1 tablespoon Gil’s Double Garlic Extra Virgin Olive Oil (plus extra for drizzling)
2 thick slices of bacon, chopped
1/2 cup yellow onion, peeled and diced
1/2 cup red bell pepper, diced
1/2 cup celery, diced
2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
1 teaspoon Big Sur Cowboy Rub
3 tablespoons all purpose flour
12oz pumpkin beer
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
3 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1/4 cup heavy cream
6oz cheddar cheese, grated
2 teaspoons fresh parsley, chopped
Rustic bread, toasted, for dipping
Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add the bacon, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the bacon begins to brown. Add onion, red bell pepper, celery, and garlic to the pot, stir to combine with the bacon, and sauté for 5 minutes or until the vegetables are tender. Add cowboy rub and flour, stir to coat the veggies, and continue to cook for another minute, stirring frequently.
Deglaze the pot with beer, stir to combine, making sure to scrape up any of those desirable brown bites on the bottom of the pot. Bring to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes or until the beer has reduced by half.
Add the pumpkin puree, broth, and cream to the pot, stir to combine, and bring to a simmer. Simmer for 15 minutes or until the soup has thickened slightly. Reduce heat to low and begin adding the cheese to the soup, one handful at a time, whisking until the cheese has melted before adding the next handful.
Divide soup between bowls and sprinkle with chopped parsley. Drizzle the soup with a little olive oil and serve with toasted bread on the side for dipping and sopping.