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Food Pairing: Craft beer is great!

Our Journey

When it comes to food, craft beer enthusiasts know their stuff.  Not only do they love great craft beer, they generally love food too!  This, naturally, has led to many a food pairing between brew and brat, but it goes further and has no limits!

Food pairing is not a complex task with craft beerFor example, have you ever tried a Russian Imperial Stout?  The bite at the end of these tasty brews is perfect for pairing with desserts like chocolate mousse.  Don’t believe us?  Try it!  The sweet and creamy texture of the mousse paired with the tangy bite of the stout balances out in a very interesting way.  Much like a red wine is often found paired with chocolate.

Another great pairing for this type of brew is chicken.  Not just any old chicken, though.  Chicken alfredo is a very creamy dish and the slight bitterness to the stout will offset the creamy effect of the meal quite nicely.  According to

According to Serious Eats, you could easily pair a brew like Samuel Smith’s Imperial Stout with Cheesecake, as they complement each other so very well.  Do you see a pattern here?  SS Imperial Stout is a very chocolatey and sweet type of stout, while cheesecake is creamy and smooth, yet also sweet.  Bite added to smooth plus sweet to go with sweet.  While this is not necessarily the only way to create a food pairing, it certainly has proven to work well historically.

What are some other examples of food pairing that work well?

Food pairing is not an exact science.  While one person may absolutely adore how a plate of grilled broccoli pairs with a light pilsner, another may prefer a more heady brew that contrasts with the dish.  Take broccoli rabe (rapini) for example.  This vegetable has a slightly bitter taste and is often found in Italian and Portuguese dishes.  As this vegetable is bitter, you could prepare it in a way that cuts the bitterness, but why?

Would it not be easier to pair it with a sweet glass of God Damn Pigeon Porter from Spiteful Brewing?  We realize the name itself seems to be a bit brash, but this brew is sweet and creamy, which would contrast the bitterness of broccoli rabe perfectly, leaving a divine combination for you to try instead of loading the dish up with seasoning or other additives.

If you’re into pairing bitter foods with bitter beers, then try pairing this dish with Stone Brewing Company’s Xocoveza, a delicious Mocha Stout.  While it still holds that little bit of bitter bite, it also has a variety of spices that really give it a kick and it could set off the rabe quite well.  Another great feature of this lovely craft beer is that it ages really well.  This makes it a great choice for a seasonal beer, as you can enjoy it far longer than other beers.

Overall, food pairing is becoming very popular.  Craft breweries are hiring food trucks, making their own food, and offering for their patrons to order in.  Taprooms across the world are encouraging enthusiasts to try new foods, pair their food with great craft beer, and learn to enjoy yet another avenue!  Food!  Hop over to your local craft brewery and see what they have in store for you.  You just might find some great advice on what to pair with your next meal!



Jan 17, 2017