Bottoms Up

Beer and wine in the Bay Area and beyond

Beer and Chips for the Super Bowl: Make the chips, buy the beer

By William Brand
Saturday, February 2nd, 2008 at 9:16 pm in Uncategorized.

The Super Bowl’s in a few hours and I can’t think of anything to serve, but potato chips, freshly made potato chips, hot right out of the fryer, a bit of Kosher salt and just the right beer.

But which beer? I didn’t really have a clue, so I asked Lucy Saunders, who has a string of beer and food books to her credit. The latest is “The Best of American Beer & Food: Pairing & Cooking With Craft Beer” (Brewers Publications, $22.95.

Her suggestions are below. But first, those chips, Jenny Slafkosky, our Online Food Editor did an article about making your own potato chips in our food section (Oakland Tribune, Contra Costa Times et al this past Wednesday:

Potato Chips by Mike Lucia“The perfect potato chip doesn’t just crack or crunch, it shatters. Fragments of earthy, almost sweet, salt-kissed potato coat the tongue, the richness of oil lingering.

*While potato chips are a classic Super Bowl snack, they’re often under-appreciated — overshadowed by bowls of chili, tiny hamburgers or cheese-drowned nachos. But with a few innovative dips, serving plain chips (even those from a bag) can be exciting.

“Anything acidic goes well with potatoes,” says Gregoire Jacquet, owner of Gregoire restaurant in Berkeley, which is famous for its potato dishes. “They’re a great template for sauces, you can put anything acidic on them and it works: ketchup, mayonnaise, aioli. We do chile pepper, parmesan cheese, malt and red bell pepper aioli (at the restaurant).

“It’s like cheese and wine, the acidity in wine goes with cheese because it breaks down all the fat. It’s the same principle with potato chips.”

Stir a few cloves of minced garlic into a cup of mayonnaise for a classic Belgian-style dip, or whisk in some wasabi paste and sesame oil and you’ve got an instant, exotic dip. Sprinkle hot chips with dried Italian herbs and parmesan, and serve with warm marinara, or toss with a sizzling chipotle spice mix and dunk into a creamy, caramelized onion and blue cheese dip — the flavors practically sing…READ MORE…

And here are Lucy Saunders’ beer and chips suggestions:

I got a call from Bill Brand of What’s on Tap, the California Craft Beer Newsletter asking for recommendations on beer and potato chip pairings…and here you go:

Barbecue flavored potato chipsBrown ale – sweet and spicy! (My suggestions: Buzzsaw Brown, Deschutes, Downtown Brown, Lost Coast)

Vinegar and salt flavored potato chipsAmerican wheat ale – fruity esters match with tangy vinegar (My suggestions: Sierra Nevada Wheat; Gordon Biersch Hefeweizen)

Dill flavored potato chipsBold craft pilsner – hoppy meets herbal on the palate (My suggestions: Lagunitas Pils, Czechvar– the Czech Republic Budweiser, sold here as Czechvar).

Beer flavored potato chips - India pale ale – because beer chips taste sweet, salty and malty (My suggestions: Anchor Liberty Ale, Racer 5, or Hop Rod Rye, Bear Republic.)

Plain potato chips - Farmhouse ale – in homage to frites, which predate the potato chip by, oh, a few centuries. (My suggestions: Farmhouse Saison 7, Coast Range-Farmhouse;’ Hennepin, Brewery Ommegan. Read more from Lucy Saunders…

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