“Drink beer, eat, make love, and celebrate the good days”

The above is a paraphrasing of an ancient Egyptian creed. Beer and food have gone together for a very long time. It’s only in relatively recent history that beer has been separated from the wider world of food. Beer’s roots go back to the start of civilization and are intimately linked with the move from nomadic to sedentary societies, the domestication of grasses to produce grain and the origins of bread. For a long time beer was also an important farmhouse product in Northern Europe. Fermentation was used to preserve the farm’s grain allowing a food source to be consumed long after harvest. Beer is food, beer goes with food and in the words of our friends Golding’s Freedive ‘beer is love’.
However in post swill New Zealand, beer is often overlooked in the realm of food culture. As our current ‘foodie’ culture was developing, NZ’s two major brewers brewed 2 or 3 similar styles of beer and marketed the brands in a way that emphasised image rather than flavour, aroma and texture. At the same time the wine world was emphasising the wide variety of wines and the ways in which different wines could work with different foods. While the beer world said “It’s our beer round here mate” the wine world was saying “if you don’t like chardonnay, try a sauvignon, and if you don’t like this syrah on its own try it with this salami or with this slow cooked…” It became understood that wine went with food while beer was good after mowing the lawn.
Now with the craft beer revolution in full swing chefs, foodies, the media and of course consumers are all starting to discover how well beer goes with food.
As North End is the result of a partnership between a chef, a restaurateur and a former cheese monger it should come as no surprise that we always have our eye firmly on how our beers will work with food. We have already run some wonderful beer and food matching events and many more will come in the future. We kicked off the year with a Kapiti beer and food degustation dinner where we used our beers and our ‘big brother’ brewery Tuatara’s and matched them with some of the outstanding food that comes out of the Long Beach kitchen. Steak Tartare and Amber was a revelation, as was the mushroom and blue cheese course with our ESB. We have also run a beer and cheese tasting where we used a range of beers and matched them with different cheeses. At our Waikanae launch we had a whole suckling pig.  And who could forget the complimentary food options we provided at our Wellington launch evening. Again Steak Tartare stole the show, this time served wrapped in a nasturtium leaf and seasoned with rocket.
I have a wide and diverse range of beers planned for North End, one thing that will unite them is they will all be food friendly.