*Originally written by Suzanne Vargas.
The food pairings are endless!!
Typically, people think of wine when talking about food pairings but what people don’t realize is that beer is a far superior when pairing with really any food. Thats right I said it- ANY food. I dare you to try to prove me wrong.
There are three primary interactions you should consider when pairing beer and food. They are complement, contrast, and cleanse.
The first, COMPLEMENT is the most obvious, where you choose a beer with a similar flavor profiles to that of the dish. An example of this would be a sweet beer with dessert. Such as my Mocha death cream cake topped with mocha cream cheese frosting paired wonderfully with a big old mug of Mocha Death.
The second, CONTRAST, is the opposite of complement. Here you choose a beer with flavors that contrast against the flavors in the dish and in turn, actually heighten both. A classic example of this would be an Imperial IPA paired with a spicy rich dish such as Pad Thai. Alcohol’s solvent nature actually works to “open” the pores on your tongue which will intensify the heat of the dish.
The third interaction, CLEANSE, is perhaps the easiest to achieve. The carbonation of beer cuts through rich foods cleanses your tongue and prepares it for the next bite. This is why especially bubbly beers are popular with rich or fatty dishes.
If this post has inspired you to go home and cook with beer (which I hope it has) go ahead and follow this link for more tips to help you pair like a pro.
Or just head home and crack open a growler- drinking while cooking counts too. 🙂
And below, a picture of what we all need for those upcoming summer BBQs.