Beer versus wine

  • <p>FILE PHOTO</p><p>Grand Banker owner Adam Bower before the restaurant undertook renovations which include four new beer taps among other design changes that have already taken place.</p>

Lunenburg's Grand Banker Bar & Grill is gearing up to host its fourth Winemaker vs. Brewmaster event on May 4, its first to coincide with Nova Scotia's Craft Beer Week.

But don't expect to see the its own brew at the competition table next week or, for that matter, ever.

Grand Banker's new craft beer won't be on tap until July.

In any case, although owner Adam Bower says he thought about bringing his suds into the arena at some point, he's not sure it's something the "host venue" should do.

"It's possible, but it may be an awkward position to play...there should be no home team advantage here," Bower said.

Rather, the event will spar Alex Morozov of Benjamin Bridge against Carl Whiffen of Uncle Leo's Brewery, as they compete to offer the parings most preferred by diners sitting down to a special menu.

Speaking to LighthouseNOW on Arpil 25, Bower said, "We just sent the menu off to them yesterday. And they don't have any input in there at all."

Having received the menu, the two competitors have to look at "their arsenal of products" and choose the best pairings for each course.

Although the menu now has been posted on the Grand Banker's Facebook page, diners will have "no clue" what the pairings will be until they're offered them.

Bower first introduced the winemaker vs. brewmaster event about seven years ago when he was working at the Halifax Club.

More and more winemakers and brewers have come into the picture since then.

"There's a lot to chose from," says Bower who tries to use a different wine maker and brewmaster each time.

The Grand Banker regularly serves Benjamin Bridge wine by the glass and has Uncle Leo's on tap.

"The two are really good representation of wineries and breweries in Nova Scotia. And I choose ones that I know will come up with some great parings."

But he hastens to add that all the wineries and breweries the restaurant features are high quality. "I have a lot of passion for what they do."

He emphasized that in the current renovations to accommodate his own beer, he's adding four more taps.

"Because I don't want to take away from all the different local breweries that I'm offering right now. I'm actually going to grow our selection of other breweries, as opposed to shrink it," said Bower.

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