Did You Know That Beer and Cheese Is the New Wine and Cheese?
Happy International Beer Day!
Cheese trays are pretty much synonymous with social gatherings. At every office party, family gathering and girls’ night, you can expect to find a selection of cheddars and goudas perched on a wooden plank. And usually, there’s a glass of merlot or chardonnay nearby to pair with each cheesy bite.
But we’re here to tell you about cheese’s superior match: beer. As a carbonated beverage, beer helps lift the fat from cheese off your tongue and cleanse the palate for your next bite. Plus it’s affordable and incredibly versatile. Enlisting the expertise of Labatt Brewery’s Head of Education, Michelle Tham, and Cheese Boutique’s Maitre fromager, Afrim Pristine, we put together the best beer and cheese pairings to get you ready for entertaining.
When it comes to beer and cheese, some relationships are tastier than others. Before we hand over actual pairings, we’ve put together a few basic guidelines to help guide your choices:
1. Align intensity
Make sure that bold cheeses are paired with bold beers, and delicate cheeses with delicate beers. A misalignment in intensity will result in either the cheese or beer dominating the palate, at the expense of the other. But if the intensities are aligned, the flavours and characteristics in both the beer and cheese will have the opportunity to shine.
2. Bridge flavours
Look for a flavour that is present in both the cheese and the beer…they need to have something in common to bond over! Look for flavour characteristics in beer that can also describe cheese. Think peppery, woody, grassy, earthy, floral, herbaceous, nutty, smoky, tart, funky, fruity, toffee, caramel, and spicy.
3. Cut tastes and textures
For a dynamic pairing, you need an element of contrast. This is why beer and cheese are a match made in heaven. The carbonation in beer naturally cuts through the richness and creaminess in cheese’s texture. Beer also can have bitterness, sweetness or acidity that can cut through the salt and fat of cheese.
4. Experiment and have fun
These are just general guidelines, but don’t let them hold you back from discovering magical and unexpected pairings by tasting and experimenting with different styles and varieties of beer and cheese.