Thanksgiving beer pairings: What goes well with turkey, pies and sides

Can you believe that tomorrow is Thanksgiving?? I saw four-packs of Two Roads Holiday Ale at the package store a few weeks ago and it made me so excited for the season! Anyway, if you're heading to a feast tomorrow and you're not much of a cook, why not bring a few Connecticut craft brews to present to your host? Better yet, find some brews that fit the following Thanksgiving beer and food pairings, as prescribed by The New York Times.  

"To Pair with That Thanksgiving Bird, Consider Beer" sets the table with recommendations for snacks and apps, turkey and sides, and desserts. I've taken their suggestions and, based on recommended styles, offer you Connecticut craft beers that pair well with Thanksgiving food.

Plenty of local breweries are celebrating Thanksgiving Eve tonight – some are even staying open later than usual for the festivities, and to give you time to pick up a growler or two to fill out your Thanksgiving beer menu. Check your favorite brewery's Facebook page or website for hours!

Thanksgiving Beer + Food: Snacks and Apps

thanksgiving beer snacks

Don't weigh guests down before the main event – light beers are best for snacks and apps. Photo info:  'Saison Cheese Party' by Allagash Brewing is licensed by CC BY 2.0

The Times suggests something "light and easy" to pair with snacks and apps before dinner – you don't want folks to be weighed down before the main event. Pilsners, helles lagers, dunkel lagers, and light saisons will do.

My recommendations: DuVig's Vienna Lager (I've seen it in cans at some package stores), Two Roads' Worker's Comp SaisonAspetuck Brew Lab's SaisonCounterweight's Workhorse Pilsner

Thanksgiving Beer + Food: Turkey and Sides

thanksgiving beer turkey

Like the turkey's dark and white meat, you need light and dark beers on hand for your Thanksgiving feast. Photo info: 'Thanksgiving Meal 2009' by Craig Dugas is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

For the main event, the Times says the Thanksgiving menu should be paired with both light and dark beers (just like we've got white and dark meat on the turkey). On the lighter end, they recommend a classic saison. Darker – weizenbocks and Belgian dubbels.

My recommendations: Kent Falls' Nature and Resisting the Obvious, any of Belgian-style brewing Overshores' offerings. Anyone know of any CT-brewed weizenbocks? You might have to cheat on this one by heading to your local super-size package store to hunt for a weizenbock.

Thanksgiving Beer + Food: Dessert

thanksgiving beer pie

 Got pumpkin pie on the menu? Pair it with an imperial stout. Photo info: "Pumpkin Pie" by Kimberly Vardeman is licensed under CC BY 2.0

According to the Times, you'll want to avoid any beer that's too dessert-y (like a sweet pumpkin ale). Instead, look for something more coffee-like. Makes sense. They suggest an imperial stout.

My recommendations: Well, this is easy. There are so many imperial stouts to choose from in Connecticut craft beer landscape. How about New England Brewing Co.'s Imperial Stout Trooper, or Still Hill's VanHilla Imperial Porter (not a stout, but definitely a beer that would pair well with pumpkin pie), or Back East's Ex-Machina Imperial Stout?

If you want to do some pie-specific beer pairings, check out this great graphic from VinePair. Have a great Thanksgiving – cheers!

No Comments Yet.

Leave a comment