04 March 2017

Weekend Cooking: Books and Beer

Weekend Cooking: 3 Books for Beer Lovers I'm definitely a wine kind of person, yet sometimes a beer is just the better the choice, and I've had fun exploring different kinds of beer over recent years. Of course enjoying a cold beer on a hot summer day is not the same as having any real knowledge about the different kinds of brews and which ones to serve with which foods. In an effort to school myself, I, naturally, turned to books, both serious and fun.

Here are three such beer books I've been meaning to share with you. One is a good starting point for learning more and the others are for entertaining or just having some fun. Besides showing you the cover of each book, I've also included a scan from between the covers so you can get an idea of what's inside. (Click the images to see them more clearly.)

The Pocket Beer Guide by Stephen Beaumont and Tim Webb

The Pocket Beer Guide by Stephen Beaumont and Tim Webb (Sterling Epicure, 2014). My copy of this beer guide is an ARC dating from 2014, but I still find the book to be plenty useful. The handy paperback covers thousands of beers from around the world. The listings are by country then by region and finally by brewery, and each one includes descriptions of the beer plus a star rating. You'll also find a little bit of information about the brewery itself as well as a few recommendations for local brew pubs. Note that the guide sticks to some of the better-know brewers rather than the small artisan (craft) breweries that are springing up everywhere these days. One complaint is that there's no index. Still, it's a useful reference to take to the store or bar or to slip into your bag when traveling.

Cheese & Beer by Janet Fletcher

Cheese & Beer by Janet Fletcher (Andrews McMeel Publishing, 2013). When I look at this book, I think of hot summer evenings on the deck with friends just as readily as cold winter nights entertaining guests in front of the fireplace. The heart of the book, of course, are recommendations for finding delicious pairings of beer and cheese. The book is organized by type of beer (ales, porters, lagers, pilsners, and more) and for each one, Fletcher provides tasting notes, and other information, recommended beers, and matching cheeses. The lists of beers cover both regional hits and national favorites, and the range of cheeses follow suit. There's enough information so you can easily create your own pairings from local resources. Useful beer and cheese indexes make it a snap to plan your next get-together.

Cookies & Beer by Jonathan Bender

Cookies & Beer by Jonathan Bender (Andrews McMeel Publishing, 2015). This book just says fun, fun, fun to me. Move over cheese and main dishes and make room for cookies! I have to be honest here, I like this book for the beer recommendations and for the fabulous cookie recipes. I'm not overly taken by the idea of inviting friends over for a cookie and beer party. On the other hand, why not? Maybe you could host the perfect Saturday afternoon open house or even a unique adult birthday party. Regardless, you can't go wrong with the solid beer choices and delicious-sounding cookie recipes, with flavors ranging from chocolate to spices, fruits, nuts, and whole grains. Yum!
Weekend Cooking hosted by www.BethFishReads.comWeekend Cooking is open to anyone who has any kind of food-related post to share: Book reviews (novel, nonfiction), cookbook reviews, movie reviews, recipes, random thoughts, gadgets, quotations, photographs, restaurant reviews, travel information, or fun food facts. If your post is even vaguely foodie, feel free to grab the button and link up anytime over the weekend. You do not have to post on the weekend. Please link to your specific post, not your blog's home page.


Libby 3/4/17, 7:31 AM  

Hi Beth! I don't know if you remember me - I used to do Libbysbookblog. I just started a new blog and linked up :) Anyway - I loved your beer post and I am about to re-read it because I am living outside of Cincinnati and Bockfest is going on, and they are giving tours of the old breweries in Over-the-Rhine today. I was thinking of going to a few! It's snowing though and these things are down in old basement tunnels - a hundred years old. These books would really help me up my beer game though, because like you, I am much more of a wine person.

Tina 3/4/17, 7:42 AM  

Your first sentence, yep....that's me. I like wine more but lately, when we think about summer grilling and some foods we have been craving beer is the ticket. That Cheese and Beer guide looks great.

bermudaonion 3/4/17, 7:48 AM  

You grabbed my attention with that title! I actually own the second two books and have used Cheese & Beer on quite a few occasions. I need to check out The Pocket Beer Guide but books like that can be tricky since beer availability is so regional.

Mae Travels 3/4/17, 8:13 AM  

And you didn't even mention how malt does more than Milton can to justify God's ways to man! (From the A. E. Housman poem "Terence, this is stupid stuff" which has quite a bit about beer).

best... mae at maefood.blogspot.com

rhapsodyinbooks 3/4/17, 10:29 AM  

Definitely looks like Kathy's kind of post! :--)

Katherine P 3/4/17, 10:30 AM  

I'm not much of a drinker but these books sound so fun! I'm super curious about the Cookies and Beer book. I'm not sure the combination is for me but I definitely want to see the recipes and recommendations!

Claudia 3/4/17, 10:39 AM  

I'm more of a wine person myself, but there are just certain foods that call for a good beer, and I've recently discovered Guinness Draught and really do like that one. On sale right now, wouldn't you know:)

Deb in Hawaii 3/4/17, 11:13 AM  

I like a beer now and then in the hotter weather especially with spicier foods. Love the idea of the beer and cheese and the beer and cookies pairings. Fun!

Deb Nance at Readerbuzz 3/4/17, 11:34 AM  

Funny. I never drink beer. It's an acquired taste, I think, and beer adds a lot of flavor to food but I have never really liked it the few times I've sampled it.

Jackie McGuinness 3/4/17, 12:02 PM  

Since John's been gluten free in the last year our beer adventures are looking for beers that are not made with wheat or barley. We've become fans of ciders and that was been exciting too.
Thank goodness wine is not an issue!

Mary R. 3/4/17, 3:20 PM  

I would have to say that I am more of a beer person (though I also like wine). If you want to learn about what beer to drink with what food the go-to book (IMHO) is The Brewmaster's Table by Garrett Oliver. (http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/398305.The_Brewmaster_s_Table) It gives you background and history on various kinds of beers and includes a great chart that tells you what style of beer goes with what food.

Greg 3/4/17, 4:36 PM  

Beer and cheese... pretty good combo. :)

Andrea 3/5/17, 8:01 PM  

Any of these books would make for a great gift! Definitely bookmarking them for my husband...

Melynda@Scratch Made Food! 3/5/17, 11:41 PM  

The new interest in beer and pairings with other foods is fun, not only for beer lovers but everyone. Possibly the days of beer or wine are ending. Thanks for showing these books, I think the beer and cheese one would be fun for my husband to read, I will have to take a look at the library.

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