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Other than Brewing => All Things Food => Topic started by: chargerssb on March 02, 2011, 04:46:02 AM

Title: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: chargerssb on March 02, 2011, 04:46:02 AM
Hi everyone,

I am going to be throwing a beer vs. wine party in May for my 30th b-day (know a lot of wine snobs and want to show them how beer too can pair with food just as well as wine).  So far the idea is having a Thai food themed menu, appetizer, first course, entrée, and a dessert.  The appetizer is still up in the air. For the first course we are having Tom Ka Gai Soup.  The entrée is going to be chicken panang curry with rice.  The dessert is going to cheesecake with a mango puree sauce.  

I am in the process of doing research on beers to pair with each course and wanted to get some tips as to what might work.  I am new to homebrewing and have really been into craft beers the last couple of years.  What styles and or specific beers might go best with each course.  I really want to get these pairings right to maybe convert some of these "wine snobs"; or at least plant the seed that beer is not just that yellow fizzy stuff.  Thanks everyone.  Cheers.
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: weazletoe on March 02, 2011, 05:11:03 AM
I have nothing to add except that I like your ideas. I find them fresh, and exciting. I would like to subscribe to your newsletter.


     Great idea dude!
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: MrNate on March 02, 2011, 05:59:19 AM
In general I feel that Belgians work well for converting wine snobs. They see it has a cork and they're all like, ooh, that's fancy! And then I'm all like, well get ready to have your mind blown, cuz this is beer!

Then I bang out Stairway on air guitar, with the volume on the air amps cranked to 11.

After I smash the air guitar on the air stage, I push my hair back, look 'em dead in the eye, and say, Yeah, that just happened.
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: phillamb168 on March 02, 2011, 07:28:26 AM
If you have time you should check out this book: http://www.amazon.com/Brewmasters-Table-Discovering-Pleasures-Real/dp/006000570X

It's from Garret Oliver, the brewmaster at Brooklyn Brewery.

Your thai sounds like a good bet - I LOVE tom kha. Complex flavors go well with complex beers. I'd do summer rolls for the appetizer - as opposed to spring rolls, summer rolls are not fried and are bigger than spring rolls. Typically you put mung bean sprouts, mint, shrimp and chopped peanuts as a filler. Sauce is (IIRC) nam pla cut with something, I don't remember if it's water or what.

My recommendation would be to not go with 100% belgian. Use the same guidelines for beer pairings as you would use for wine pairings. If you go with summer rolls for the appetizer, have something crisp and refreshing like a Kolsch. For Tom Ka, which can be a bit heavy feeling with the coconut milk, I'd go with a high-gravity citrusy Belgian. The citrusy/alcohol notes will balance nicely with the creaminess/butteriness of the soup. With your curry, it can go either way. SIngha is the 'traditional' accompaniment for mains with thai (at least in my mind) but I think you could go for a double / Imperial IPA. Sam Adams also does an Imperial White that might work nicely. Dessert, for that cheesecake, I dunno about you but I love Goose Island Bourbon County stout for something like that. The bourbon notes would pair well if it's a vanilla cheesecake, and provide a bitter balance to the sweetness of the mango.

All beer should be served to wine snobs with a humble pie pairing, of course ;-)
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: phillamb168 on March 02, 2011, 07:31:19 AM
Oh, and because 1. 3/4 of these are high-gravity and 2. your friends are wine snobs, you should serve these in wine glasses with a typical wine pour (give it room to breathe, don't fill to the top). Also if you go with the imperial white, make sure you serve it cold cold cold.

One more suggestion for dessert would be St Peter's Honey Porter. The aroma on that beer is just ridiculous.
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: punatic on March 02, 2011, 07:32:31 AM
Three words:
Green papaya salad...
(Thai ambrosia)
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: euge on March 02, 2011, 07:36:10 AM
Three words:
Green papaya salad...
(Thai ambrosia)

Think they can handle the heat? If so I'd serve it with some Czech Pilsner.
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: punatic on March 02, 2011, 07:44:11 AM
Three words:
Green papaya salad...
(Thai ambrosia)

Think they can handle the heat? If so I'd serve it with some Czech Pilsner.

Anything Thai can be hot.  Green papaya salad isn't necessarily so though.  I eat GPSs several times a week.  Very tasty (and keeps you regular).  Of course it helps that I grow my own papayas.

Abita Turbodog is famous for being a heat-beater.
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: weiht on March 02, 2011, 08:02:00 AM
I couldn't think of a better cuisine than what you are doing. In fact i just had thai food over the weekend with some amazing beers and the combination was just amazing. I love the way beer interacts with the spices, and i have always thought that asian food like indian and thai are excellent pairings with beer.

