Beer and Cheese Matching

by | Jul 3, 2014 | Article

When it comes to all the foods that beer matches well with there are few that match with beer better than cheese.

In the past I used to get funny looks when I talked about cheese and beer matching as it was thought that cheese and wine ruled the roost. However, when you look at the history of food and drink you realise that it is wine that is the unusual partner to cheese.

Cheese and beer would have traditionally been made by the same person – usually the farmwife – on the farm. Cheese was a way of preserving milk for long periods of time and beer was a way of making water safe to drink and providing a nourishing drink throughout the year. The key ingredient in beer is a cultivated grass which is barley and grass is essential to the cows’ diet, you’ll often see a cow in a field, but almost never in a vineyard.

There are these similarities and links between cheese and beer, but it really comes down to the matches to prove who the real bed fellows are. As with any food and drink matches you can match like with like, or cut and contrast. Big flavour cheeses can go with big beers, or we can use contrasting beers to bring the best out of cheese. What can’t be allowed happen is to have a big cheese over powering a delicate beer or visa versa.

Once you start following these rules you can build up a remarkable repertoire of pairings. At the mild end of things such as soft goats cheese, try German style wheat beers or a honey beer. A mild creamy cheese with a sweet stout is incredible – coffee and cream combination. A medium cheddar paired with a English bitter is a classic. Where things get really exciting is with stronger flavoured cheeses: mature cheddar, parmesan, Stilton, Roquefort, the list goes on. These stronger cheeses really need big flavoured beers to compliment them. A traditional strength IPA or and sweetish export stout matched with a Stilton are amazing combinations. The malt sweetness in beer matches and intensifies the sweetness in cheese, whilst the hop bitterness and carbonation refreshes your pallet. It just makes you want to go back for more.

To discover more about our beer and food matching packages or to have a chat through our options at The House of Boda

 

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