I’m of the opinion that food and beer pairing is extremely subjective, despite there being many rules of thumb. And granted, these rules of thumb might be good starting points (BeerAdvocate, not surprisingly, has a great article), but experimenting is definitely the way to go.
With that said, and in spirit of our little contest, here are some simple local pairings I enjoy. And so should you!
Cured meats from Sante and Laughing Dog’s Dogfather Stout: The big flavors of Sante’s meats goes nicely with the creamy bold flavors and sweet chocolaty goodness of the Dogfather.
Steak from Rocky Ridge and Northern Lights Amber: A steak, like say a beef tenderloin, often goes well with a good porter, but I personally prefer something just a bit lighter. Northern Lights Amber has enough flavor to pair with beef without overwhelming it.
AC LaRocca Garlic Chicken Parmesan Pizza and Golden Hills’ Clem’s Gold: Granted, you might have to get a growler of Golden Hills, as I’ve yet to see it on bottle, but Clem’s Gold is a nice session lager to swallow down a thin crust pizza with.
Mizuna’s flourless chocolate cake and Coeur d’Alene Brewing Co.’s Vanilla Bourbon Stout: Get the cake to go, and indulge in what will definitely put you into an oh so nice and sweet coma. This is definitely what dessert should be.