Brewing In the FLX: Baklava Brown Ale

Greek Sweets is a staple in the Greater Rochester area. One of the only of its kind. And it has been a great friend to the next staple of the neighborhood…Strangebird Brewery.
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By David Diehl

We are sure that everyone knows what baklava is. Baklava is a filo pastry made with chopped nuts and sweetened with honey.

Excellent.

Now, let’s remember that this is an article about beer. Who would’ve thought?

Greek Sweets is a staple in the Greater Rochester area. One of the only of its kind. And it has been a great friend to the next staple of the neighborhood…Strangebird Brewery.

Located on Marshall Avenue, Strangebird is likely to become one of the most unique and creative breweries in our region. And what makes them even more special, is that they care very much about the community and the businesses that have supported them in their build.

“The Baklava Brown Ale is a collaboration between Strangebird and Greek Sweets. They are located on Monroe Avenue. Voula Katsetos-Stratton, owner of Greek Sweets, is an old family friend, she and my wife are childhood friends as a matter of fact. And we here rely on her for our lunches quite often,” admits Eric Salazar, Strangebird Brewer. “We love Voula, we love what she’s about. This beer is about a collaboration with the community. It’s about supporting people that we love and doing something creative with somebody that we think has wonderful food and is a creative person herself.”

With the Strangebird taproom and restaurant on the cusp of opening to the public, they are steadfast in creating beers that are extremely original and hope to put their footprint on the craft beer community.

“When we started over here brewing Strangebird beer, we decided to create a baklava beer. To my knowledge that hasn’t been done,” says Salazar.  “It’s a brown beer base, and the flavor profile and aroma come from a spice reduction that was made at Greek Sweets.  This spice mix is added post fermentation. This reduction has cinnamon, vanilla, you’re going to taste some orange – a little citrusy – and you’ll get some rose water in the aroma as well.”

The Baklava Beer release event will be held Friday evening between 5 and 7pm, at Greek Sweets on Monroe Avenue, and yes she will have baklava.

It was always a goal for David Diehl to return to the Finger Lakes and make an imprint on the beer culture of the region. A Hobart & William Smith Colleges graduate, Diehl spent over a decade in Brooklyn and is excited to be back and taking on Finger Lakes craft beer reviews and commentaries for EdibleFingerLakes.com.  He has also been published in Inked Magazine, YRB Magazine, Nerve.com, and The Finger Lakes Times. You can follow his work at FLXWORDS.com.

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