Guest Blog Post: Renée M. DeLuca on Chili and Beer

Renée M. DeLuca is the daughter of pioneer microbrewer Jack McAuliffe, founder of New Albion Brewing. She recently launched the Brewer’s Daughter Marketing & Public Relations Agency, which specializes in promoting the craft brewing industry. Renée lives in Northeast Ohio with her husband, Paul, two teenagers, a 100 lb. yellow lab, two cats, and a refrigerator full of beer. You can follow her on Twitter @brewersdaughter or email her at Here’s her advice on chili and beer.

The Perfect Pair: Chili and Beer
By Renée M. DeLuca

Chili and beer go together like, well, chili and beer! It’s a perfect taste combination. But don’t ruin your wonderful chili recipe that you labored over with that yellow fizzy stuff that’s advertised during every break of every football game. You put love in that pot, and the beer you have with it should love it back. That’s where craft beer comes in. Wonderful, flavorful brew with character. It’s a little more expensive, but it’s more than worth it.

If your chili is the fairly standard spicy beef and bean combination, I highly recommend a bourbon style beer, like Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale. The boozy flavor of the beer offsets the spices and brings the taste profile of the chili to a whole new level.

Got white chicken chili simmering in a pot? How about something hoppy for contrast. Stone Ruination IPA has the hops that’ll do it. Or choose your favorite IPA.

A rich vegetarian chili deserves a toasty brown ale to held meld those flavors. Sierra Nevada’s Tumbler Autumn Brown Ale has notes of brown sugar and toffee and a warm goodness that will bring out the best in your recipe. Another great pairing would be a pumpkin ale–Dogfish Head’s Punkin‘ is deliciously balanced, and not overspiced.

And if you have a little chocolate in your chili recipe, Rogue’s Chocolate Stout is the perfect complement. The flavors of oats, malt and yes, chocolate will have your guests oohing and ahhing over the combination with the chili. You’ll find a number of stouts in your beer speciality store–see which one is your favorite by holding a taste test with your guests.

Aside from drinking these fine brews along side your chili, it never hurts to pour a little into the pot while you’re cooking and sipping. It deepens the flavor of the chili, and makes those pairings really stand out. So cheers to chili and beer!

One Response to Guest Blog Post: Renée M. DeLuca on Chili and Beer

  1. Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale is my favorite beer of the moment and I will certainly take your advice and it to my next pot of chili! Love the blog – it’s making me hungry AND thirsty!

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