The Chefs’ Pairings: Uncommon Siamese Twin Ale and Founders Blushing Monk
Finding the right food pairing for the beer in your glass can be difficult—especially when it comes to releases with special ingredients and diverse flavor profiles. So we asked Chef Todd Winer of Pastoral Restaurant in Boston and Chef Nels Benton of Bill Baker’s in Brooklyn, New York, to dig into two fresh, curious beers and come up with their own pairing ideas.
Uncommon Siamese Twin Ale
Santa Cruz, California
8.5% | Belgian-Style Dubbel w/ Lemongrass
Uncommon Brewers in Santa Cruz is, not surprisingly, known for uncommon additions like toasted poppy seeds, star anise and bacon-smoked pork. This canned offering uses lemongrass, coriander and kaffir lime leaves.
Chef Benton: I’d pair this beer beside mussels with coconut, red curry and lemongrass; aged Kansas City strip au poivre with sautéed black trumpet mushrooms and roasted shallot jus; or crème brûlée with spiced sugar crust.
Chef Winer: Try this one with smoked carrot puree, coffee-steamed mussels or fried baby carrots with ’Nduja sausage.
Founders Blushing Monk
Founders Brewing Co.
Grand Rapids, Michigan
9.2% | Belgian-Style Strong Ale w/Raspberries
After a four-year hiatus, Founders re-released its fruit-forward Blushing Monk. It is brewed with a Belgian yeast strain and “a ridiculous amount of raspberries.”
Chef Winer: First, I would reduce this beer down with pine nuts and marjoram into a beer syrup, then I would poach asparagus in the syrup and wrap the asparagus in bresaola. Serve it with farro and pine nut risotto, with a drizzle of beer reduction on top. This could also be reduced and smoked to make gelato.
Chef Benton: To start, pair this with pan-fried duck pierogi with huckleberry sauce. For a main course, pour a glass alongside Kona-rubbed hickory-smoked baby back ribs with chayote slaw. Finish with baked apple dumplings with caramel and chocolate.