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Good beer, good food

Finding good wine in a good restaurant is usually not too difficult, but it seems that less consideration is given to matching food with good beer, beyond the usual suspects. Brewpubs can sometimes be an exception, but not necessarily. I like Magnolia, but I think the menu at 21st Amendment is pretty tired. I think that with our international and sometimes spicy cuisines, beer is a much better complement than wine a lot of the time.
I'm wondering if any of you in the Bay Area diners have had the pleasure of well thought out food and beer pairings in restaurants and what your favorites are.

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  1. Have you been to Suppenkuche? I am not a beer fanatic so I don't know that their selection is particularly impressive, but there is a nice variety and the food can be quite good. Like all places, they have strong and weak points, but I've never been disappointed by their weinershnitzel or cold cut plate.

    2 Replies
      1. re: mick

        Man, what a great selection of German beers. The Germans have had centuries to perfect their food and beer combinations, as have the Belgians and Brits, and it's hard to tell which came first, the food or the beer. I have a feeling we might be onto something similar here in the Bay Area, matching our local and international cuisines with emerging American microbrews that are based on European styles.

    1. Luka's Taproom

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      Luka's Taproom
      2221 Broadway, Oakland, CA 94612

      2 Replies
      1. re: tranewreck

        More East Bay beer & good food:

        A Cote has a pretty extensive belgian beer list.

        1. re: oaklandfoodie

          Huh, they sure do, I never noticed that. Their wine list is so great that I never thought to check out the beer list.

          http://acoterestaurant.com/menus/spir... (scroll down)

      2. Refuge in San Carlos has a good selection of Belgian beers, and the world's greatest pastrami. It's worth a trip down the Peninsula, at least once, to check it out...

        1 Reply
        1. re: Rapini

          Refuge's room is very plain (square box bar with booths on one side and a few tables on the street and some flatscreens). The beer selection unfortunately avoids some of my favorites, but is lengthy at the very least (leffe blonde but not dark! come on!). The pastrami is thick-cut and stunningly soft - not overspiced. The rest of the menu looks pretty good, actually - lots of burgers and similar. Fries were great. The price on the pastrami is high but it is very, very good.

          I wouldn't say they have beer pairings. The food's good and the beer's good but it's not a pairings kind of place.

          I'm still going to Martin's West a few more times first. Haggis on a STICK? that's sick.

          1. re: Justin L

            Bar Crudo has a great beer list. My last time there, the waiter was pretty knowledgeable, and we came up with some interesting pairings.

          2. monk's kettle, la trappe

            la trappe however is belgian-oriented in both food and beer