Welcome to the first edition of Snack Attack, our new series that aims to make beer and food pairings a more every-day treat. With each installment we’ll take a look at simple snack foods and the beers that go with them. First up is one of my favorite things to snack on: fried potatoes!
Beer and food; is there anything better than that? A well-paired combo elevate both the beer and the food and leaves you with a lingering memory. But you don’t always want to sit-down to a thoughtfully constructed pairing meal or a varied cheese plate and taster flight. Sometimes you just want a snack and a cold-one, and that shouldn’t mean you have to forgo the magic of the delicious interplay between food and beer.
Beer pairs with snack-foods just as well as it does with fancy cuisine, and, as a long time carb addict, one of my favorite snack foods is french fries and potato chips. It isn’t hard to find a beer that pairs well with fries; pale ales and IPAs work quite well as the hops help refresh the palate after bites of rich or greasy fries. Craft beer site Billybrew.com makes a great observation about pairing beer and fries:
French fries aren’t exactly a fine dining experience, but not all beer pairings have to be. When you eat fries, you eat a ton of them, and you need a beer that goes down just as easily. Berliner Weisse is the beer for the job.
Low-ABV Berliners are a fantastic suggestion for matching to a basket of fries; we just wish there were more packaged versions available Thankfully, the Pub at Golden Road now has fries on their menu and a light-and-tart Berliner Weisse to go with them.
The next best thing to a basket of hot and crispy pommes is a bag of potato chips, and my favorites are the offerings from Kettle Chips. They might cost you a little more, but they’re high quality and there is a flavor of Kettle Chips for just about every style of beer. In fact, Kettle Brand recently partnered with The Beer Wench to develop specific beer pairings for many of the flavors that they offer:
The Beer Wench’s suggestions are all spot-on, but I especially like the idea of pairing Kettle’s Spicy Thai flavor with a hoppy saison like Pretty Things Jack D’or (or a more local version like the Green Flash Saison Diego.) I haven’t had the Sweet Onion flavor chips yet, but I’ll rectify that soon as the pairing suggestion of an amber ale sounds great.
My very favorite flavor of Kettle Brand chips didn’t make the list: Buffalo Bleu. these hot-wing-and-blue-cheese flavored ridged potato chips were made for pairing with beer, and I like them with just about everything. My favorite match is a thick and hoppy double IPA; the hops highlight the blue cheese flavors and the hops amplify the (already considerable) spice of the chips. I’m getting hungry just thinking about this match.
What are your favorite beers to pair with french fires or potato chips?
- Source: Billybrew.com -What Food Pairs Best with Berliner Weisse?
- Source: Drink With The Wench – Real Chips Deserve Real Beer: Kettle Beer Pairing Guide