Craft Beer paired with BBQ Sauce

Aug 9, 2016

Craft Beer and BBQ go hand in hand as one of the many grilling options during the summer months. There are many variations on BBQ sauce recipes and their flavor profiles and here are some great suggestions for pairing these sauces. Some BBQ sauces are sweet, some smoky, some spicy and some are a combination of these. BBQ sauce can be used when grilling on many different things such as ribs, pork, chicken, beef, and even shrimp.

One of my favorite pairings for a smoky BBQ sauce is a Scotch Ale. Scottish-style ales have a nice solid malt base with a touch of peat which enhances the smoky flavors while the sweetness of the beer plays well with the acidity of the sauce. If you are using a Carolina-style mustard base sauce I would go with a Cream Ale, Kolsch Ale, or a Blonde Ale like Wolf Creek’s Golden Eagle. These beers have a touch more sweetness, less bitterness and are balanced between the malt and hops. These will provide a nice compliment to the spiciness of a mustard sauce.

The other Carolina-style BBQ sauce is ketchup and vinegar based and will pair well with a nice Pilsner which has a nice biscuit malt profile and just enough hops to stand up to the vinegar. Another popular style of sauce is the Asian or Hawaiian-style of sauce which includes pineapple, soy and ginger. A great pairing for this sauce is a Milk Stout which has a subtle sweetness and the dark roasted malts go well with the char on the meat. These are only a few of the possibilities but the next time you BBQ this summer give these pairings a try! Cheers!

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