Oh, dear--wine pairing for beer-braised chicken tonight?
Tonight's currently-in-the-oven dinner was based on the assumption that our guest was a beer-only kind of guy. Chicken thighs braised a la flamande--in Belgian ale, onions, a touch of mustard, thyme and brown sugar.
Now, I just got a text saying, "no, no, he really likes wine." So...what on earth should we drink?
I'm thinking perhaps an Alsatian Pinot Gris or Riesling with a bit of heft to it; I'm trying to imagine a red pairing and failing miserably.
Personally I wouldn't change the drink options just because he likes wine. Why not open a bottle wine with the appetizers and then finish with a Vin Santo or Ice Wine with dessert?
Otherwise I would probably go with chilled Rose maybe a Sauvignon Blanc.
Harkening back to another thread, have you ever considered the joy of a retro Gallo Hearty Burgundy??
I'd go with either of the Alsatians you list and would also consider an Alsatian Gewurtzraminer. An off-the-beaten track suggestion, Hungarian Furmint (not Tokaj sweet.)For red, maybe a Zinfandel or Dignac from Croatia.
In wines, you just can't miss with a kabinett riesling here. Otherwise chardonnay should be quite nice.
And as for beer... definitely a nice German hefe-weizen or a well-made US wheat microbrew....
Since it's cooked in Belgian Ale you might try a nice Belgian with it... but do you go pale on the drier side (like a pale tripel) or a darker sweeter brew (like Gulden Draak)? Or better one of each so you can experiment with the pairing matches. But matching food with these fuller-flavored beers is always a bit dicey, the matches often aren't as good on the palate as they sound to your ears... whereas wheat beer is so universally food friendly.
Please report back.
I'd just serve the beer -- it's what you'd planned, it's what you prepared the dish with...
he might really like wine, but nobody even hinted that he didn't like beer, from what you've written here.