As soon as there’s a glimmer of sunshine, you can guarantee we’ve trundled the barbecue out of its sleepy garden shed spot and into the yard.
Any excuse for marinating and smoking food has us getting giddy! Whether we’re getting creative with vegetables, piecing together courgette and halloumi
skewers or being inspired by smoked paprika spices, cumin and garlic to marinate a chunk of brisket.
Not far behind in the barbecue food selection is the thought of what to pair with each course and beer slides effortlessly into that thinking. With its myriad of styles and therefore flavours on offer, once you put the simple checklist into play - bridging, balancing or boosting flavours - you’ll never have any trouble finding that perfect match. If you want to discover more suggestions we recommend looking out for beer and food writer Mark Dredge’s books, they often include recipes too using beer, win win. We’ll be bringing a few of the below beers to our pop-up stall at Sheffield Food Festival on Monday, so please do come find us in the Peace Garden’s market walkway area to chat more about beer and food, we’d love to meet you.
Here’s our top five barbecue beer picks to get you started....
1. Thinking about beer braising short ribs why not try pairing it with this year’s hot beer style IPL - India pale lager. Each year a style emerges and becomes the beer to be brewing - 2018 is the year of the hoppy lager. I’m a big fan of the crisp, refreshing style anyway so add in a bit of lovely citrus hop character and you’ve got us hooked already. Manchester’s Cloudwater have been running a few different hops through their series of IPLs and we also like the low strength, but big flavours. Try using a little in the marinade too. We liked this BBC Good Food recipe for beer braised ribs >>> https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/beer-braised-short-ribs
2. Take a twist on the usual taco filling and go fish (lemon sole goujons) with green jalapeño salsa and chilli cream, maybe even add a fruity spicy mango salsa into the mix. With the abundance of flavours, heat and spice we think an acidic, mouth watering beer kick is the balance to the party of tastes going on. A dry-hopped kettle sour like Evil Twin’s ‘Nasty Trunks’ will revitalise the palate after each spicy mouthful and quench the thirst.
3. Looking for an alternative to meaty burgers, we love the combination of carrot and sesame in a burger add a lick of tahini paste on a sesame laden bun to amp it all up. The sweet elements to the carrots and tahini balance the bitterness from a classic hopped-up IPA (India pale ale), look for a more bitter, classic West coast USA style IPA such as Magic Rock Brewing’s ‘Cannonball’.
4. What makes the barbecue elevated in our humble opinion are the selection of pickles, think white wine vinegar pickled gherkins with dill! All the salty, earthy and freshness combined make us stretch for a Belgian beer, something with lots of fruity esters, strength and balance to match up to the pickles. Head for Brasserie D’Achouffe’s classic 8% ‘La Chouffe’ - it’s the beer with the friendly gnome on the front label.
5. For dessert finish on char-grilled pineapple slices with a vanilla syrup glaze. This pairing is a straight boost, pick up a milkshake beer, that is, something with lactose in such as Wander Beyond’s ‘Illicium Imperial Milkshake IPA’.
Hop Hideout is an award-winning independent beer shop and tasting room based on Abbeydale Road, Sheffield.