Chocolate Recipes Served With Beer (5) Collection
bitter greens, reggiano, hazelnuts and shaved chocolate 
veal with chocolate and orange 
dan gordon's chocolate mousse 
coffee-rubbed squab stuffed with chocolate caramel 
grandma slosberg's chocolate pie 
beer & chocolate: who knew this unlikely pair would hit it off? 
by carolyn jung 
san jose mercury news 
beer and pretzels. beer and peanuts. beer and buffalo wings. had your 
then this valentine's day, experience a new dynamic duo -- beer and 
chocolate. forget about popping the cork on the bubbly. pop off a cap 
and go for the sudsy. 
not manly enough? not girly enough? tr=e8s tr=e8s gauche? 
one taste will make you swallow those doubts. 
sure, champagne and chocolate get points for posh. and red wine and 
chocolate, especially port and dark chocolate, are naturals. but beer 
and chocolate are surprisingly compatible. 
when pete slosberg rhapsodizes about chocolate and brewski, he's used 
to the raised eyebrows. over the past year, the creator of pete's 
wicked ale and founder of campbell's cocoa pete's has organized 15 
dinners at seattle, los angeles and bay area restaurants, in which 
each course featured chocolate and was paired with a different beer. 
diners arrived curious and skeptical, he says, but left converted. 
``don't imagine hershey's with budweiser. get that thought way out of 
your mind,'' slosberg says. ``think of a full-flavored chocolate and 
a full-flavored beer. imagine putting those together and creating a 
third flavor that's even better.'' 
think pork loin with creamy milk chocolate mashed potatoes served 
with the los gatos brewing co.'s pale ale. or cocoa-crusted 
sweetbreads with white chocolate parsnip flan paired with bosteels 
kwak ale of belgium. or pan-seared skate with foie gras and chocolate 
balsamic brown butter accompanied by bosteels tripel karmeleit. those 
are among the imaginative dishes that have starred at slosberg's 
after all, chocolate has the marvelous ability to make so many foods 
lusher and richer, and beer is bold enough to heighten or contrast 
at toronto's beerbistro, a restaurant that pairs beer with all its 
dishes, belgian chocolate mousse made with chimay blue belgium beer 
is served with a spicy delerium tremens belgian ale; white chocolate 
creme brulee is matched with a robust choulette blonde of france; and 
a belgian chocolate and ale fondue is enjoyed with a hearty belgium 
chimay premiere. 
for years, british breweries have crafted ales and stouts flavored 
with chocolate. last year, boston-based samuel adams joined the club 
with chocolate bock, a dark, malty, vanilla-like beer made with 
gourmet scharffen berger chocolate. 
chocolate bock has racked up gold medals from the brewing industry 
international awards in london and from the north american brewers 
association. released in a limited quantity last valentine's day, the 
beer was such a hit that it was re-released last christmas at 150,000 
bottles, triple its original production. the company is now deciding 
whether to do a third release of the beer, which sells for $14.99 for 
a wine-bottle size bottle. 
john scharffenberger, co-founder of berkeley's scharffen berger 
chocolate and founder of the now defunct scharffenberger cellars in 
philo, admits he had his doubts about putting his chocolate in a beer. 
``at first we thought, `how dumb,' '' he says with a laugh. ``i'm in 
the wine business, and everyone's always trying to put things 
together. and sometimes you should just leave things alone. but it 
didn't take me long to figure out that hops and cocoa are not too far 
apart in the flavor experience. they both have astringency and 
fruitiness. sometimes wine stumbles with flavors. beer has a little 
more unctuousness to it. it is pretty darn good with chocolate.'' 
slosberg finds it easier to pair chocolate with beer than with wine, 
largely because when a producer brews beer to a certain style, tastes 
and aromas may vary a little from brand to brand but will always be 
close to the guidelines of that particular style. for instance, ales 
are fermented at higher temperatures, so they have more fruity 
aromas. lagers are fermented at lower temperatures and aged for a 
longer period of time, so they lack that fruity quality. 
contrast that with wine, where geography, soil, weather, blending and 
aging can make a particular varietal taste vastly different year to 
year and place to place. just compare a rich, berry-like pinot noir 
from sonoma to an earthy pinot noir from oregon to a minerally 
burgundy from france. 
as with wine, where the old-school rules of red wine with red meat 
and white wine with fish have gone out the door, there are no hard 
and fast rules about which beers go with which chocolates. 
experiment, letting your imagination be your guide. just be sure to 
use high-quality chocolate and high-quality beer for the best results. 
dark beers, with fruity, spicy, coffee, almost chocolate-y flavors, 
go exceptionally well with dark chocolates, slosberg says. dark beers 
such as stouts or porters also are a great foil for dark chocolate 
caramels. amber ales, with their nutty, grape nuts-like taste, are 
ideal with chocolates with nuts. amber ales done in the belgian abbey 
style, which is stronger, thicker and fruitier, go wonderfully with 
medium dark chocolates with fruit, especially strawberries. and india 
pale ales, which have a strong malty flavor, go well with milk 
chocolates that aren't overwhelmingly sweet. 
dan gordon, co-founder of gordon biersch brewing co. in san jose, 
favors contrasting rather than complementary tastes. he prefers a 
mildly sweet marzen with dark chocolate, and a crisp pilsner with 
milk chocolate. 
justin perez, executive chef-owner of restaurant o catering in 
campbell and a wine aficionado, admits it's much more challenging to 
him to pair chocolate with beer because of the brew's heavier, bitter 
taste. depending on the beer, though, sometimes one taste is all it 
takes to inspire. that's what happened when perez sipped a rogue 
hazelnut brown nectar from oregon. he immediately knew that the beer, 
with its pronounced blackberry and caramel notes, would enhance a 
dish using game birds, blackberries and dark chocolate. 
this valentine's day, throw out those preconceived notions about what 
to serve. instead, enjoy a candle-lit, romantic three-course dinner 
-- one that's all about chocolate and beer. start with a salad of 
bitter greens, toasted hazelnuts, parmigiano-reggiano and shaved 
chocolate, enjoyed with a hearty belgian abbey-style beer. follow 
with a voluptuous coffee-rubbed squab that's stuffed under the skin 
with chocolate. serve with a nutty tasting rogue hazelnut brown 
nectar. end with spoonfuls of chocolate mousse, enjoyed between sips 
of gordon biersch light. 
just remember: when your sweetie pulls out that six-pack of 
craft-brewed suds, try not to look shocked. grab the bottle opener 
with gusto, along with a box of gourmet chocolates. and get ready for 
another match made in heaven. besides the two of you, of course. 
expert pairings 
john scharffenberger, co-founder of scharffen berger chocolate co. in 
berkeley: a craft-brewed dark bock with dark chocolate. 
dan gordon, co-founder of gordon biersch brewing company in san jose: 
prefers opposites paired. a bitter, drier, crisper beer like a 
pilsner to balance creamy, sweet milk chocolate. a mildly sweet, 
smooth beer like a marzen with bittersweet dark chocolate. 
pete slosberg, founder of cocoa pete's chocolate adventures 
confection company in campbell: a medium dark chocolate with fruity 
notes paired with a belgium abbey-style beer like chimay blue. dark 
chocolate caramel with stout or porter. a not-too-sweet milk 
chocolate with india pale ale. a very creamy milk chocolate, such as 
lindt, with an english brown ale like newcastle's. a good quality, 
not too sweet, white chocolate with a czech pilsner. 
(ID: 2418) Mirror: Wed, Jun 1, 2005

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