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Wednesday Food: Sugar Beer Bomb

I want to pay tribute to a book I consult every so often.  It’s called He Said Beer, She Said Wine with Sam Calagione (Dogfish Head) and Marnie Old, and compares wine and beer pairings for a variety of foods.

The book does a great job of introducing you to both beverages– production background, a full explanation of styles and regional associations,  what to consider when tasting, and a glossary of basic terms.  They offer eleven food categories– i.e. “cheese,” “spicy food,” fruit dessert”– and six styles (and brands) of beer and wine that would compliment popular dishes.  It’s a great resource for someone just getting interested in pairings (and has helped me out with wine pairings of which I know next to nothing).

What I dislike about the book is the lack of actual recipes offered.  Only twelve recipes are recorded, none of which incorporate beer or wine.  There is also an obnoxious kitsch element as the book is overwhelmed with images and oversized font of the two experts “debating” the merits of their favored beverages.  Such illustrations provide about as much professionalism as a community theatre photo shoot.  Overall, had they taken out the heavy-handed narrative element and replaced it with MORE INFORMATION, well, I’d consult it more than “every so often.”

The final recipe and pairing in the book (pictured) is for chocolate pecan upside-down cake and Calagione’s very own World Wide Stout or Dow’s Late Bottled Vintage Porto.  Both beer and cake are incredibly rich and sweet, but if moderately portioned, deeply satisfying.


May 11, 2011 - Posted by | Wednesday Food


  1. You do wonder what people are thinking when they include things like those “debates” in a reference work. Fie upon them!

    Comment by Adam Kotsko | May 12, 2011

  2. I am a bachelor for one week, and because of Mother’s Day and Passover before that, I have a lot of leftovers to plow through. These include burrata and marscapone, which feel a little too special to eat by myself, but I don’t want the burrata especially to go bad. Can I make a burrata omelet?

    Also: I read somewhere that you can add pureed vegetables like mashed potatoes or cauliflower to mac and cheese to make the overall caloric intake somewhat healthier. I tried this with celery root and it was a bit odd.

    Comment by Josh K-sky | May 12, 2011

  3. Update: an opened container of burrata does not last ten days in the fridge. Not sour, but not yummy.

    Comment by Josh K-sky | May 12, 2011

  4. What cheese did you use in the macaroni celery root? I love those two things, wonder how they can successfully be brought together?

    Comment by ebolden | May 12, 2011

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