On March 17th, we’re all a little bit Irish! However, the days of drinking green-dyed beer have come and gone and we’re opting for something a little different this year. While there’s nothing wrong with shamrock-shaped glasses and keg stands, we at Growler USA think Saint Patrick deserves a celebration that’s a little more dignified and delicious. We’ve got an easy (and mouthwatering) way for you to up your game this Saint Patrick’s Day. So, gather your fellow lads and lassies for some Irish-inspired American craft beers paired with our new, inspired menu!
Swap: Green-Dyed Beer for an Irish Ale
Pairs with: Zippin’ Brussels Sprouts
The Irish may be most famous for their stouts, but Irish Ales deserve equal recognition. Light on bitterness but packed with warming malt flavors, the Irish Red Ale continues to win over new and seasoned beer drinkers alike. This style of beer is described as having an approachable hop bitterness, an amber hue, and a candy-like caramel malt sweetness that’s balanced with earthy undertones. Irish Ales also typically clock in at less than 5% ABV, making them the perfect start to your St. Patrick’s Day festivities.
This year try pairing Conway’s Irish Ale by Great Lakes Brewing Co. with our Zippin’ Brussels Sprouts. After all, you’ll need some fuel to continue your day of debauchery. The brightness from the lemon vinaigrette is balanced by the charred flavors from this fried Brussels Sprout dish, making it the perfect complement to the caramel and biscuit-like notes from this tasty brew.
Swap Guinness for a Dry Irish Stout
Pairs with: Brewben
As much as Guinness defines the Dry Irish Stout style, there’s no shortage of American-made Dry Irish Stouts in craft beer’s repertoire. Dry Irish Stouts are typically black in color with a dry-roasted character, coffee aroma, and medium hop bitterness. These beers are often dispensed via nitrogen gas taps that lend to a smooth, creamy finish.
We recommend pairing our traditional Brewben sandwich with Old No. 38 by North Coast Brewing out of California. The roasted barley in this brew stands up to the hearty and rich flavors of this classic corned beef dish. Sláinte!
Swap Irish Whiskey for Bourbon Barrel Aged Stout
Pairs with: Philly Cheesesteak
Ahh, Irish Whiskey! You mesmerize us with your spicy-sweet aroma and nutty, sweet vanilla flavor. As much as we love our Jameson, this year, we’re putting that aside in favor of New Holland’s Dragon’s Milk. Dragon’s Milk is a highly sought-after stout that New Holland Brewery describes as having “a roasty malt character intermingled with deep vanilla tones, all dancing in an oak bath.” Ok, we’re sold.
So now, what to pair with this beauty? How about our new Philly Cheesesteak. The beer’s roasty and toasty character plays nicely with the slow cooked sirloin and sauteed peppers and onions that make up this meal. This is one pairing combination you’ll want to have all year round.
Swap Irish Coffee for Irish Coffee Stout
Pairs with: Sweet Pretzel Bites
What’s not to love about Irish Coffee – it’s the perfect night cap made up of hot coffee, Irish whiskey, sugar, and cream. But when you’re in it for the long haul on St. Patrick’s Day, this night cap might just do you in. That’s why were swapping out a traditional Irish Coffee for its craft beer counterpart, Irish Coffee Stout by Lift Bridge Brewing. This toasty and creamy milk stout is blended with a whiskey barrel aged imperial stout before being finished off with locally sourced cold-pressed, roasted coffee. You don’t have to be Irish, to feel lucky drinking this beer.
Pair this Irish Coffee Stout with one of our newest desserts, Sweet Pretzel Bites. That marriage of sweet and salty is in full effect with this pairing. The vanilla and sweet cream notes from this beer are balanced and amplified by the salty, pretzel bites. It’s the perfect ending to a day dedicated to drinking.