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Pairing beer with food

One of the advantages of beer is the variety in flavors and aromas, largely thanks to the thousands of craft brewers. Not only can you quench your thirst with hundreds of flavors, but it means you can pair your beer with more food choices. When complementing and contrasting the flavors correctly, you can highlight different aspects of the drink and dish. The objective of pairing beer and food is to bring out each flavor. When you consider the different types of food and beer available, you will realize that there are infinite combinations. Going through them all can be time-consuming and expensive, not to mention the combinations you’ll get wrong.

But there are some fundamental principles of pairing beer and food that you can use. The principles will let you choose combinations smarter and with confidence. 

Compliment and contrast

A simple way to pair beer and food is to match both flavors. For example, pair light beers with food that has light or delicate flavors, like fish or salad. Or pair heavy, rich beers such as a stout with rich, boldly flavored food.

Another way to pair beer and food is to choose beer and food with similar flavors but are not in the same flavor family.

A riskier alternative and more advanced is pairing two flavors that are opposites of each other. Contrasting flavors is difficult, but it has a huge payoff when it works. For example, you can pair chocolatey stouts with briny oysters or sweet wheat beer with spicy Thai food.

Other ways of pairing beer with food

For desserts with chocolate, coffee, or roasted flavors, you can pair them with beer with a similar flavor. For example, a stout.

You can match hearty, savory food with robust, heavy beers that add to the rich flavors of the dish.

For lighter dishes infused with citrus, you can pair them with clean, crisp beers like American lagers.

You can have beer or food as a palate cleanser. For example, oily foods like nuts or fries can cut through the bitterness of an IPA. Similarly, a cold light beer cleanses your palate of the heat of Korean fried chicken.

Stormhouse Brewing has craft beers from across the state along with its own. It’s the only brewer with a restaurant with a gastro-pub menu that pairs with its beers. Come in and enjoy the food and drink flavors as you’ve never had them before.

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