Golden rules for combining beer with food
Author: Erik Verdonck / Published: 2013-07-12 15:00:18 +0200 / Last Updated: over 4 years ago
The golden rules for combining beer with food are just the same as those used when matching a menu with wine. Time for a brief introduction we thought.
The two archetypal types of dishes: fish, which is fresh and sour, and meat, with its penetrating and mild characteristics, call for two basic beer types: pils and wheat beer for fresh-sour dishes and a dark abbey beer for penetrating-mild dishes.
For a marriage to be successful, the right type of dish must be served with a beer from the appropriate basic beer group: fish dishes and the like with fresh, sour beers, casseroles and similar dishes with mild, dark beers.
Comprimising & Happy Marriages
Pils and blonde abbey beers complement both fish and meat and sometimes compromises will have to be made. Of course, the fresh taste of mussels will go down better with wheat beer than with pils, but if there is no wheat beer available, pils will do very well.
Happy marriages are those in which each party gets something out of the relationship, where the food is improved by the accompanying beer and vice versa.
A dark abbey beer served with mussels is a complete waste of time, as is serving a wheat beer with roast meat.
The basic beer group to accompany fish dishes includes pils(ener), wheat beer, blonde abbey beer or triple and a href="https://belgium.beertourism.com/blog/new-frank-boon-brewing-hall-officially-opened">Gueuze in order of increasing complexity of flavour.
Pils is the least complex in the list but some triples are highly complex.
So when it comes to finding the right beer to accompany fish dishes, ranging for example from mussels and fries to turbot in a cream sauce, care should be taken to ensure that the complexity of the dish matches that of the beer.
A complex taste cannot be fully appreciated by putting it together with a simple flavour. Complex dishes typically have a variety of ingredients, a complicated method of preparation and require prolonged cooking.
However, there are no automatic pairings. Mussels with fries, in which the fattiness of the fries to some extent masks the finesse of the mussel flavour on the palate, demands lager.
The same mussels served with brown bread, which helps enhance the flavour of the mussels, goes down much better with wheat beer. With turbot in a cream sauce, a strong blond beer is a better choice, but fish dishes with a more pronounced flavour - grilled sardines for example - are best served with a stronger wheat beer.
Recent Blog Posts
BRUSSELS/MONS - We’ve made our way down to the historic city of Mons (Bergen) for the eighth edition of the international Brussels Beer Challenge. A 90-strong jury is busy tasting; there are four morn ... [ read more ]
BRUGES - This city draws you back in time to the heydays of the Burgundian era. After years of renovation works the Gruuthusemuseum has re-opened its doors. This former city ... [ read more ]
ANTWERP - Brewers from 59 different countries flocked to attend the Brewers of Europe Forum 2019 in the prestigious Queen Elizabeth Hall, right next to the renowned Antwerp Central Station building. ... [ read more ]
ERTVELDE - To track down a brewer within his own domain is a high-ranking form of sports, or that’s the impression I get. After a bit of practice I spot Jef Versele, CEO of the Van Steenberge brewery, ... [ read more ]
You must be logged in to leave a comment
ANTWERP - Today, we are meeting up for a second tasting session in this beer and food pairing series at ‘t Zilte restaurant, the proud owner of two Michelin stars, perched high above the Flemish city of Antwerp. ... [ more ]
ELLEZELLES - As many as 34 years ago Jean-Baptiste Thomaes, at the ripe young age of 22, set up the prestigious establishment of Le Château du Mylord in Ellezelles, a village close to Ronse and Oudenaarde. ... [ more ]
ELLEZELLES - Put several brewers and chefs around the same table, get them to taste a few beers and soon you will have a heated discussion! Jean-Baptiste and Christophe Thomaes of Le Château du ... [ more ]
In 2003 the Roman brewery – in business since 1545 and a proud member of the Belgian Family Brewers association – relaunched its popular 'Roman Oudenaards bruin' as 'Adriaen Brouwe... [ more ]
Beer Tourism Newsletter Signup
Enter your name and email address on the right and click "SignUp" to join.