For many people, an ice-cold beer and a cheese plate is a delightful way to spend the afternoon. While many a cicerone might have creative food and beverage pairings, the combinations might be more opinion than science. Dogfish Head and Cabot Creamery have created The Perfect Pairing and it might be the ultimate beer and cheese combination.
Dogfish Head often looks to push the beer conversation forward. While it might have peeled back the layers with one recently eccentric offering, the brewery is never afraid to be different. Even though its classic IPAs will always quench a thirst, there are plenty of ways to put innovation in the can.
Recently, Dogfish Head partnered with Cabot Creamery to create a “scientifically-engineered” hazy pale ale that is the must drink beer while eating sharp cheddar cheese. Using whey from Cabot Creamery, there is a hint of sweetness that is balanced with the hoppy forward sip. With some brightness from grapefruit and pineapple, it can cut through the richness of the sharp cheddar cheese. One sip and one bite will have everyone swooning.
As Maegan Olsen, R&D Food Technologist at Cabot Creamery described the pairing, The Perfect Pairing both awakens the palate and cleanses it after each bite. From the carbonation to the acid from the fruit, it contrasts the Seriously Sharp Cheddar Cheese. Olsen said, “The Perfect Pairing shares some of the same DNA as Cabot’s Seriously Sharp Cheddar, with the use of Cabot’s whey permeate as a unique ingredient to the recipe. The collaboration was a natural fit (and extremely fun!) as Dogfish + Cabot both take the time to lovingly craft their products starting with the magical process of fermentation.”
For beer drinkers and cheese lovers who want to try this offering, it is available in the new The Off-Centered Party Pack. This 12 pack features four hop-centric beers. The other beers are 90 Minute IPA, 60 Minute IPA and Blue Hen Pilsner.
While The Perfect Pairing beer might be innovative, it is not the only food and beverage pairing. Since the special beer is part of The Off-Centered Party Pack, the variety pack comes with suggested beer pairings.
As Sam Calagione, Dogfish Head Founder & Brewer said, “Many folks think of pairing cheese with wine, but beer and cheese pairings can be just as complex and delicious. We had a blast working alongside the folks at Cabot to create, from a sensory perspective, the perfect beer to pair with sharp cheddar cheese. With The Perfect Pairing, and Dogfish Head’s entire Off-Centered Party Pack, we want to open drinkers’ minds and palates to the intricacies of beer and cheese and introduce them to the culinary magic that can be found when you artfully combine the two.”
Here are some suggested beer and cheese pairings from Dogfish Head and Cabot Creamery.
90 Minute IPA with Habanero Cheddar
The 90 Minute IPA is a big beer at 9.0% ABV. While the name refers to the 90 minute boil, the bold beer is all about the hoppy character. Even though the beer is perfectly balanced, all the flavors are apparent. From the woody pine to the zesty citrus hops and even the malt, it is a beer that has people pondering for more than just 90 minutes.
Serving this beer with a Habanero Cheddar highlights the spice in the beer. While the citrus notes can keep the spice at a manageable level, the contrasts are quite satisfying.
60 Minute IPA and Cracked Peppercorn Cheddar
Considered one of the brand’s most popular beers, the 60 Minute IPA is a classic. At just 6.0% ABV, it is sessionable and can be a good introduction for those people who are learning about the IPA category. Without too much bitter yet apparent hops, this beer is always a good choice.
When paired with the cracked peppercorn cheddar, the slight heat from the pepper brings out the hop. Make sure to have a buttery cracker to enjoy with this pairing as well.
Blue Hen Pilsner and Pepper Jack
Consider a crisp, refreshing, and quite drinkable beer at just 4.8% ABV, the relatively simple beer is approachable. While it might be small yet mighty, it should not be overlooked. A little malty but still intriguing, it is worth another sip.
Similar to the pepper jack cheese, this pairing might be overlooked. Instead of the cheese delegated to the burger, it could be time to put this idea front and center on the cheese plate.
Ready to crack open a cold one and enjoy a slice? Which beer and cheese pairing has you intrigued?