A soup can be served as a starter to most meals or can be a main course and a comfort food. An Italian sausage tortellini soup can be a whole meal in a bowl. When it contains meat, cheese, pasta and veggies pairing it with the right beer can add another dimension of flavors to your soup. For instance, an IPA will really enhance the spicy flavor in the sausage and actually turn up the heat of the spice too. The nature of your beer can balance the spiciness of your comfort food and can also be a great experiment with a lot of delicious results.
Rich and hearty beef stews need a beer that is also rich and hearty. Pair stews with heavy porters or stouts and enjoy the complementing flavors that won’t be over toned by each other. Actually, the seasonings in the stew will be intensified by the roasted flavors in thick beers.
A wheat beer pairs best with a tomato-based soup. The strong fruit tones of the beer cut through the tomatoes acidity. Heavy mushroom soups can be paired with a brown ale allowing you to taste the earthy flavors of the mushrooms.
Cooking with beer is also a delicious option. If you are hungry for a rich, velvety cheese soup with the great flavor of cheddar try using a very mellow tasting lager to accentuate the cheese. Of course there are stouts and porters to add to your stew too. The caramelized and toasted malt flavors of these beers work really well with slow-cooked meat.
During the crisp winter days pairing a cold, delicious beer with a warm bowl of comforting soup might be a different concept for most beer lovers but with the right pairing, a beer can add new and great tastes to a steamy bowl of soup.