For me, the words molecular gastronomy evoke the image of a chef reducing an entire herd of cows to a teaspoon of foam, dolloping it on a sliver of envirobiodynamorganically farmed seaweed, and calling it his twist on “surf and turf.” Yeah, there is some merit in this style of cooking, but there is also a lot of hype. It’s kind of like how people get excited when anyone with a Michelin star—or three—comes to town. You obviously need to know something about cooking to get such a star, but it doesn’t mean I’ll like that foam better than my Mom’s scalloped potatoes. Frankly, the only foam I want is atop my beer.
Which brings me to the point, namely, that a beer made in cooperation with chef Ferran Adria from Spain’s El Bulli, arguably the world’s most famous restaurant and one associated with molecular gastronomy, is now available in Beijing. The beer is made by Estrella Damm and called Inedit, is distributed by Dxcel, and should be at restaurants such as Carmen, Salt, Le Sushi, and Room by now. It comes in a 750 ml bottle and the promotional materials say it is designed to pair with food, including those with flavors–such as vinegar–that can be a challenge for wine.
I have tried this beer twice: once a few weeks ago at Sequoia Cafe and once during the Beer Jing event organzied last year by Dxcel, City Weekend, and Danger Doyle’s. I found it light and refreshing, even a little spritzy, with mostly citrus flavors but also some vegetable and licorice ones. And it had foam, pouring with a nice frothy head. All in all, this beer reminded me of Hoegaarden. For other opinions, check out this post on Beer Advocate, where the scores are all over the place.