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Vegan Beer & Cheese Pairing

Vegan Beer & Cheese Pairing

Written by Oliver Coningham on 17 August 2016 in Food Pairing

Vegans now have access to an exciting and varied range of dairy-free cheese. Most of which are available from the free-from section in supermarket chillers or independent health food shops. From delicious cream cheeses with spring onions or sweet chilli to a spectrum of cheddars ranging mild to smoked. The old adage "I'd love to go vegan, but I can't live without cheese" seems insignificant when faced with so many alternatives.

The principles of matching beer and food - those of contrast, complement and cut - can easily be applied to vegan cheese. Seek to find a balance in the weight and intensity of the beer and vegan cheese pairing. Light pilsners paired with a vegan blue cheese or strong barleywines with a soft vegan cream cheese will not work. Find a beer where the flavours either complement or contrast those of the cheese. Some pairings work better when the flavours are similar, such as a delicate wheat beer with a soft cream cheese. Whereas other pairings are exceptional when the flavours contrast each other such as sweet with salt. Beer's carbonation also allows the bubbles to quickly move the mouth coating flavours away.

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