While dessert wines are nothing new, matching after-dinner treats with a tasty beer may not be something that would immediately spring to mind. However, Rod Jones, beer sommelier and head brewer at The Old Brewery restaurant and microbrewery in Greenwich, has been pairing beers with desserts at the restaurant for the past couple of years. Here, he gives his expert beer and pudding matching tips for dessert with a difference...
Lemon meringue pie will love a Timmerman Lambic Blanche
This wheat beer works well with something zesty on the side, like a lemon meringue pie. The natural citrus of the beer will accentuate the lemon in the dessert to create a whole new taste sensation.
Match a cheesecake with Boon Framboise
Only Frank Boon brews in Lembeek, the village that gave this style its name. This beer spends two years in oak vats maturing, with 200 grams of real (not syrup or concentrate) raspberries per litre of beer. The natural sweetness and light, slightly sharp, acidic notes of the fruit mean that it cuts through and lifts a great-tasting creamy cheesecake.
Pair a banoffee pie with Schneider Aventinus
This beer is the classic Weizen Bock. The caramel flavours of the beer will work perfectly with the toffee flavours of the banoffee, while wheat beers and banana are a great combination. The beer’s finish is light and delicate with a smoothly rounded, sour impression which helps to take away that cloying sensation you can get from a really sticky pie.
Tarte tatin and Meantime London Pale Ale are a perfect pair
Sweet desserts are a great contrast to the hop flavour and light bitterness of a Pale Ale. That means that desserts involving fruit and caramel are going to go well with this light, easy-drinking beer style. One note of caution: stay away from chocolate with a Pale Ale: rich chocolate flavours clash with the sweet, hoppy flavours of the beer.
Chocolate soufflé or chocolate brownie will marry with Ola Dubh
Translating as “Black Oil,” this beer is a collaboration between the Harviestoun Brewery and the nearby Highland Park whisky distillery. It’s the first ale to be aged in malt whisky casks from a named distillery. As you might expect, the Ola Dubh 12 has whisky flavours that work with the chocolate, while being a Porter, the beer itself has delicious natural notes of toffee, dark chocolate and coffee.
What do you think? Will you be swapping dessert wine for dessert beer? Tell us your thoughts on Twitter or in the comments section below.