Pour It On! Brews & Breads
Winning matchups featuring craft beer and some of today’s most delicious breads
We may experience them in very different forms, but with grain, water and yeast in common, beer and bread are close cousins. When it’s time to pair beer with food, however, most restaurant professionals look elsewhere on the plate for guidance, seeking complementary notes in proteins, vegetables and spices.
Many of the artisanal breads available today are worthy of beer pairings of their own. Following are some of the best matchups recommended by Tim Garso, beverage director for Galley Group, a Pittsburgh-based food hall development company.
Classic, rustic flavors are associated with this ciabatta, ideal to pair with a beer that’s bright, flavorful and not overpowering. A crisp lager like Victory Prima Pils jumps out, with its classic German noble hops, bright citrus and earthiness.
A nut brown ale, preferably barrel-aged to add a layer of complexity. Pittsburgh’s East End brewing makes Fat Gary nut brown ale and, every so often, Fatter Gary, which is barrel aged; some have a flavor of burnt pretzels, which is perfect with this roll.
Go with a pale wheat ale for a soft brioche, something with a slight hop bite like Lagunitas’ A Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’. More intense brioches match up with a decadent beer like a British-style barleywine, with big, sticky toffee notes as a natural foil.
Lean toward hoppy beers, but nothing too over the top. Classics like Sierra Nevada or New Belgian Fat Tire Amber, which have some hops, but a lot of amber malt notes, are ideal. Also look for beers that use summit hops, which have an onion characteristic.
Choose a grisette, which is similar to a saison. It has classic farmhouse hay notes, and is light enough to pair with the subtle notes of the bread, but also has a welcome bit of funk and tartness.
Nothing better than a rye pale ale. Look for Kentucky Ryed Chiquen (from Against the Grain Brewery), an amber ale aged in rye barrels. The spicy rye notes of the barrel complement some of the sweeter, more subtle notes of an amber ale.
Bread is Back
Brioche, buns, baguettes and more!
No-carb diets may have temporarily taken a slice out of bread’s market mastery, but in 2019 we’re happy to report the triumphant return of the consummate carrier. Premium, artisan and classic breads and rolls are leading the pack, providing the framework for a sensational sandwich experience.
Inside the Loaf at Brickfire Bakery
Perfection is baked into each loaf of Brickfire Bakery’s artisan creations, beginning with low-speed mixing of the dough, allowing gluten to develop undisturbed. This results in “low stress lines” or big, beautiful pockets of air inside the loaves that enhance the flavor. You’ll also see “crumb,” the open-hole texture that can only be achieved by a slow rise. Our loaves are given a full 24 hours to rise to perfection. Instead of speeding up the proofing process so the bread rises more quickly, the process is slowed down so more complex flavors and textures can develop.