As much as im more of an ale person, spicy asian food and hot weather makes me appreciate the need for a good lager as well. And nothing better to finish the night with a nice desert and a porter :)
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: jeffy on March 02, 2011, 12:29:00 PM
At a seminar on food pairing at last year's NHC they paired cheesecake with IPA and it worked really well.  Very complementary.
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: denny on March 02, 2011, 04:44:19 PM
I am in the process of doing research on beers to pair with each course and wanted to get some tips as to what might work.

Our next Ask the Experts is Sean Paxton, the Homebrew Chef.  The perfect guy to ask about food and beer pairing!  Questions should be open in a week or so.
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: nicneufeld on March 02, 2011, 05:35:14 PM
Great idea!  Although in fairness to the wine partisans, the choice of Thai food is hardly level...Thai food just goes with beer.  It's a bit like having an Italian dinner and squaring off rich red Italian wines against beer.   ;D

For your dessert I'd say barleywine, preferably English style.  Something huge and special.  American styles might be a bit too hoppy, but a good British style barleywine would be a nice foil to cheesecake I think.

Since panang tends to be moderately milder than other Thai curries, I would choose something other than thirst quenching pils or weizen for that time...maybe an IPA, or bitter, or even perhaps porter.  Definitely have a lighter beer in there at somepoint though!

And I second the notion of something corked and Belgian purely for the visual appeal.  How about a cold, highly carbonated tripel served in champagne flutes for the appetizer?  Freak em out with that!  :D
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: morticaixavier on March 02, 2011, 05:47:19 PM
Might want to try to work a lambic in there somewhere. The russian river Beatification is really amazing in place of champagne. For desert I like somkething bitter and roasty to cut the sweetness of the cheesecake, RIS perhaps. I like wheat beers with thai food alot. a nice lemony hefe would highlight the lemongrass in thai. I LOVE saison with spicy thai also.
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: nicneufeld on March 02, 2011, 07:33:31 PM
Oooh, excellent, maybe saison instead of a tripel for that first quasi-champagne beer.  Lambics I'm less a fan of personally, but it sounds interesting!

But saison sounds like a better plan than tripel, not least because your guests legs won't turn to rubber after the first course...
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: morticaixavier on March 02, 2011, 07:52:34 PM
Oooh, excellent, maybe saison instead of a tripel for that first quasi-champagne beer.  Lambics I'm less a fan of personally, but it sounds interesting!

But saison sounds like a better plan than tripel, not least because your guests legs won't turn to rubber after the first course...

To each there own but what is it about lambics that turn you off? Have you had the russion river beatification? I do not like the sweet fruity lindemanns style of lambic at all but a straight (non-fruit) lambic is a wonderful thing.
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: nicneufeld on March 02, 2011, 08:13:02 PM
To each there own but what is it about lambics that turn you off? Have you had the russion river beatification? I do not like the sweet fruity lindemanns style of lambic at all but a straight (non-fruit) lambic is a wonderful thing.

Haven't tried enough yet, I think...the one that soured me (rimshot!) was Hanssens Oude Kriek.  Came to me in a flash what all these reviews talking about "barnyard funk and horseblanket" were referring to.  The three things I remember from it were acetone, vinegar, and manure.  The Lindemans ones I have no objection to, but I hardly classify them as beer.  More a very very traditional and upscale malt based wine cooler.  So...if I ever do see the Russian River one, I'll give the genre a second shot!  Never had gueuze, either.
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: morticaixavier on March 02, 2011, 08:56:08 PM
To each there own but what is it about lambics that turn you off? Have you had the russion river beatification? I do not like the sweet fruity lindemanns style of lambic at all but a straight (non-fruit) lambic is a wonderful thing.

Haven't tried enough yet, I think...the one that soured me (rimshot!) was Hanssens Oude Kriek.  Came to me in a flash what all these reviews talking about "barnyard funk and horseblanket" were referring to.  The three things I remember from it were acetone, vinegar, and manure.  The Lindemans ones I have no objection to, but I hardly classify them as beer.  More a very very traditional and upscale malt based wine cooler.  So...if I ever do see the Russian River one, I'll give the genre a second shot!  Never had gueuze, either.

That does sound unpleasant. I am sure it's a hit and miss thing. It's a wide style.
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: bluesman on March 03, 2011, 01:50:05 AM
I am in the process of doing research on beers to pair with each course and wanted to get some tips as to what might work.

