I wouldn’t call Delaware my favorite place in the U.S. It’s nothing personal; more a product of overexposure than anything else (and it’ll always be my first home). It’s also not without its perks: living here is cheaper than it would have been in Burlington, for one. Familiarity is another that goes a very long way. It’s in that spirit of familiarity that I’ve decided to resurrect Argilla Monthly, my series on the rotating flavors at a local brew pub and pizzeria.
They’re still knocking pizza and beer out of the park; it’s a match made in heaven, but when both are handmade in the same place, it’s like fireworks. This month, they’ve cooked up a Thanksgiving delight: the Tiger Mash. I’m always fond of nontraditional pizza bases, even when they include ingredients I don’t like on their own. I’m speaking of the orange in the Tiger Mash—sweet potato. It’s a combination of regular and sweet potatoes forming the base, with a healthy layer of mozzarella cheese and topped with roasted turkey, dried cranberries, and fresh sage.
Eating this pizza was the first time I’d ever tasted sweet potato in a dish and not been bothered by the flavor. In fact, the notes that came through actually managed to add to my dining experience. It just goes to show that you can’t judge a dish by its ingredient list. I’d also never been aware of tasting sage in a dish before, and I quite liked it. I’m amazed by the amount of flavor packed into this pizza despite the relatively few ingredients.
Unfortunately, I have less to say about my beer this time around. Boogsley’s Pumpkin Ale is classified as a spiced amber ale. It’s brewed with real pumpkin and spiced with a mix of cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg. It’s a good beer, particularly since it contrasts the rampant IPA craze infecting almost every brewery I know. There are ways to flavor beer besides hops, but such beers seem to be becoming scarcer within the craft scene. Boogsley’s is certainly refreshing on that front, but as a pumpkin beer, it leaves some to be desired. My experience with Argilla tells me they absolutely used pumpkin in the brewing process, but sadly it hardly comes through in the finished product. Still, though, it’s a delicious spiced ale that succeeds as a beer, just not necessarily a pumpkin beer.
It’s nice to know that some things never change. I’ll always know my way around the roads here, for instance. Argilla and Pietro’s will always be making magic for our consumption, too. If you’re a lover of the annual November feast, the flavors they have to offer this month are right up your alley.