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What beer to pair with your burger

Hot chili and cold beer are made for each other

Grab your favourite burger and find out which brew brings out the best in its tasty personality

Hands up if burgers are on your radar this week (or, let’s be honest, every week). Whether you like them grilled, pan-fried or broiled — and made from beef, chicken, fish or veggies — they’re an everyday luxury everyone can get behind. Just pick your patty, grab a bun and plop on all the toppings. Go on, get creative. And while you’re at it, why not pair that mouth-watering masterpiece with the ideal brew? These matchups will bring out the best in your burger, whether you like it classic or with the works.

Hamburger + amber lager

The toppings may vary, but all great burgers have one thing in common: caramelization. A grill or griddle brings the heat, which caramelizes any patty, giving it those deliciously crusty outer edges. And what sweet thing is ready to complement that? Meet amber lager, which is crisp and refreshing (like pickles, lettuce and tomato) but malty-sweet enough to tango with that juicy beef patty.

Banquet burger + golden ale

Others may have bacon cheeseburgers, but only Canadians — heck, maybe just Ontarians — call them banquet burgers. And golden ale is the perfect pal for these melty, smoky, classically Canuck sandwiches. Lightly hopped and laid-back, this brew quenches the thirst brought on by the salty bacon and cheese.

Salmon burger + radler

Fish and citrus go way back. You could even say these OG food friends get along swimmingly (sorry, #dadjoke). Made with light-tasting lager and tangy citrus juice, a radler cuts through the richness of that pretty pink salmon patty and is a sunny, fish-friendly refresher.

Greek burger + Belgian witbier (wheat beer)

Imagine you’re floating in the turquoise water around Santorini. Now enjoy a taste of that good life. Just grill up a lamb, beef or chicken patty and slap on some tzatziki, cucumber and onions. Pair your Greek-style burg with a Belgian witbier, and see how the fresh zestiness of the fixings cozies up to the notes of coriander and orange peel in the brew.

Portobello burger + stout

Say it with us: umami. This fifth flavour describes foods that are satisfyingly savoury, like a portobello burger with melted Swiss and a hint of grill smoke. And couldn’t we all use a little more of that right now? Full-flavoured stout brings out the umami in the mushroom and offers up roasty flavours that play nicely with this veg barbecue staple.

Korean barbecue burger + dark lager

Sweet and savoury, with apple and soy notes, Korean barbecue sauce was made for bulgogi, but it’s beautiful on a beefy burger, too. Dark lager has a molasses-y sweetness that suits the sauce, and it’s thirst-quenching enough to chill out the spiciness of the kimchi topper.

Hawaiian burger + India pale ale

Hawaiian pizza fans, here’s your chance! Top your patty with ham and grilled pineapple rings for the perfect union of smoky and sweet. India pale ales (IPAs) often give off tropical fruit aromas thanks to their carefully selected (and powerful) hops, so they make that pineapple pop.

Barbecue chicken burger + dark or brown ale

Grab a patty or a chicken breast — your choice — and slap on a little smoky barbecue sauce. Grill it up right, top it with grilled onions and you have the perfect poultry burger (in our humble opinion). The caramel sweetness of a dark or brown ale will harmonize beautifully with the sweet, saucy, flame-kissed meat.

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