Our next Ask the Experts is Sean Paxton, the Homebrew Chef.  The perfect guy to ask about food and beer pairing!  Questions should be open in a week or so.

+1

...and if you go to the CraftBeer.com website you'll find beer and food pairings with alot of recipes. Check it out.

http://www.craftbeer.com/pages/beer-and-food/features
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: chargerssb on March 03, 2011, 03:16:35 AM
Thanks for all the replies.  Many good ideas on where to start.  I will definitely post a question for Sean Paxton.  I didn't even think about pairing the wines yet with Thai food; I could see how that might be difficult, especially since I don't know a ton about wine.  Summer rolls sound delicious.  We were also thinking of maybe some sort of crab won tons (not necessarily Thai, but they are delicious).  I have ready Randy Mosher's Tasting Beer and am going to thumb through that again for some tips and check out the Craft Beer site.  I still have quite some time before a final menu decision needs to be made.  So we'll see.  Just need to keep researching.  I suppose I should think more about the wine side of it too to be fair.   
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: Hokerer on March 03, 2011, 03:36:08 AM
If you're interested in wine pairing in addition to your beer pairing, Sam Calig.... (whatever, the Dogfish Head dude) and a lady wine expert have a book out called He Said Beer, She Said Wine.  Supposed to be a pretty good (and humorous) take on both beer and wine pairings with food.  Here...

http://www.amazon.com/Said-Beer-She-Wine-Impassioned/dp/0756654491/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1299123150&sr=1-1 (http://www.amazon.com/Said-Beer-She-Wine-Impassioned/dp/0756654491/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1299123150&sr=1-1)
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: punatic on March 03, 2011, 06:25:19 AM
My friend Ron Raike brews for Shipyard in Winter Park, FL (another homebrewer gone pro story).  They posted this on Facebook:

Beer vs Wine Dinner (http://www.facebook.com/#!/event.php?eid=194848103870252)
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: phillamb168 on March 03, 2011, 09:14:03 AM
If you're interested in wine pairing in addition to your beer pairing, Sam Calig.... (whatever, the Dogfish Head dude) and a lady wine expert have a book out called He Said Beer, She Said Wine.  Supposed to be a pretty good (and humorous) take on both beer and wine pairings with food.  Here...

http://www.amazon.com/Said-Beer-She-Wine-Impassioned/dp/0756654491/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1299123150&sr=1-1 (http://www.amazon.com/Said-Beer-She-Wine-Impassioned/dp/0756654491/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1299123150&sr=1-1)


Cheers for the book link; ordered. Looks neat!
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: Hokerer on March 03, 2011, 02:36:41 PM
Cheers for the book link; ordered. Looks neat!

Cool.  Let us know what you think.  I'd be curious to hear as I bought that book for my brother-in-law, who's into wine as well as craft beer, for Christmas but I haven't heard anything from him about what he thought.
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: euge on March 03, 2011, 07:13:13 PM
Oooh, excellent, maybe saison instead of a tripel for that first quasi-champagne beer.  Lambics I'm less a fan of personally, but it sounds interesting!

But saison sounds like a better plan than tripel, not least because your guests legs won't turn to rubber after the first course...

The Sam Adams Infinium would slot into this role quite nicely. I see it pairing well with most food too.

As far as lambics I prefer the sweet cheap ones like Lindemans. I don't go for carbonated vinegar... And I don't see the uninitiated caring overmuch for a Gueuze either.
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: chargerssb on March 05, 2011, 06:09:29 PM
Alright, so after doing some more research on the wine side, I determined that Thai food might not work the best.  It would have to be mostly to all white wines and we don't want to do that.  We changed up the menu to be more of a Japanese Steakhouse theme.  The menu is now:

Appetizer - Grilled Garden Sushi Rolls (cucumber, asparagus, avocado, etc.)
First Course - Miso Soup
Main Course - Flank Steak (marinated somehow, but haven't determined yet), scallops, and a salad w/ginger dressing
Dessert - Ginger/Pear Cake

I think this menu might make it easier to pair up both the wines and the beer.  What do you think?
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: theoman on March 09, 2011, 10:59:05 AM
Great idea!  Although in fairness to the wine partisans, the choice of Thai food is hardly level...Thai food just goes with beer.  It's a bit like having an Italian dinner and squaring off rich red Italian wines against beer.   ;D

I disagree with that statement. Well, sort of. Thai food can work with red wine and Italian food and beer can be excellent. I love a big brown beer, like Gouden Carolus with just about anything with red sauce. I've done a lobster ravioli paired with Malheur Biere Brut that was freakin' divine.
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: phillamb168 on March 09, 2011, 11:14:33 AM
Great idea!  Although in fairness to the wine partisans, the choice of Thai food is hardly level...Thai food just goes with beer.  It's a bit like having an Italian dinner and squaring off rich red Italian wines against beer.   ;D

I disagree with that statement. Well, sort of. Thai food can work with red wine and Italian food and beer can be excellent. I love a big brown beer, like Gouden Carolus with just about anything with red sauce. I've done a lobster ravioli paired with Malheur Biere Brut that was freakin' divine.

