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Top 10 beer and food pairings

Have you ever wondered what food might best complement the malty hops of your brown ale or the crisp finish of your American lager? Then look no further.

The world of wine is rampant with food pairing suggestions helping you to perfectly pair your Malbec with a steak or your Chablis with seafood.

But the world of beer is catching up when it comes to food and drink finesse.

With the increasing diversity of craft beers affording more complex flavour combinations, the art of pairing beer with food has taken off.

Here you will find a round up of suggested food pairings to match a variety of beers from oysters and gouda to chilli and salads. 

Scroll through to find your favourite brew’s perfect food match.

1. India Pale Ale

Tastes: Malty with prominent hoppy aroma and flavour.

Well known brews: Greene King and Goose Island

Suggested pairing: Strong, spicy foods such as curry or bold sweet desserts such as chocolate cake and crème brulée.

Cheese pairing: Milder varieties such as gorgonzola.

2. Amber Lager

Taste: Roasted, malty sweetness with well-balanced, dry bitterness.

Well known brews: Brooklyn Lager, Budweiser Black Crown

Suggested pairing: Pairs well with tomato sauce based dished and foods flavoured with flavoured with basil and oregano.

Cheese pairing: Manchego

3. Brown Ale

Taste: Malty flavour balanced with hints of caramel and chocolate.

Well known brews: Newcastle Brown Ale

Suggested pairing: Pairs well with roasted pork, smoked sausage and the nutty flavours of chicken satay, cashew chicken, pecan pie and peanut sauces.

Cheese pairing:Cheddar

4. Porter


Taste: Roasted flavour with by nutty and toffee characteristics.

Well known brews: Fuller’s London Porter, Anchor Porter

Suggested pairing: Works well with smoked meats, including bacon. Complements chocolate, espresso, coffee-flavoured desserts and soft, creamy cheeses.

Cheese pairing: Gorgonzola

5. Stout

Taste: Prevalent chocolate and coffee flavours.

Well known brews: Murphy’s Irish Stout, Guinness

Suggested pairing: Works well with the nuttiness and braised quality of caramelised dishes with brown, savoury sauces. Complements salty foods like oysters.

Cheese pairing: Aged gouda

6. American Lager

Taste: Balance of hops and malt with crisp, dry finish.

Well known brews: Budweiser, Samuel Adams

Suggested pairing: Contrasts well with Thai, Pan-Asian, Latino Fusion, Mexican, Peruvian and other spicy cuisines.

Cheese pairing: Brie

7. Pilsner

Taste: Pronounced hops aroma and bitterness with a refreshing finish.

Well known brews: Becks, Urquell

Suggested pairing: Works well with salmon, tuna and other high-fat, oily fish and marbled meats. Its bitterness allows for a pleasant contrast with sweet reductions and sauces.

Cheese pairing: Goats cheese

8. Blonde Beer/Cream Ale

Taste: Smooth malty sweetness and balanced bitterness.

Well known brews: Leffe, Paulaner

Suggested pairing: Pairs perfectly with sweet, hot, or spicy foods including many Asian dishes, chilli, mango or jalapeño salsa.

Cheese pairing: Brie

9. Pale Ale

Taste: Malty sweetness balanced by hoppy bitterness.

Well known brews: Old Speckled Hen, London Pride

Suggested pairing: The bitterness of its hops contrasts with spicy, heat-charred, smoky, or aromatic flavours such as those in Stilton and blue cheese.

Cheese pairing: Blue cheese

10. Belgian Witbier

Taste: Unfiltered with orange, citrus and coriander aromas.

Well known brews: Hoegaarden, Vedett

Suggested pairing: Goes well with salads with light citrus dressings and feta or goat cheese as well as ceviches and other light, citrus flavoured dishes.

Cheese pairing: Smoked gouda

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