Summer Food Pairings
Get Your Bearings on Pairings
Will you be relaxing on the deck or picnicking in the park this summer? How about hosting a summer barbecue or attending a Mexican fiesta? No matter what you do, you’ll want to choose the right drinks for your food. From wine and beer to cocktails, there is a perfect match, and we’ve got the lowdown on the best pairings for your summertime sharings.
Start with a drink you know you lovereally. If you don’t like a certain wine, beer or cocktail, chances are you won’t like it with your food. Slightly contrast the flavors in your food with the flavors in your drink-too much of one will overpower the other. At the same time, complementing similar flavors offers continuity that will help your drink and dish shine. Consider pairing lighter summer dishes such as chicken, fish or salads with drinks lighter in alcohol contentand don’t forget that alcohol amplifies heat or spicy flavors in dishes. When it comes to the sweet stuff, a basic rule of thumb is to go sweeter on the drink than the dessert or dish.
And at the end of the day, the best way to decipher what works best is to experiment. So grab your friends and loved ones and find your own bearings on pairings.
Sip on this Beer
Beer May Cure What Ails



Beer may prevent kidney stones. A study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology estimated that a bottle of beer consumed every day reduces the risk by 40 percent.


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Dine With Wine: Your Perfect Match
At the top of everyone’s to-drink list this summer: wine. Whether it’s white, red or a shade in between, there is a perfect match to make your summer dish sing.
Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc and Riesling are light on the palate and have a clean finish, creating flavorful combinations with salads, seafood and chicken dishes. For dishes with an umami taste such as burgers, steaks and sausages choose robust reds, including Cabernet, Merlot or Malbecand if you can’t pick just one, try a blend.
Seafood dishes including pan-seared scallops or crayfish frequent tabletops this time of year and pair well with the crisp acidity and complex flavors of citrusy ripe tropical fruit notes found in Kim Crawford’s Sauvignon Blanc.
Sam Adams Grilled Skirt Steak Tacos
Food is Better With a Good Beer
Just like wine, beer is better when accompanied by the right flavors and seasonings. Before firing up the grill this season, make sure you’ve got the right brew for all your favorite summertime apps, sides, mains and desserts.
Darker beers such as brown ale, stout, and porter pair best with hearty meats like beef and pork, as well as oysters, salmon and blackened fish. If lighter beers such as Pilsners, IPAs or Hefeweizens are more appealing, consider lighter dishes including salads, fish tacos or even a fruit platter.



Samuel Adams Boston Lager Grilled Skirt Steak Tacos
Serves 8
1 yellow onion, coarsely chopped
3 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
12 ounces (1 1/2 cups) Samuel Adams Boston Lager
1 1/2 cups Coca-Cola or another cola
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 pounds skirt steak, trimmed
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
24 corn tortillas
About 3/4 pound Monterey jack cheese, shredded
1/2 pound guacamole, store bought or homemade
1 red onion, diced
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
2 limes, quartered
In a medium-sized bowl, combine the oil, beer, garlic, chili powder, both mustards, cayenne, paprika and black pepper.
Lay the steak in a shallow glass, ceramic or rigid plastic dish and pour the marinade over the meat. Turn the steak to coat it on both sides, cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours and up to 12 hours. Turn the steak a few times during marinating. Alternatively, put the steak in a sturdy, zipped plastic bag, add the marinade and manipulate the meat in the bag to coat it well.

Prepare a charcoal or gas grill so that it is medium hot, or heat the broiler. Grill the steak for about 5 minutes on each side for medium-rare, or to your desired degree of doneness. Let the steak rest on a cutting board for about 5 minutes. Slice it crosswise against the grain and serve.

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Summer Spirits Not Forgotten
Whiskey, bourbon, rum, gin, vodka and tequila can amplify food flavors too.
Whether it’s tipped back between a lick of salt and a squeeze of fresh lime juice or blended into a Margarita, tequila is a refreshing choice to liven up any fiesta. Olay.
Bourbon, Whiskey, Rum
The smooth, oaky and sometimes sweet notes found in rum cut through the fat of any roasted pork or salted meat. Bourbon’s bold, dark flavors hold their own against barbecued meats while whiskey paired with a well-aged marbled beefsteak will whisk(ey) you off your feet.
Gin and Vodka
We recommend enjoying either clear spirit with fish. Infused with juniper and intricate layers of botanical notes, gin complements the salty yet sweet flavor of any shrimp cocktail or chilled seafood platter. Vodka, on the other hand, should be served icy cold with caviar, smoked fish, herring or by itself. Nostrovia.


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