The Ultimate Craft Beer and Food Pairing Guide

In Articles by Leonard Tan

Pairing food with craft beer will lead you on an exciting road of discovery. With the large diversity of beer and fooBeer-burger-Amber-Nectard, you can find winning combination at every corner. Wine is universally more common when people think of pairing drink with their food. However, there are some food which surprisingly is much suited for beer pairing than wine. There are much more options and flavor varieties available when it comes to beer. It offers much more complicated and interesting tasting experience with an endless selections of taste options.

There aren’t any rules when pairing food- it’s basically personal choice. However, if you follow some guidelines and use proven combinations can lift the flavors and cleanse the palate for the next bite.
Certainly everyone knowns that beer pairs well with sausages, hamburgers and pizza, but there is more pairings based on where than why. The article walks through some principles to delve further into why beer actually pairs well with many foods based on flavor profile.

Principle #1
Match craft beer with food having similar intensity
Craft beer offers numerous choices in style and flavor and you should search for a paring that neither overcome food nor beer. For instance, American, Belgian and German wheat beer styles offer a lighter feel on the palate along with subtle amount of carbonation and little to no bitterness. This makes it perfect pairing for delicate sea foods, shellfish, salads and omelets. Further, it can be spiced with coriander or orange peel for zingy taste.

Principle #2
Search for similarities in flavor profile
American Amber Ale and English Brown Ales get the required color by roasting malted barley. In most of the cases this roasting produces caramel, nutty, and bread-like flavors. Choose foods that have some caramelization on the exterior pairing. Classically, roast chicken is a perfect pair for American Amber Ales. Also, Indian Pale Ales have a forward bitterness and spiciness which are perfect accompaniment for spicy foods like Indian curries and Mexican dishes.

Principle #3
Pair regional dishes with regional beers
The obvious choices for English Bitters and Brown Ales are fish and chips, Belgian golden ales with mussels and frites and German Bocks. You can also try American Ales with hamburgers and barbeque dishes.

Principle #4
Texture, temperature and timings
Bubbles cut through fried and fatty foods, thereby it is better to choose more carbonization while eating richer foods. Pizzas are greasy and require something that will stand up and cut through the fatty cheese but not overwhelm the dish. Stouts and porters are too heavy! Moreover, beer tastes syrupy when it is served warm between 40°F and 50°F. And lastly time is everything, ensure that you start with a light beer and course by course work your way toward darker beers.

Pairing food and beer is fun! Moreover multitude complex flavors in beer and hundreds of choices and combinations makes it bit difficult to choose the best, but if you are inventive and adventuresome you will definitely pave your own path.  Hopefully, this guide has helped you to discover the explosive and amazing world of beer with food pairings to unlock best possible zests in your mouth.