Backyard Burger Grill-Off
The best craft beer for your burger: It's all part of Houston's ultimatebackyard bash
When CultureMap's first-annual Backyard Burger Grill-Off takes place on Saturday, all the focus will be on the burgers, with both classic and unexpected versions being grilled live on-site by chefs from great restaurants like Vic & Anthony's, The Grove, Original Ninfa's on Navigation, Roots Bistro and many more.
But it's not a true grill-out without some quality suds, so we've also got some of Houston's finest craft breweries on hand to give out some of their most popular brews along with some seasonal beers and even one brand-spanking-new flavor.
Which craft beer should you quaff with your burgers? The correct answer is "all of them," but we asked each brewery to tell us why their beers (and ciders) are the perfect pair for a outdoor burger grill-off.
Check out what they said, and then taste them for yourself on Sept. 22.
Endeavour is great with something spicy or really bold because of the big malt and hop flavors.
Santo is a great, dark yet lighter beer. Dark in color, lighter bodied. Perfect for drinking all day with a burger.
Oktoberfest is rich and malty and would go great with a barbecue burger or something like that. Something with a little sweetness would work well.
With Smoke on the Bayou, we set out to brew a beer that could only ever be brewed in Houston, something that couldn’t be replicated anywhere else on the planet, even in a laboratory. This would be our spin on Octoberfest beers. So we smoked our malt in the smokers at Beaver’s, Goode Company and Rockwell’s Tavern up in Cypress, and we blended those malts as the base for a nine percent strong scotch ale . . . I’m super excited to bring it to the Grill-Off because it dovetails with the premise of the event so beautifully: Smoke, barbecue & savory flavors that celebrate Houston.
And of course we’ll have 1836, which is a malt-forward copper ale that pairs beautifully with burgers because the victory malts provide a bready, biscuity flavor designed to pair perfectly with red meat.
Weisse Versa is a hybrid between a German hefeweizen and a Belgian White. Refreshing with banana and citrus notes, Weisse Versa is perfect for the Houston heat.
Hopadillo IPA is an India Pale Ale brewed with six different hop varieties. Strong citrus aromas on the nose, Hopadillo delivers a nice assertive bitterness that will pair nicely with any burger!
Leprechaun Hard Ciders pair amazing with all burger options. Leprechaun Dry Cider gives a wonderful mouth cleansing affect with a hint of sweetness, giving juicy burgers with sharp cheddars and tangy or sweet sauces such as BBQ or chipotle mayo that extra zing. While the sweetness of the Leprechaun Golden Cider magnifies drier cheeses such as Swiss cheese as well as tasty condiments like red onions and tomatoes for that wonderful, mouth-watering effect. Both ciders pair with all backyard grilled foods superbly due to its sweetness but perfectly balanced acidity. Don't forget — you can use it for cooking as well!!
We will have El Hefe, Ridgeback Amber Ale and Pale Horse Pale Ale. Our Ridgeback is very malty and will contrast well with a burger. Our Pale Horse is very hoppy and would bring out the flavors of a burger nicely. Our El Hefe is such a good beer to pair with most foods with its orange/citrus flavors. A lighter burger would go nicely with this beer.
BombShell Blonde Ale is a great summer beer that is medium bodied with a nice creaminess with just enough hops to balance out the beer and lend refreshing hints of lemon grass making this a prefect beer for warm evenings.
Both PineBelt Pale Ale and ProAm Double IPA (2012) have an aggressive hop profile perfect for cutting through the heavy coating mouthful of hamburgers — especially cheeseburgers. Look for the citrus flavors of the hops in both of these beers to complement the smoky richness of the fresh grilled beers.
Are you looking forward to tasting these new and seasonal brews? Which beer is your favorite?
For tickets and more information on the Backyard Burger Grill-Off, click here.