Food pairing is an onward looking trend that has gradually earned popularity across the globe – be it amateurs or experts, pairing your food with the perfect drink is a fancy go-to dining etiquette. While the conventional ideas of food pairing with wine and gin have been doing the rounds, turns out that beer is a more flexible food pairing option than any other beverage. It’s so much easier to pair beer with foods as there are so many different variations in flavor, aroma, appearance and mouthfeel. It has so much to offer.
As dining out at restaurants have now shifted majorly to house parties, it is the perfect time to consider tailoring your beer inventory to the food menu. Whether you are enjoying your fiery hot chicken curry, or your favorite Hyderabadi biryani or sizzling paneer tikka, pairing it with the right beer can elevate your experience.
But before you do, follow the ‘3C’ rule to pair your favorite beer:
There are several key elements such as sweetness, bitterness, acidity, fruitiness, richness etc that one needs to consider when looking at how beer can complement food.
Strike a ‘contrasting’ deal: It is always a good idea to balance the equation
An ideal pairing by contrast is when you chose a beer or food with one strong, dominant flavor. This will make your hero dish shine without its taste being overpowered. Such contrasts can be using beer and difference foods to balance bitterness & sweetness, acidity & sweetness or crispness & richness.
Beer ‘compliments’ the flavors: You can't go wrong with pairing things that are alike
India, as we all know, is rich on spices and flavours and it will be incomplete if one does not indulge into the versatility of it. Complementing flavors of your dish with beer is one of the simplest ways to make a successful food and beer pairing. Beer and food that shares common flavors & characteristic will support each other.
‘Cleanse’ to rinse and reset: Cutting it through the flavors
While they enhance and amplify the flavours, beers also act as a palate cleanser. It has the unique ability to reset the palate through bitterness, alcohol and carbon dioxide. This type of beer pairing is ideal for a food menu that has a strong or overpowering flavor like spicy Indian food or fatty fried food. This pairing also works in the opposite way, and you can use fatty foods, such as french fries or nuts, to cut through the bitterness.
Here are few suggestions that you can try with beer:
A glass of light lager is crisp, smooth and carbonated which goes well with your BBQ chicken or fish and chips or even thai curry
A combination of the Indian pale ale with a classic burger, chicken curry, biryani and even deserts such as Apple pie
A pilsner paired with your favourite sandwiches, pizzas and even salad
A creamy cheesy risotto with cider will bring alive the flavours
Lastly, try pairing porter with rich chocolate-based deserts to wrap up the day
While Beer is one of the milder alcohol beverages available today, don’t forget moderation is the key to good health. The fact that alcohol content in beer varies anywhere between 3.5% to 8% which is lower than hard spirits and even wine, makes it even a perfect food partner.