Slideshow: Underground Goat Dinner With Virtue Cider, Stillwater Ales
Dinner at Underground Goat.

Seems like only yesterday that Stephanie Izard was seemingly making a career out of underground dinners to build interest for her upcoming restaurant. But now the term “Underground Goat” refers to the basement dining room in her (hugely successful) restaurant Girl & the Goat, and last night twenty guests joined her there for a beer dinner celebrating the launch of Virtue Cider, the new venture from ex-Goose Island honcho Greg Hall. (It was billed as the first preview of his cider… though it wasn’t quite the first first preview, and apparently won’t be the last, since there’s also one at the Hideout on April 12.) Also on hand as a special brewmaster guest was Brian Strumke of Stillwater Artisanal Ales, with several interesting brews including the Stateside Saison and a lavender-tinged ale called Of Love & Regret. Our man Huge Galdones was there in the basement, snapping away at the porkerrific things being served to go with these terrific brews, and he passes along word that when some version of the BBQ ham and fried naan dish (which he likened in effect to a gordita) hits the Little Goat menu, as was suggested it would, you want it, very very much. Here’s his slideshow from the basement last night.

A group of 20 assembled in the Underground Goat, Girl & The Goat’s basement dining room. Greg Hall of Virtue Cider stands at left.
Smoked whipped fat back (left) and pork rilletes accompanied by apple sauce and biscuits, paired with Virtue Cider. 
BBQ ham, fried naan, and citrus slaw served with the Stillwater Stateside Saison.
Greg Hall talks about the thinking behind Virtue Cider’s product line, and his trips to great cider makers in the U.S. and Europe. His firkin is beside him.
Artichoke fideos, pork sausage, sofia and garlic crunch on top. paired with Stillwater’s “Of Love and Regret”~ a very floral (lavender) beer named for the fact that the flowers are associated with those two sentiments.
Fried pickles!
Two chefs carry half a pig in porchetta form.
Dessert. Chocolate brownie, Beecher’s flagship reserved cheese and rye coffee crackers.
Stephanie looks on as Brian Strumke of Stillwater talks about his beers.
Slideshow: Underground Goat Dinner With Virtue Cider, Stillwater Ales