Pairing fine food with Budweiser? Absolutely, especially when the venerable American lager is matched with the right flavors. Anheuser-Busch InBev showed off the food-friendliness of some of its signature beers during a Brewmaster dinner for visiting journalists on Nov. 20.
The five-course meal, hosted by A-B InBev Brewmaster Rebecca Reid at Mike Shannon’s Steaks & Seafood in Saint Louis, MO, began with Bud paired with Four-Way Bruschetta, with Bacon Jam, Olive Tapanade, Wild Mushrooms and Fennel Shallot Beer and Date Compote. The clean, strong flavors of the Budweiser cuts through the fat of the bacon and cleanses the palate between the different bruschetta toppings, Reid said, while the sweetness of the fennel topping highlights the slight sweetness of the beer.
The second course, Shaved Kale Salad with Blueberries, Pumpernickel Croutons, Pickled Red Onion and Vaideon Bleu Cheese with Lemon-Poppy Seed Dressing was paired with Sofie, a Belgian-style Farmhouse Ale style beer brewed by A-B InBev’s Goose Island Beer Co. in Chicago. The tart, citrus characteristics of the ale went goes with the dressing, which also includes a touch of Sofie.
Next was a decadent Lobster Mac & Cheers with Irish Cheddar, Fontina, Truffle Peel, Truffle Panko and Lobster, matched with Stella Artois. The European-style pilsner, which was included in the sauce as well, has a clean bitterness that cuts through the richness of the dish, Reid said. Plus the brand’s signature chalice glass “is great at focusing those flavors up to your nose,” she said.
The fourth course was a Cast-Iron Seared, Grass-Fed Filet, topped with Black Crown Butter, Fresh-Grilled Asparagus, Roasted Yukon Gold and Sweet Potato Medley, paired with Budweiser Black Crown. The golden amber lager’s carmelly finish accentuates the char marks of the steak, Reid says. And since Black Crown is sweeter than some of the other beers, “it balances the other flavors,” she added.
For the fifth and final course, a Deep-Dish, Upside Down Apple Pie A la Mode, Reid chose Stella Artois Cidre. The crisp, European-style cider has a complex flavor profile with other fruit notes in the aroma, such as apricot, Reid said. The cidre made for a unique and refreshing finish to a phenomenal meal.