I decided to switch things up a bit this time. Usually when I pair a beer with Mex-American food I immediately go for an IPA. I love the way the hops accentuate the spicy heat in the food.

This time I went with a Pilsner which was a delightful change. Pilsner’s generally have a nice hoppy bite to them, which could still deliver that zing that I love so much. The difference would be the off-flavors created by the yeast in an Ale versus a Lager. An IPA of course being an ale and a Pilsner is of the Lager family. Ales are generally more complex in flavor, due to the notes imparted by the yeast. During it’s long laborious work, the yeast creates off-flavors that are fruity and spicy. These notes generally link well with a lot of foods.

A Pilsner does not possess these notes given the type of yeast used. Lager beers are generally more crisp and “clean” in flavor. Such as the Millstream Pilsner, which was not quite as crisp and “clean” as a Pilsner Urquell but still much “cleaner” than an ale in it’s flavor. There was more of a grain bill with the Millstream it seems. All the characteristics of the Pilsner were great with the Mex-American meal that I prepared. All the wonderful savory and spicy flavors were not in competition with the off-flavors that would be present in an ale. The Pilsner and it’s “clean” flavors linked so well giving the hops the front row to do their work. They marched in and cut the heavy cheese and avacado flavors and intensified the heat in the taco’s. It was terrific.

I believe from now on, I’ll be looking for a Pilsner to drink with my Mex-American meals. Others to try would be Victory Prima Pils, Sly Fox Pils and Pilsner Urquell.

beer + food = Barleydine



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