Cypress Creek, Ghost Harbor team up for special menu
By William F. West
Saturday, July 28, 2018
That’s how Jaiquan Jordan described his Wednesday dinner that was cooked at a downtown restaurant using beer from a nearby craft brewery.
Jordan, who is a car salesman at Perry Auto Group, and two others dined at Cypress Creek Grill on racks of lamb infused with beer from Ghost Harbor Brewing.
Cypress Creek is located on Water Street, just a few blocks from Ghost Harbor, which is on Colonial Avenue. The two downtown venues teamed up to offer a five-course craft beer dinner menu, also known as a “tap takeover.” The event lasted from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., Wednesday.
Jordan didn’t know the restaurant was offering the lamb cooked with beer until he saw the menu.
“And I just said, ‘Well, it looks pretty good’,” he said. “It was paired really well.”
Asked whether he would like the restaurant to do this again, he said, “Sure, absolutely.”
“This is probably one of my favorite restaurants here in Elizabeth City,” he added.
Wednesday evening wasn’t the first time Jordan had eaten food cooked with beer. He noted he had done so in Indianapolis, in Chapel Hill and in Raleigh.
Zach Boslau, who’s the finance manager at Perry’s Performance Chevrolet, said he did know about the special menu at Cypress Creek.
“And I was really excited to try it,” Boslau said.
Boslau noted he has been a friend of Cypress Creek Grill owner and executive chef Brad Chambers since childhood and also said he goes to Ghost Harbor.
Boslau said he believed such an effort by the restaurant and the craft brewery is a boost to a downtown Elizabeth City in the midst of a revitalization program.
“Two is more powerful than one. So, you’re kind of doing good for both of ‘em by having something like this,” he said. “And it has been really nice.”
The other member of the trio was Calvin Morrow, of Raleigh. Morrow works for Zurich Insurance and is a business partners of the Perrys.
“It was very good, very moist – great flavor,” Morrow said of the rack of lamb.
“This is actually my third time at this restaurant,” he said. “That’s how much I like the place – and I don’t even live here.”
“So, every time I come to town I try to find a way to get here,” he said.
Cypress Creek is ranked second on the list of best restaurants in Elizabeth City by followers of tripadvisor.com, a travel website. Montero’s presently holds the No. 1 ranking.
Ghost Harbor co-operator Thomas Reese said Chambers and Cypress Creek manager Eric Stanley dropped by the brewery probably a month and a half ago.
“And we were chit-chatting and they said, ‘You know what? This would be a great idea (to have a special menu). We could pair up and we could take some of your beer, put it together with a dish,” Reese said.
Asked his reaction at the time, Reese said, “I thought it was awesome.”
He said his response to Cypress Creek was, “Let’s do it.”
Stanley said that actually Wednesday evening marked the third time Cypress Creek was the scene of a craft beer dinner. On the other two occasions, Cypress Creek offered meals blended with beers from Highland Brewing in Asheville and Natty Greene’s Brewing in Greensboro.
Stanley said he believed featuring local beer this time would be great.
Asked about the customers’ reaction, he said, “So far, excellent.”
Cypress Creek was drawing quite a crowd, with Stanley saying, “I’m telling you, we’re slammed right now.”
“On a normal Wednesday night, we probably wouldn’t be half this busy,” he said.