Starting out with beer and food pairing can be daunting. After all, most readers of Quench will be more familiar with pairing wine. Whether you’re a novice or you’ve reached the point where selecting a bottle to go with your meal is second nature, it’s important to note some differences between the beverages and establish some ground rules in order to get the best possible results.
Wine tends to be an expression of the terroir of a vineyard, but beer is less straightforward in the way it converts ingredients into flavour. In a substantial way, beer is a lot more like the dish you’re cooking. You might be working with a recipe, but if you’re a talented home cook, you’re probably choosing ingredients for a specific purpose. Just like your meal, beer is ingredient and recipe driven; it’s also a technological product. Over centuries, as innovations in malting, hop breeding and yeast cultivating have come about, the variety of beer available has become more diverse. Even so, there are still some things that all beers have in common.