Malt-based hard seltzers, coolers and radlers are obviously refreshing on their own, but have they popped up at your table yet? Well, it might be time to invite them over. Their fruity notes and bubbly personalities are totally food-friendly.
Pairing them is easy, too. Just match up their juicy flavours with similar tastes and aromas in your go-to eats. Here are eight of our fave combos.
Peach + barbecue
Cooked low and slow, Southern-style barbecue dishes, such as ribs and pulled pork, need a little kiss of fruit to balance their boldness. A peach seltzer or cooler hits the sweet spot with vinegary and sugary barbecue sauces, and chills out all that smokiness. Feeling extra? Grill up peach wedges and set one on the edge of your glass for a tasty garnish.
Mango + Thai curry
Mango and cilantro are trusted colleagues in Thai and Mexican dishes. Packed with floral and citrus aromas, they chill out chili pepper heat with a bit of sweetness. So break out a mango seltzer to go with your herb-scented Thai curry — adding a mango salad to your order is a no-brainer.
Grapefruit + guacamole
Grapefruit is a quirky fruit: It’s zestier than the other citruses but complicated. Same-same for avocado: It’s rich and fatty yet fresh-tasting. That’s what makes them a love match. Pair up a grapefruit radler with your chips-and-guac situation to keep your palate fresh and ready for that next rich, crunchy bite.
Berry + chocolate cake
Ding ding! Sweet tooth, this is your stop. Berry seltzers and coolers taste amazing with chocolate. Here, their sweet edge plays the complement-and-contrast game with dark, rich, fudgy cake and icing. As if you needed an excuse.
Punch + party sandwiches
Sure, these finger-shaped sammies are tea party must-haves. But they don’t have to be that polite. A strawberry-scented fruit punch cooler sings in perfect harmony with the fresh flavour of cucumber, and any berry pairs well with cream cheese. So whip up a tray of cucumber and cream cheese finger sandwiches — and don’t forget to cut off the crusts!
Watermelon + caprese salad
Tomato and watermelon shine when you match them with basil and mild cheese. So if eating a caprese salad (featuring tomato, basil and fresh mozzarella) is smart, washing it down with a watermelon beverage is just plain genius.
Lemon + grilled white fish
White fish is so often paired with this citrus superstar that it seems lonely without it. Lemon adds brightness and cuts through the natural sweetness of the delicate flesh. That means a lemon cooler or seltzer is just a new twist on an old trick — try it with grilled cod, pike or pickerel.
Lime + shrimp tacos
Lime and shellfish are another true-blue couple. The zip of the citrus bumps up the natural sweetness of those tasty pink crustaceans. Not only that, but lime loves cilantro, tomato salsa and other fresh toppers. Add a lime-flavoured drink and suddenly taco night is the best night of the week.
Hit refresh with radlers, shandies and other tasty beer drinks
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