Beer matching offers food for thought

FOOD matching has become a popular technique for promoting world beer brands, with several major brewers actively promoting their brands for consumption with different styles of cuisine.

Heineken is promoting its Birra Moretti brand as the ideal accompaniment to Italian cuisine, with Krušovice Imperial paired with gourmet meat dishes and sister beer Cerné matched with desserts.
“Consumers in many markets – not just the UK – are rediscovering the pairing of food with super premium/speciality beers, and they are increasingly being perceived as an alternative to wines,” said Audrey Schillings, senior brand manager at Heineken International.
Drinks distributor Morgenrot has also embraced food matching, pairing Affligem Dubbel with richer dishes such as stew and Affligem Blond with white fish. It’s offering to help outlets create their own beer and food menus.
“In today’s competitive environment, licensees have to use everything at their disposal to drive awareness of their venue and sales of the products they sell,” said Graham Archibald, national account director of Morgenrot.
“Beer and food matching is still under-used by the on-trade which is a shame as it provides some fantastic opportunities to increase sales, drive trial and improve the customer service offered.”
Carlsberg UK director of marketing David Scott suggested hosting world beer and food matching evenings as a way of introducing customers to new brands. The brewer has produced its own menu ideas, which include pairing San Miguel with tortillas, Staropramen with beef carpaccio and Poretti with gooseberry crumble or key lime pie.