The Booze Bin

Eat, Drink and Be Merry on the Craft Beer Train (Food Pairing INFOGRAPHIC)

I admit it. As a beer lover, I have hopped on the craft beer train. (Whoot, whoot!) This train is movin’ at lightning speed, and it’s going places we’ve never been before. It’s a pretty exciting time for those of us who appreciate all the goodness of beer, and an even more exciting time for those of us marketers who work with the beverage industry. I saw it with the announcement of Stone Brewing coming to the East Coast…the momentum, the support, the excitement! I mean, this train can go anywhere, right? The industry is bursting with breweries, meet-up groups, clubs, websites, festivals, awards and more…so, what’s the next stop?

signsI’m calling it. Beer and food pairings will be all the rage nationwide. From five-course dinners to seasonal menus to custom created events, beer-food pairings will be popping up in restaurants, bars, breweries and festivals all over the country. Wine pairings have been around forever, so it’s only natural that craft beer follow in those well-tread footsteps. And while I have seen some beer pairing dinners here and there, I think as the concept explodes, the job of those in the industry will be to make beer-food pairing opportunities accessible, educational and creative.

Find Me

No, I can’t go to a beer pairing dinner at a downtown brewery at 7:00 on a Tuesday night. But I can go to a beer-appetizer pairing happy hour at 5:00 at the bar pairing2down the street on a Friday. Local breweries need to be partnering up with restaurants/bars/chefs (and the like) to develop events at various locations, times, days and price points. As craft beer drinkers are a diverse crowd (check out this humorous look at the 43 Types of Beer Drinkers from our friends at Thrillist), offer options that will appeal to various types of people.

Teach Me

I love beer, and I love food. And I live in the real word. I’m not cooking gourmet meals every night, so I don’t need any fancy food pairings in my normal life. But tasting some cool food-beer combinations would be fun, and then after that, tell me what tastes good with the basics…burgers, chicken, steak…so I’ll know what to fill up my growler with and perhaps order next time I’m out to dinner.


Excite Me

Craft beer drinkers are an experimental group. They love their seasonal brews, new crazy flavors and unique ingredients. The opportunity to pair these beers (think ginger, pumpkin, berries, chocolate, peanut butter, etc.) with dishes that bring out the flavors of both the food and beer, is a pretty cool and exciting experience. So make it fun, funky and tasty.

With the craft beer craze, there are many, many, many flavors of beer. So where does one start? Here is a simple guide to 10 popular beer styles and recommended food pairings to get you going. Of course, the possibilities are endless, and won’t it be fun discovering them?


About Denise Grega:

Denise has more than 20 years of marketing experience, in both agency and corporate worlds. At Padilla, she currently serves as the account manager for the Amtrak/Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation account, and recently served as the advertising and newsletter manager for the Rioja (Wines from Spain) account. She has a Master’s Degree from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism Integrated Marketing Communication program.

8 Comments on “Eat, Drink and Be Merry on the Craft Beer Train (Food Pairing INFOGRAPHIC)

  1.  by  Cameron McPherson

    Right on, Denise! I went to a beer and cheese tasting recently and it rocked my flip flops. So many new craft brews to swish around your tastebuds, and I love it. I hope some of the breweries around town listen to your advice … so we can reap the benefits.

  2.  by  Charlotte

    Dear Denise, I love your poster on Beer and Food Paring. Actually, I would like to buy it for our craft beer shop in the Netherlands, The Hoppy Brothers. How can I order it and how much would it cost?
    Thanks a lot for your quick response! Charlotte

    •  by  Denise

      Hi Charlotte,
      That’s great news…thank you! We actually don’t have a printed version of the infographic However, if you would like to send us your e-mail address (send to, we would be happy to provide you with a high-resolution PDF file of the graphic. You could then send it to your local printer and have copies made. Thank you for sharing!

  3.  by  Elwin

    I love the food match poster – the food icons are perfect, any chance you could tell me where you got them from?

  4.  by  James Lynch

    I love experimenting with beer and food pairings. There isn’t much talk about serving beer with food, which is really too bad because beer has so many different flavors and attributes that can enhance the food you’re eating. This is a fantastic infographic. Very well made and TONS of great info and pairing options. Love it.

  5. Pingback: Food Pairings – Hoperation: Brew Review

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