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Gastropub in Action: DBGB Kitchen & Bar Steak Frites and a Pale Ale

July 23, 2010

The Glorious Pairing

I’m pretty sure Daniel Boulud’s DBGB Kitchen and Bar needs no introduction for you hip New Yorkers.  If that’s not the case, here is the profile on NYMag.com.  Needless to say, it’s a gastropub, with one of my favorite things, a carefully selected beer list that was quite apparently picked by a beer rock star.  I decided that I would experience a celestial food and beer pairing, for which a place like DBGB Kitchen & Bar was built for.  I also like to keep it classy sometimes and not pair my beers with fast food.First, feast your eyes on the ale portion of their draft list:

  • Porterhouse Irish Red Ale
  • Reissdorf Kolsch
  • Belhaven Scottish Ale
  • McNeill’s Extra Special Bitter
  • Captain Lawrence Freschester Pale Ale
  • Greenflash Brewing West Coast IPA
  • BFM Brasserie Des Franches-Montagnes La Meule (what!?)
  • Ommegang Hennepin
  • Maredsous Brune
  • Brasserie D’Achouffe Houblon Chouffe
  • Brouwerij Palm, Steenbrugge Tripel
  • Stone Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale
  • Two Brother’s Brewing Red Eye Porter

Here is the complete list including the “lager” and “wheat” sections.  My, oh my.  Among the ales, you have the great countries represented, Germany, Belgium, Ireland, England, Switzerland and of course the USA.  So, I decided to just go for the gold, screw eating a light meal, and order the Steak Frites, as pictured above.  What did I decide to drink with the Steak Frites?  Captain Lawrence’s Freschester Pale Ale (BeerAdvocate’s Review)

A Nice Blurry Picture of the Freschester Pale Ale (sigh)

So what made this pairing perfect for me, just an average Joe beer drinker:

  • I, at times, dislike hoppy beers, aka Imperial Pale Ales, and the American Pale Ale is much less hoppier than an IPA
  • The Freschester Pale Ale is a balanced beer (equal flavor of malt and hops) with enough bitterness and carbonation to cleanse the palate between bites of steak, the last thing you want is a lingering beef taste when you sip a beer
  • The bitterness also washes away the fat in the frites (which were obviously fat free, right?)
  • The beer was light and didn’t make me feel like I ate a cow and drank it’s milk too

It’s as simple as the basics of food and beer pairing.  In some situations you want flavors of your beer to be similar to those of your food, like sweet things, and lighter meats.  Other times, you want them to complement each other in some form.

Did I mention I had the Red Eye Porter with their Bing Cherry and Pistachio Tart?  Imagine the coffee/espresso like porter with a nice dessert.  I left a happy Joe.

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