By Justin Dolezal, Foodable Contributor
Most restaurateurs would agree that a judgement of a restaurant based on its beverage program would be a fair, if somewhat incomplete, assessment. To that end, business owners are willing to spend and spend big on expansive, curated wine lists, as well as thoughtfully-designed, creative cocktail programs. Alcohol, as the French gourmand Brillat-Savarin so eloquently stated, “is the prince of liquids, and carries the palate to its highest pitch of exaltation.” Educated (and, frankly, less than educated) consumers are well aware of this dynamic, and providing them with drinks that will enhance their meal can make a good dining experience great.
It's a shame, then, that so few restaurants give a fraction of the attention paid to wine and spirits to their beer programs. While beer as haute cuisine may be a relatively recent phenomenon, it's ascending to a level of sophisticated consumption previously reserved for fine wine. And why not? The wide range of styles and flavor profiles available in the current craft beer environment make beer a fantastic pairing partner for almost every style of food, from hearty steaks to light spring salads. The carbonation naturally present in beer scrubs and enlivens the palate, keeping dishes exciting throughout their consumption. And compared to the amount required to maintain a respectable wine cellar, beer is a bargain. The tips below will help you create a beer program that is diverse, exciting, and enhances the dining experience your restaurant provides.Read More