If you’ve spent any amount of time at Novare Res—one of the greatest beer pubs in New England—you have no doubt encountered, and probably learned a thing or two from bar manager Shahin Khojastehzad. After working his way up from doorman to barback to bartender at the venerable Irish staple Brian Boru, he was equipped with the all-important skill of knowing how to interact with patrons. He also began to learn a thing or two about craft beer, which eventually became an obsession.
When I inquire about his favorite beers to drink and serve, he quickly cites Brasserie de la Senne’s Taras Boulba. “The perfect blend of complex Belgian yeast and peppery, noble European hops,” Khojastehzad says. “It’s the ideal, bone-dry thirst quencher.”
There is also the benefit of a low level of alcohol by volume, which, as Khojastehzad explains, “is crucial when confronted with all-day beer events. Taras Boulba has taken me through the home stretch on many an occasion. The beer’s brewers despise the rumor that all Belgian beers are sweet, thick booze bombs and are proud to exemplify this classic brewing tradition.”
Khojastehzad tells me that what many customers don’t realize is that Europeans have been producing “session beers,” low- alcohol alternatives for when the goal is to have many more than one, for a very long time. “At the end of the day, this beer has allowed me to drink all day when I have visited Brussels without becoming too inebriated.”
When in Belgium. (Or Portland).
4 Canal Plaza | 207.761.2437 | novareresbiercafe.com