Like craft beer, artisanal cheese and curds is an affordable luxury with price points that make it accessible to just about anyone. While there are no hard and fast “rules” for pairing cheese and beer, and many pairing suggestions from experts are driven by personal taste, these suggestions are always a great place to start when thinking about your own pairings.
The first thing to consider when pairing cheese and beer is the same principle that holds when pairing any food with beer—match the intensity of the beer with the intensity of the flavor of the cheese. The flavor curve of cheese tends to be the inverse of beer—while beer oxidizes and typically mellows in intensity as it ages, the flavors in cheese tend to become sharper, funkier, and more focused as cheese matures.
Lighter beers, such as pale lagers or wheats, pair very well with lighter fresh cheeses such as our Mozzarella, Monterey Jack or our White Cheddar. Strong beers such as Belgian quads, imperial stouts, and barleywines can stand up to older, more pungent cheeses like our RAW White Cheddar.
Just as in other foods, look for notes in the beer that complement the flavor and texture notes in the cheese. To complement, try pairing our Smoked Yellow Cheddar with a malty German bock or 2-Year Aged White Cheddar with an American brown ale. For a contrast, we suggest pairing the funky barnyard notes of our Smoked Monterey Jack with the sweeter notes of a honey saison, allowing the sweeter notes of honey in the beer to balance the intensely pungent cheese.
MARKS Artisans presents cheese, butter and curds on the plate for craft breweries, brew pubs and private events. Cheers!