Meet our new blogger: @bakerandthebeerd

Editor's Note: We are excited to bring you a new blog series by our friend Joe Burgers a.k.a. @bakerandthebeerd who will be bringing us his take on our box and his beer-ish thoughts each month. If you're a fan of beer and cheese, this is the blog for you!

May’s Curdbox is all about the sweet and spicy, and I paired this month’s cheeses and treats with two fruited beers to bring out the best of these flavors.

Marieke Chipotle Gouda is a beautiful Wisconsin cheese beer and cheese pairings from May curdboxrobust with the smoky spice of chipotle peppers, and a subtle nutty flavor underneath. This cheese combines perfectly with the Sante candied pecans, creating a rich smoked pecan experience that was a major highlight of this month’s box. Shelburne Farms 6-Month Cheddar brought out the sweet side of the candied pecans with its own buttery flavor and satisfying texture. I paired this trio with Omniscience and Proselytism, a barrel aged wild ale from Jester King Brewery in Austin, TX. This 5.3% abv beer was refermented in an oak foudre with Hill Country strawberries, giving it a beautiful red hue and adding a dry fruit flavor with just a little sweetness to balance the wild ale’s tartness. Chipotle and strawberry were a new combination for me, but the Marieke and pecans were a delicious complement to the beer, bringing our spicy/sweet/smoky/fruity cheese experience full circle. The wild and funky notes from the beer’s mixed-fermentation yeasts and bacteria do wonders to draw out the hidden complexities of the aged cheddar. 

beer and cheese pairings from May curdboxOur flavors and heat level really crank up as we move to the Green Dirt Farms Spicy Chilis, a spreadable sheep’s milk cheese that I slathered over The Matzo Project Chips and pineapple chili pepper fruit paste. The Maui Fruit Jewels Hawaiian Fruit Paste delivers big tropical flavor and spice in a small package, an adventurous companion to the Spicy Chilis spread that brings its own significant heat. I paired this stacked bite with Mezcalita, a fruited Gose from Commonwealth Brewing Company in Virginia Beach, VA. This mezcal margarita-inspired sour ale is made with lime, mango, and a smoked salt that drives home an extravagant cocktail experience in a beer with just 5.3% alcohol. Mango and lime are right at home alongside the spicy pineapple paste, and I never imagined sheep’s milk cheese as a vital part of such an exotic food pairing, but it is perfection. 

As a final note, I recommend pulling most cheeses out of the fridge 20-30 minutes before serving for optimal taste and texture, but this spread is its creamy best a full hour out of the fridge.

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This is a guest post by Joe Burgers.  Joe is a craft beer and food pairing specialist based in Nashville, TN. You can see over 300 beer pairings he’s curated on his Instagram feed, @bakerandthebeerd.

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