Antipasto is an Italian word meaning 'before the meal' and traditionally consists of bruschetta, cured meats, olives, vegetables soaked in oil or vinegar and a wide variety of cheeses including provolone, mozzarella or goat cheese. Creating a beer pairing to complement or contrast these foods might seem daunting but with these suggestions your light dish will be absolutely delicious.
The always popular and equally delicious bruschetta is best paired with a golden and refreshing lager. The light hoppy flavouring of lagers cut through the garlic's dominant zing in this dish while accentuating the sweetness of the tomatoes and the lighter side of the onions. The grainy taste of the malts will complement the toasted baguette but will leave you with a cleansed palate after each sip.
Aged provolone often consists of very bold, sharp tastes and needs a beer with a lot of malt flavouring to really complement it's strong nature. Nut brown ales have just the characteristics to cut through the cheeses salt allowing you to really taste the sweet undertones. Wheat beers that carry a complex, sweet taste will work the best with a goat cheese. When pairing these two, the more pungent the cheese is the more full bodied you will want your wheat beer to be.
When pairing spicy meats like genoa salami, you'll want the complementary aromatic flavours of a hoppy IPA. Cured meats like prosciutto contain the sweet notes of ham which can be contrasted with a dark, strong porter. The sweetness of the pork and beer will cancel each other allowing the malts to really come out of the beer.