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Grill local: Beer and backyard party pairings from RBC

It’s grilling season in Western New York, and we’re pretty sure it’s illegal to grill without a beverage nearby. Most of us crack open our favorites when we light up the charcoal, but for the ultimate grilling experience, consider pairing your beers with your picnic table spread. Here are a few ideas for the best local food and Resurgence beer pairings we can find, for a BBQ all of your guests will Buffalove.

1. Sahlen’s or Wardynski’s Hot Dogs with Weber’s Mustard and Bridge Pilsner

If you’re grilling up some dogs in Buffalo and you’re not buying Sahlen’s or Wardynski’s, you’re missing out. Top those suckers with a schmear of Weber’s Mustard to really get the party started. A nice, crisp pilsner is light enough to let the horseradish shine, while complementing that salty meat and char flavor. Go ahead, have two. We don’t judge.

 

2. Spars or Mineo and Sapio’s sausage and Cosmic Truth Session IPA or Blood Orange Saison

Mineo & Sapio Sausage (photo by Sharon Cantillon/The Buffalo News)

We get it. Your outdoor picnic is a marathon, not a sprint. That’s why we recommend Cosmic Truth Session IPA from firing up the grill to watching the sun go down. At 4.3% ABV, you can stay in it for the long haul. Try Cosmic alongside a spicy, full-flavored sausage from Spars or Mineo and Sapio. You’ll love how the beer’s citric acidity plays up the spice, while its light body leaves room for seconds. Not a fan of hops? Try Blood Orange Saison and notice how the funky farmhouse ale and the umami meatiness complement one another.

3. Barrel & Brine pickles with Cucumber Saison

If you haven’t tried Barrel & Brine’s pickles, you’re missing out. RJ Martin’s pickled vegetables have a zestier, more nuanced flavor than the grocery store standards, and taste great on a crudite tray or atop your burgers and links. Our Cucumber Saison is made with fresh local cucumbers, so it’s a natural choice to pair with fermented foods. Notice how this refreshing, slightly funky farmhouse ale accentuates the fresh earthiness of those vegetables and vice versa.

4. Local potato salad with CitMo IPA or Resurgence IPA

It’s not a BBQ without everyone’s favorite creamy, crunchy, carb-y side dish. Really commit to the cause by getting your veggies at your closest farmer’s market (click the link to find your closest one!) We love how CitMo IPA’s hoppy bite cuts the mayo and scrubs your tongue clean for the next bite. Citrus and pine notes provide a perfect contrast to anything starchy, so try this one with your pasta salad too. If you prefer a West Coast-style IPA, try Resurgence IPA for a milder answer to the hop bomb.

5. Strawberry Shortcake with Loganberry Wit

If you’re still buying those giant, white-inside strawberries from the grocery store, you’ve never had a real strawberry. The smaller, candy-like gems from farms like Awald’s Berry Farm in North Collins or Greg’s U-Pick in Clarence will take your shortcake to the next level. Here’s a great recipe! You can pick your own or find them at most farmer’s markets this time of year. Our tart, berrylicious Loganberry Wit is just sweet enough to play off the berries, but tart enough to contrast with rich, crumbly shortcake. Pro tip: Top it with real whipped cream for a decadent treat.

6. Lake Effect or Perry’s Sponge Candy Ice Cream and Sponge Candy Stout

We scream for ice cream! What’s better than sponge candy ice cream? Two (yes, two) local ice creameries make it: The smaller, more artisanal Lake Effect and that freezer aisle standard, Perry’s. Sponge candy ice cream AND beer, of course. Our Sponge Candy Stout is smooth and light enough for a summer get-together. Pairing it with rich, sponge-studded ice cream makes the caramelized sugar flavor really pop. If you’re feeling adventurous, scoop a little ice cream right into your pint for a beer float worthy of any celebration. Can’t find sponge candy flavor? Try vanilla or chocolate or even butter pecan. Experiment – you may discover a new favorite!

Blood Orange Saison, Cosmic Truth Session Ale, and Resurgence IPA are available in cans at your favorite beer store, and the rest of our RBC beers can be purchased in growlers or crowlers at our taproom. Stop by this weekend to get yours! Have you tried a beer and food pairing that really brings the party? Let us know in the comments and we’ll give your ideas a try. Whether you’re grilling out, going to a BBQ, or bringing a four-pack along to the fireworks, have a great Independence Day. Remember to be safe this holiday weekend, and always enjoy responsibly.

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