Chicago is one of the nation’s top food destinations, and a craft beer powerhouse. So, it only makes sense that you will eventually want to pair your favorite Chicago foods with your favorite Chicago craft brews. Vice District Brewing Company took the liberty of providing you with a guide to some of Chicago’s most iconic foods and their beer counterparts that will enhance the flavors.
Blonde Ale + Chicago-Style Hot Dog When you bite into a loaded Chicago-style hot dog at the ballpark, Portillo’s or a corner hot dog stand, your mouth is treated to a variety of flavors. How do you pair it with a craft beer? This complex combination of tastes and aromas begs for the mild profile of a blonde ale, as it carries a good balance of sweet and bitter.
Chocolate Stout + Eli’s Cheesecake Easily one of Chicago’s favorite desserts is the strawberry cheesecake from Eli’s Cheesecake. It’s rich and creamy flavors topped with red strawberries make it a great choice to pair with a coffee or chocolate stout or porter. The heavier body of these beers enhance the richness of the cheesecake, and the coffee and chocolate notes are a perfect complement to the fruit flavors.
American Brown Ale + Italian Beef This versatile sandwich can be served dry, wet or dipped and is something Chicagoans can unanimously agree that they love. Now, the challenge is pairing it with your favorite craft beer. To complement the spiciness of the beef, pair it with an American Brown Ale. It’s innate bitterness arises from the semi-hoppy profile, which will echo the spicy notes from the beef.
English Pale Ale + Rainbow Cone This ice cream cone barrages your tastebuds with a variety of flavors, from classic chocolate and orange sherbert to pistachio and strawberry. A palate-cleansing beer will be perfect to pair with the Rainbow Cone. The mild bitterness of an English Pale Ale will sweep the flavors off your palette, clearing the way for the next delicious bite.
Porter + Garrett Popcorn As always, Chicago steps the popcorn snacking up a level with its popular caramel corn and cheese popcorn mix from Garrett Popcorn, known as “The Mix.” To pair this unique combination of cheese and caramel, look for a beer that carries a malt body with caramel notes, like a porter. The subtle, caramel notes will harmonize well with the sweet caramel corn.
The uprising of craft beer has created many unique flavors that cater to a variety of tastes. As a result, finding the perfect combo between your dish and drink is more challenging than ever. If the above pairings don’t catch your eye, you can bring in your own food to enjoy at Vice District, and our staff will happily offer you suggestions to pair your favorite meal with your favorite beer.