Rob McFerren: Craft Beer and Pizza  

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Most of us love pizza and there’s probably no better beverage to pair it with than Craft Beer. Craft Beer has a lot of different flavor profiles and with so many different toppings that you can put on a pizza there’s a pairing for almost anything. Here are a few basic pizza and Craft Beer pairings to try out.

The classic cheese pizza pairs well with clean and crisp beers such as an Amber Lager or a great Pilsner.The grain and cheese flavors will balance the hop character and these beers are light on the pallet. If you like pizza with meat toppings try pairing these with hoppy and bitter beers such as Pale Ale, IPA or an American –style Brown Ale. These beers will stand up to the strong flavors and cut through the fat and give a complex finish.

If you’re a mushroom and onion fan try this pizza with a sour or funky beer such as a Brett Ale or a Flanders Ale and the savoriness will be enhanced. With olives and peppers as toppings some dark and roasty beers like Stouts or Porters work very well. The roasted malt flavors of these beers will compliment the oven-roasted vegetables.

On a pizza that’s topped with bacon try beers with fruity and spicy notes such as a German-style Hefeweizen or a Farmhouse Saison. The higher carbonation of these beers will cleanse your pallet of the strongly flavored bacon. If you prefer some heat on your pizza, try malty and sweet beers such as an English-style Brown Ale or again, a German-style Hefeweixen. The sweetness of these beers will help to tame the heat of the chili peppers.

The next time you have pizza seek out some of these beers to pair it with and see how these flavor combinations enhance your pizza experience!

Rob McFerren is the owner of Wolf Creek Restaurant & Brewing Co.

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