Normally I don't worry about pairing a beverage with food because my two beverages of choice, water and unsweet iced tea, go with everything. Almost forgot milk. I'm drinking my weight in milk these days. Nothing suits me better than hormone-free milk with every meal. But there are plenty of folks out there who fret and send themselves into a tizzy trying to perfectly pair beverage to entree.
Now that He Said Beer, She Said Wine (2008) is on bookshelves, those folks can quit worrying and start enjoying life and eating and drinking a bit more. It's a slick book. Lots of colors, lots of photos. Wow.
It's written by Sam Calagione, the beer man, and Marnie Old, the sommelier. They duke it out round after round to prove that beer, or wine, is the best accompaniment to each dish presented in the book. Before they enter the ring, there are pages and pages that introduce the reader to each beverage, it's strengths, and weaknesses. Old deconstructs wine labels and informs the reader about what region is known for what kind of wine, as Calagione does with beer.
The authors then pair their respective beer or wine with cheese, vegetables, sandwiches, pizza and pasta, spicy food, shellfish, regular old fish, poultry, meat, desserts, and fruits. Following that up are specific guidelines for hosting your own wine vs. beer debate at home. It's a fabulous idea and surely great fun.
The only problem I foresee is procuring some of these beers and wines. If you don't live in a very, very urban area, finding the beer varieties Calagione touts, may be difficult. Likewise with the wine selections that Old makes.
Be sure to leave a comment. I'll pick one to send a copy of this book to.