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Mar 10, 2008 01:07 PM

Smoked Beer & Cheese Pairings

I'm looking for a little help in pairing smoked beer with cheese. I'd like to know others experience with that match especially with cheeses that are not smoked themselves.
The beers I have thus far for this event are:

Harpoon Smoked Porter
Stone Smoked Porter
Alaskan Smoked Porter
Left Hand Smoke Jumper

All of your assistance is completely appreciated.

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  1. Stone Smoked Porter is not a smoked beer, like the Alaskan is. Smoked beer is normally made by smoking the malt used to make the beer. In the case of Stone's beer, there's a small amount of peat-smoked Scotch whisky malt as part of the grain bill. Consequently, the smoke flavor is very subtle, and barely discernible.

    For the smokier beers, one cheese I'd suggest looking for is a French cheese called Morbier. It has a layer of ash in it, and it would probably be very nice with a smoked beer.

    1. If you can find Schrenkerla Rauchbier Marzen buy a few. My first experience with it hooked me. VERY, very smokey. You would not want a smoked cheese with it.

      5 Replies
      1. re: niquejim

        I recently had a taste of a Rauchbier and thought Limburger on Rye would be a good match. For the less adventurous, maybe a Swiss or Gouda.

        EAT MORE LIMBURGER! There's only 1 plant in the US making it.

        1. re: DaKing

          Only one plant in the US making Limburger?!? That's tragic

        2. re: niquejim

          You don't want to pair it with a smoked cheese because it would get lost or it would be just be too much smoke all the way around?

          1. re: Chinon00

            I Agree, that is why I wrote "You would not want a smoked cheese with it."

            You need a cheese that will offset the smoke and stand up to it.

          2. re: niquejim

            Yes! It is like drinking bacon. But fabulous. Definitely stay away from the smoked cheeses.

          3. I would go with an aged cheddar...not the Cracker Barrel or Cabot variety...but something real good...Grafton or an aged Gouda from Taylor Farms...great smooth flavor, but not too sharp. Also, try Hirtenkasen, German cheese similar to a Piave Vecchio/Parm Reggiano. Someone mentioned Morbier...I've never had it with a smoked beer so I'm just wondering if the wash rind will alter the flavor of the beer? Let me know how you make out.

            1. You should really add Okocim Palone to your beer line up.
              Neat site too.

              1. This is the information I have gathered thus far including that which was posted here. In terms of cheese, it seems as if I should stay away from smoked cheeses and seek complimentary ones.

                Rosemary Jack

                Finger foods that have ben suggested:

                Ham, sausage, liver pate, trout, salmon.

                Would love to hear some more.

                1 Reply
                1. re: thaichile

                  Check this article out:
                  Beer Advocate is really your best place to start, their new(ish) magazine is pretty good most issues

                  I had some great Drunken Goat cheese w/red wine, but you should go to your nearest great cheese store or Whole Foods and ask, people who love cheese are like people who love beer :D they'll give you more info than you'll ever need.

                  Also, depending on your gathering, you could be cheeky and serve Stone Coast 420 IPA or Hemp Ale from Humboldt Brewing.