Beer Pairings for Dad
The growing popularity of craft beer, and beer in general, has led to an explosion of different types to choose from. Why not give Dad a day of sampling brews on Father's Day by creating a beer-pairing experience for him? Include tastings from craft and specialty beer makers found at your local Food Lion grocery store. From lunch on through to dinner and dessert, we'll help you with the best Father's Day menu items that you can pair with a refreshing beer.
For Father's Day Lunch
Make Dad happy at the start with a seafood brunch or lunch. Pair clams, mussels, scallops, lobster, or crab with fruity Belgian-style saison. These beers are gold to light amber in color with high carbonation and low malt flavor — all ideal characteristics for cutting through the often buttery sauces on shellfish. Also called "farmhouse ales," they're brewed year-round.
If Dad is more of a grains kind of guy and prefers polenta or rice with his fish, pair his preference with American amber lager for a clean, crisp flavor. American amber lager is a light, hoppy style of beer that pairs beautifully with creamy grains and wheat-based dishes. The pairing is ideal because the flavors of the grains complement the hops in the lager. The lager is also refreshing without feeling heavy in your system. If you don't find an American amber lager that looks promising, go for a Bohemian-style pilsner that's crisp, hoppy, and tastes just as great with wheat dishes.
For a Father's Day Afternoon Snack
Surprise Dad with a slew of our Father's Day Cake Pops proudly standing tall in a new beer mug filled with nuts. Pair this sweet and creamy snack with a slightly sour but mildly sweet specialty beer, such as a Belgian-style fruit lambic that goes well with cakes and similar confections. You'll also find lambics labeled "gueuze" or "kriek."
For Father's Day Cocktail Hour
Need an afternoon snack after a Father's Day golf game? Serve chips and homemade hummus with malty and sweet beers. Choose an English-style brown ale or German-style hefeweizen.
English-style brown ale is toasty and robust, and it's a stellar flavor combination when you pair it with nutty hummus. Brown ale can have a dry-roasted flavor or a subtle, sweeter, chocolatey character.
German-style hefeweizen beer is cloudy because of its unique malt and yeast mix, but its bold fruity-spicy flavor is always balanced. These beers are highly bubbly and make for a refreshing sampler on Dad's special day with tortilla chips or pitas and chickpea dip.
For Father's Day Dinner
Start the appetizer with a gourmet cheese plate including a few varieties like buffalo mozzarella and gouda paired with English-style pale ale. From there, serve a main course with a savory meat Dad loves. Ideas include:
- Grilled ribeye marinated in beer and paired with Imperial stout
- Filet mignon with blonde pilsner
- Game birds, like Duck Breast with Balsamic Vinegar
If you're having a side of grilled vegetables, offer Dad some Irish dry stout to balance out the richness of the charred peppers and onions. Here's more about the suggested pairings above:
- English-style pale ale or pale ale in general is a perfect all-purpose
pairing. It's a complex light beer because it's both dry and citrusy. It doesn't compete with cheeses or meats, but it's clean and refreshing enough to temper rich foods.
- Imperial stout is big and bold, so it's an ideal pairing with ribeye. Imperial stouts have a natural oaky tannin that's about as intense as what you'll find in a red wine. The intensity of a stout equals out with the richness and buttery chew of a ribeye.
- Blonde pilsner is subtle with a hint of crisp spice. It's delicate but effervescent, which complements the tender textures of a beef cut like filet mignon.
- Irish dry stout and grilled vegetables go hand-in-hand in the summer. Dry stout is dark and roasty, which matches (but never overpowers) the slight char of grilled veggies.
For Father's Day Dessert
Give Dad a 360-degree chocolate treat. A variety of delicious gourmet dark chocolates on a platter complements a finale of malty and sweet or dark and roasted beer. If your man of the hour prefers cake, make a bold German chocolate cake drizzled with dark cocoa sauce. Both of these beers highlight the fleeting roasted flavors in dark chocolate.
- German-style bock beers have deep, strong, and full-bodied sweetness balanced with a toasted, nut-like malt.
- Baltic-style porter is deep, rich, and velvety soft on the palate. It's perfect with dark chocolate thanks to its roasted character. Plus, it has hints of chocolate and coffee that complement chocolate-packed dishes. You'll find most Baltic-style porters out in winter and spring, so you might want to pick one up and keep it hidden away for June's celebration.
For extra ideas for Father's Day foodie fun, check out this article on even more wine and beer pairings. Head to Foodlion.com to learn more about what to grill and to discover new recipes you can make for Dad any day you want to celebrate him.