Recently, I met one of the pioneers in American craft beer, Pete Slosberg – founder of Pete’s Brewing Company and author of Beer for Pete’s Sake. I’ve met Pete before, in Argentina of all places, in 2015. Eight years later, on a bus ride to a beer event, we chat about beer and chocolate (as you do). “Have you ever had chocolate beer,” Pete asked. “Well…yes, chocolate stout and chocolate porter,” I said. “Yes! They’re excellent, aren’t they?”

Apparently, Pete is not only a curious brewer, he’s also founder of Cocoa Pete’s Chocolate Adventures and a believer that beer can be an excellent partner to chocolate. “When brewing, we found that cacao nibs can give great flavour to beer, such as stouts and porters, but you can also use those spent nibs to flavour chocolate bars,” he told me.

Smooth chocolate that melts in your mouth, with a hint of beery bliss. Pete also means that beer chocolate can be fantastic in salads. His simple recipe goes something like this: bitter salad leaves such as rucola, shavings of beer chocolate, some parmesan cheese, balsamic vinegar, and pine nuts for crunchy texture. Sounds pretty good, right?

In the evening, after the beer event, our group had dinner in a taproom. For dessert, chocolate brownie and whipped cream, paired with imperial stout. “Too much chocolate,” I thought before I’d even tried. To my surprise, the brownie was not sweet but made with bitter dark chocolate, and the sweetness was actually elevated by the imperial stout. Yummy!

Pairing beer and chocolate is not new; brewers and beer writers have been doing it for years. And so can you! Try a Belgian Golden Strong Ale with white chocolate, or a Barley Wine with chocolate hazelnut cake, and Imperial Stout is a dream with dark chocolate truffles. Get going and see what’s your favourite combo.

Malin Norman

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