Chocolate has long associations with Easter, not least in the form of Easter eggs. Fry’s produced the first ones in 1873 but once they developed a cocoa butter that could be moulded into shapes, Cadbury’s captured the market. But what about accompanying your egg with some beer?
No, don’t turn your nose up! Chocolate and beer work well together. It does need a bit of thought but using the simple technique of ‘Cut, Complement and Contrast’, you can choose a beer to enhance the enjoyment of that egg – even if you have to steal some from your offspring.
Let’s start with white chocolate. There are two choices: either a complete contrast with a dry, dark beer such as Tap East’s Coffee in the Morning or a highly hopped golden ale such as Twickenham’s Naked Ladies or Redemption’s Big Chief. With the latter, the bitterness cuts through the sweetness of the white chocolate and the fruitiness provides a contrast to the milky character of the white chocolate.
Orange flavoured chocolate provides the perfect complement to Fuller’s ESB, which is full of orange marmalade fruit and sultana notes. The beer’s bitterness also gives some contrast. Another option is Wimbledon’s Quartermaine, a true British style IPA.
Finally, a dark chocolate egg will go well with a beer with a roasty character, so try a porter or stout where the chocolate/coffee notes will complement the dark chocolate. Try it with Five Points Porter, which has a little smoky flavour, particularly when fresh and provides a complexity. London Brewing Company’s 100 Oyster Stout is a nice alternative.
I’m sure it comes as no surprise that beer goes with all sorts of foods – although some are harder to match than others. If you’d like to taste for yourself, I will be holding events again, once our current problems are behind us.