So when are you having us over for dinner?
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: bluesman on March 09, 2011, 12:26:08 PM
Great idea!  Although in fairness to the wine partisans, the choice of Thai food is hardly level...Thai food just goes with beer.  It's a bit like having an Italian dinner and squaring off rich red Italian wines against beer.   ;D

I disagree with that statement. Well, sort of. Thai food can work with red wine and Italian food and beer can be excellent. I love a big brown beer, like Gouden Carolus with just about anything with red sauce. I've done a lobster ravioli paired with Malheur Biere Brut that was freakin' divine.

So when are you having us over for dinner?

Yes and I'll bring the homebrew.  ;)
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: theoman on March 09, 2011, 12:37:40 PM
So when are you having us over for dinner?

When can ya come?
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: phillamb168 on March 09, 2011, 01:03:32 PM
So when are you having us over for dinner?

When can ya come?

Ah, yeah, that's the trouble, 3 hours' drive to Brussels + teething baby... ;-) But you can come here, I'll do something large and meaty on the smoker
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: phillamb168 on March 09, 2011, 01:05:11 PM
So when are you having us over for dinner?

When can ya come?

Oh and bring Brasserie de la Seine. That stuff is great. Have you tried their "Brussels People's Ale?"
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: theoman on March 09, 2011, 06:52:29 PM
So when are you having us over for dinner?

When can ya come?

Oh and bring Brasserie de la Seine. That stuff is great. Have you tried their "Brussels People's Ale?"

You mean Taras Boulba? Yeah, I have a nearly empty case of it in the garage. Great beer from a great brewer. All their beers are good.

Thanks for the invite. I'm sure we'll see you one of these days before too long, especially since my wife's brother lives in Paris as well. I'm just not so sure about the big meat in the smoker (hm, someone is going to have fun with that line), since, besides the occasional fish/seafood, I haven't eaten meat in around 16 years.
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: elauren on March 19, 2011, 02:24:32 AM
Be sure to cash in on the cheese.  I would almost do not care about getting the pairings right between the drinks as long as you have the right partner for your drinks.  I do not know the specifics but you should have the cheese that would go well with your wine.  If you are looking for the beer, try something with different tastes.  I like the ones with ginseng and some herbs of some sort.
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: theoman on March 27, 2011, 07:43:19 PM

Oh and bring Brasserie de la Seine. That stuff is great. Have you tried their "Brussels People's Ale?"

I've been meaning to correct myself on this. Of course you meant Zinnebir. I knew that. And yeah, also damn good.
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: beveragebob on March 31, 2011, 08:49:39 AM
Perhaps a Kriek or Peche from Lindemans in Champagne flutes at the beginning to "break the ice"? SWMBO and I have hosted beer and food pairing dinners at our abode before and I've tried to pair the food with the beers that go from light to dark and it seemed to work against palate fatigue for ourselves and our guests. You'll have to work your own logistics with the food from that standpoint. Good Luck and have fun!
Title: Re: Beer vs. Wine Party
Post by: phillamb168 on March 31, 2011, 09:27:05 AM
So when are you having us over for dinner?

When can ya come?

Oh and bring Brasserie de la Seine. That stuff is great. Have you tried their "Brussels People's Ale?"

You mean Taras Boulba? Yeah, I have a nearly empty case of it in the garage. Great beer from a great brewer. All their beers are good.

Thanks for the invite. I'm sure we'll see you one of these days before too long, especially since my wife's brother lives in Paris as well. I'm just not so sure about the big meat in the smoker (hm, someone is going to have fun with that line), since, besides the occasional fish/seafood, I haven't eaten meat in around 16 years.

That's alright, I can do smoked yams. Have you ever had smoked fufu? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fufu NOM NOM. http://norcalsmkr.blogspot.com/2010/11/smokey-caramelized-sweet-potatoes.html

I can also do grilled calamari if that's your thing. I love that stuff, with some peppers, onions, garlic, a bit of olive oil...