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Ideas for food and beer pairings in the pub

When it comes to dining, beer is being given a major push by brewers and beer writers as an accompaniment to food. With the variety of flavours derived from different hop strains and ingredients, different beers are able to contrast and complement a range of different tastes and dishes. Matching food with beer is great fun, and more pubs are now suggesting beers to accompany their food on menus. Many people think that beer is a better match with food than wine, and it definitely is a great way to enjoy cheese, meat courses and seafood.

Running a food and beer pairing in a pub, or including suggested ales on your menu is a great way to engage customers with different beer styles and show how well many cask ales can stand up to food without overpowering it. Here are some suggested beer and food matches which are taken from CAMRA’s Good Bottled Beer Guide, edited by Jeff Evans.


Vegetable Soup: Pale Bitters, Malty Ales

Meaty Soup: Malty Ales

Shellfish: Souts, Porters

Fish: Light Bitters

Pâté: Milds

Quiche/Soufflé: Light Bitters

Main Course

Beef: Full-Bodied Bitters

Lamb: Spicy Malty Ales

Turkey: Malty Ales

Game: Malty Ales

Sausages: Full-Bodied Bitters

Curries: Strong IPAs

Salad: Floral-Hopped Bitters

Pizzas: Malty lagers

Ploughman’s: Hoppy Fruity Bitters

Cheese (Mild): Light Bitters

Cheese (Stronger): Full Bodied Ales

Cheese (Mature/Blue): Old Ales, Barley Wines


Chocolate/Coffee: Porters, Stouts

Creamy: Stouts