Just like fine wines, beer does pair well with different types of food. It’s always handy to know what pairs well with your glass of craft brew. For Indian food, you can’t go wrong with a Lager.
Most often, your brewpub menu will contain suggested pairings. If this is missing, you can always ask your waiter for help and if that doesn’t work, ask to speak to the brewmaster.
Follow the 3 C’s first.
Complement – Choose a Beer with a similar flavor profile to the dish.
Contrast – Contrasting flavors can work really well. For example using a Hefeweizen’s sweetness to balance the heat from a spicy dish.
Cleanse – High carbonation and high gravity (ABV) help cleanse your palate.
Then use this rough guide next to help simplify the choice process.
Hop Forward Beers – Pair with: Burgers; Buffalo wings; Asian, Mexican, Spicy Dishes,; Fried Food; Pizzas & Steaks (Beef).
Try not to pair dishes that are overly spicy, as hops tend to bring out heat.
Brown Ales/Amber/Reds – These pair very well with nutty and roasted dishes and are particularly good at pairing with Burgers, Steaks and grilled/smoked food.
Cheese: Cheddar, Parmesan, or Romano cheeses.
Strong Lagers – Pair with: Moderately Spicy Dishes, Beef; Sausage & Seared Foods.
Cheese: Gruyère, Emmental, and Swiss cheeses;
LAGER & PILSNER
Pair with – Salads, Shellfish; Light Seafood; Sushi; Grilled Pork and Chicken; Not-too-heavy Pasta dishes (without cream or meat sauces); Southeast Asian, Latin & Mexican food;
Cheese: Cheddar; Muenster, Havarti, and Monterey Jack cheeses
Pair with: Smoked Foods; Barbecue; Sausage; Rich Stews; Meats; Bacon; Beer Chili & Braised Dishes.
Pair with: Roasted foods; Smoked foods; Barbecued/Grilled foods; Salty Foods; Oysters; Rich Stews; Braised Dishes; Chocolate; Desserts (ideally the beer is sweeter than the dish).
WHEAT BEER/ HEFEWEIZEN/WIT:
Pair with: Light Soups and Salads; Vegetarian Dishes; Sushi; ; Sweet and Fruity Asian Dishes; Citrus-Flavored Dishes, including Dessert and Salad dressings.
Cheese: Gruyère cheese and Feta/goat cheese
This handy infographic below has some great pairings. Please click on the image for a better view.
Beer & Chocolate
Follow this handy guide and read the detailed post about a Beer & Chocolate pairing session held at Arbor Brewing Company Bangalore.
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