Spring is upon us and as the flowers start to blossom grills simultaneously fire up for the first time this year. The grass begins to green and we start to slowly move outdoors in hopes of enjoying the warm sunshine after a cold winter.
Midwest Meetings spoke with Angela Yahne, Taproom Manager at Wooden Legs Brewing Company in Brookings, SD to discuss spring and summer beer choices and pairings in celebration of National Beer Day, April 7th, 2016.
Grilling out is a must during the few warm months we get in the Midwest! Whether it's steak, bbq, burgers, or brats you need a beer to stand up to the rich, earthy, even smoky flavors. Angela suggests you “Grab a schwarzbier next time you are grilling burgers or steak. The roasty, chocolate flavors in the beer will match up perfectly. For chicken grab a Saison (Farmhouse Ale). The citrusy, spicy, somewhat peppery brew will scrub your pallet and complement the chicken without overpowering it.”
Last but not least, we cannot forget those sea critters. Fish typically has a delicate flavor so we need a much more delicate beer to avoid overpowering flavors according to our expert. Angela favors a Hefeweizen or a Belgian Witbier due to there “citrusy, highly carbonated characteristics that will tickle your taste buds and mingle marvelously with shrimp and lighter fish like walleye or tilapia.”
For those who are active in outdoor activities or hosting outdoor activities, Angela also gave us insight to some ‘health’ benefits of enjoying a beer during the warmer months. Hiking, canoeing, and other more labor intensive activities we enjoy during the spring and summer can take everything out of you. You may think, “Why would a beer be the correct beverage of choice after activities such as these?” Well, please remember to drink plenty of water, but there is nothing better than cracking a cold one after a long day and as Angela explained “Hefeweizens, Witbiers, and other Wheat Ales are actually packed full of nutrients! Studies have actually shown that wheat containing ales help fight inflammation after intense activities like running or biking.”
And as you head to the lake, Angela suggests that you “Grab a thirst quenching fruit beer!” There is no doubt that there are many of these on the market but she said you want to look for those “made with real fruit and none of this extract business…Certain fruits promote healthy skin and when you're in the sun for long periods your body may need a boost. Blueberries help fight signs of aging skin and are rich in Vitamin C while raspberries contain ellagic acid, an antioxidant that helps prevent red or inflamed skin. Oh! And oranges contain high levels of beta-carotene which protects skin cells from damage and fights signs of aging!”
Now that we’ve helped you work up a thirst and given you ‘healthy’ excuses to enjoy a beer, we hope that as you plan your spring and summer events that your beverage selection will involve flavorful pairings for all your guests to enjoy. Cheers!