Pairing a Pomegranate Wheat

As I made my way around town blending work with relaxation I decided to grab lunch at Santa Barbara Brewing Company (SBBC). Desiring something fruity, sweet, and sour, to compete with the heat of the sunny day, I chose their Chicken Teriyaki Pineapple Sandwich & garlic fries to pair with their Pomegranate Wheat. Of course I couldn’t forget the jalapenos, & once the sandwich was piled high with red onions & chiles the meal was ready to go.

The Beer

The Pomegranate Wheat is a hazy golden brew with an orange-red hue. The malts are bready and have a mild sweetness. Fruity flavors of citrus & pomegranates dominate with the latter providing a tart edge. The high carbonation and sour sensation of the beer have a rinsing quality to any meal and will allow it to work with a wide variety of dishes.

Why?

The “clean flesh” flavor from a white meat like chicken will support the softness of a wheat beer without overpowering it. The pineapple and teriyaki provide a wide spectrum of flavors including sweetness, acidity, & saltiness. With its tart fruity characteristic, SBBC’s Pomegranate Wheat brings similar attributes to the plate and overall enhances the tropical fruit quality of the dish. Wheat beers’ high carbonation can cut the richness of the fries and subside the spiciness of the jalapenos. The squishy center of a french fry compliments the creamy mouthfeel of the wheat malts and brings out a pulp fruit quality in the beer. Similarly, the bun emphasizes the breadiness of the wheat malts. Overall the pairing provides satisfying exotic fruit flavors that compliment the savory qualities from the sandwich & fries.

The Brewery

Located on the bustling street corner of State & Haley, Santa Barbara Brewing Company has been providing locals and tourists with freshly brewed beer since 1995. Within, brick and wood are surrounded by the shine of closely packed fermenters stored on the second floor. Like a child to their tree fort, the brewmaster climbs up & down a metal ladder to reach these shimmering tanks. Serving vessels are lined behind the bar and diners can sit there and order a beer that only needs to move a few feet in order to be served. Large windows in the front let light and sea air rush in while a hallway in the back leads you to a lounge that provides a more sports bar-feel with pool tables and TV’s.

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