You don’t have to be in formal wear to enjoy a nice drink pairing. In fact, flannel is preferred. The days of swishing glasses and commenting on the “oaky notes” all while you have your pinky high in the air are gone. The rising popularity of beer within the past decade has caused a paradigm shift in the food and drink world, and, honestly, we’re not mad about it. In fact, you might even see job listings for beer sommeliers (full sleeve of tattoos required). However, in general, beers seems to take on the same logic as you would with wine pairings: the lighter the beer, the lighter the dish should be, and the same goes with heavier beers. So, check out our food and beer pairing guide and play matchmaker at your next dinner party.
- Lagers are typically more carbonated than other beers, best served ice cold and tend to be crisp in flavor. Any lighter dish with seafood or chicken as well as spicy foods are perfect to pair with a refreshing lager. So, next time you have (maybe one too many) lagers, don’t forget to make a stop at your local late-night taco stand.
- Try your next lager with our: Baja Fish Tacos, Chili-Lime Fish Cakes, Blackened Chicken Caesar Salad
- It might be the most versatile food beer, with hops being able to cut through the oils in cheesy pizza and enough bubbles to cleanse the palate after a light goat cheese salad. When in doubt, grab a pils.
- Try your next pilsner with our: Fontina and Mushroom Grilled Cheese, Fig and Goat Cheese Flatbread, Brown Butter Shrimp and Grits
- Wheat Beers
- Most popularly marketing in the summer, these beers have a sharp wheat taste and are typically fruity, floral or bright in flavor. They pair well with citrusy dishes and can cut through the richness of foods like butter egg yolk and cream well. Brunch & beer anyone?
- Try your next wheat beer with our: Coconut Jasmine Rice Bowl, Salmon with Green Goddess Sauce, Caramelized Onion and Mushroom Quesadilla
- Stouts are typically smooth and creamy beers with strong malt and roasty grain flavors. They have a silky yet rich body, which pairs nicely with sweeter foods, because they can cut through the sweet flavors found in shellfish or vanilla, for example. They also pair nicely with winter hibernation.
- Try your next stout with our: Harvest-Stuffed Pork Tenderloin, Shrimp Scampi, Cod Amandine
- Porters are like stout’s moody cousin– typically dark, with malt-driven and has sweeter notes. You can often find porters with chocolate, coffee or honey flavors. Rich flavors in smoked or cured meats as well as heartier foods tend to pair well with this bold beer -Basically, anything a viking would have eaten.
- Try your next porter with: Prosciutto and Shaved Brussels Pizza, Baked Italian Sausage Farfalle, Filet Mignon with Prosciutto-Wrapped Asparagus
Now that golden ales and dark stouts have been poured into the general consumer’s consciousness, we are now cognizant of which $12 pilsner pairs best with our $5 wings. Don’t get us wrong, wine has a time and a place (basically anytime and anyplace), but beer is giving us yet another reason to drink and eat in tandem. What’s so wrong with that? Cheers!