really cold whole milk. As for beer, that can be enjoyed in any setting.


Anonymous said...

What do we have on from Singapore?

SiHaN said...

crossroads brewing Summer ale is on tap from Singapore!