Next to loaves and fishes, beer and cheese are two of the great staples of life and the similarities between beer and cheese go way, way back. We can actually go as far back as the discovery of preserving food… in this case by transforming surplus grain into beer and very fragile milk into the longer-lasting form of cheese.
A second and pretty important similarity is the key process to their respective creation, which of course is through fermentation.
For the uninitiated, to brew beer, simple sugars from grain are converted by yeast into alcohol and carbon dioxide. In cheese, it’s the conversion of milk by a bacterial culture that makes it acidic, turning the milk sugar lactose into lactic acid, blah, blah, blah and so on.
However, the similarities do not end there. The most important similarity is the not the process, but arguably the art of their creation; how grains or milk are chosen and handled, plus the selection and addition of other flavours and of course, their conditioning to create something that from it’s initial and humble origins can become the most wondrous culinary experience.
So it begs the question; with so many similarities, why do we not pair cheese with beer more often?
As someone that probably drinks far too much beer and has a tendency to over indulge when a cheeseboard is placed on the table, I’d like to know a little more beyond unwrapping a Kraft Single to compliment my Carlton Draught.
With the great support and effort of the Fringe Food Festival, we’ve gathered some of Melbourne’s (and possibly, Australia’s) top aficionados and experts on beer, cheese and food matching, who will guide you through the whys and wherefores of matching, as well as take some time to appreciate the care, effort and passion that has gone into the products that we will be sampling on the night.
As a blogger, I am passionate about Melbourne and Victoria’s food culture, particularly at a grass roots level and I am a great supporter of the events that the Fringe Food Festival organise.
I am honoured to be involved in helping to organise this event that will again showcase some of our best local produce and its providores. And I can guarantee that there will be no Kraft Singles involved.