If you’re a beer drinker who is quite comfortable with their usual brew, but would like to make a foray into wine, this article is for you. Whether you like a dark, rich stout or a crisp, refreshing Pilsner, we have the perfect wines to match your flavor preferences. Here we recommend wines for different types of beer drinkers—read on for our suggestions.
Those choosing an IPA are generally not looking for subtlety. While many more elegant IPAs have hit the market recently, this style tends to be defined by boldness: citrus, herbs, and bitterness dominate. A wine with bold flavors will please the IPA drinker. It may seem like a surprising choice, then, to recommend a light white wine like Sauvignon Blanc, but hear me out: there’s a reason many people love Sauvignon Blanc. Its flavors are apparent, not subtle. Those who love IPAs for their citrusy, herbal hops character will find citrus and herbs in spades in Sauvignon Blanc, and the acidity of Sauvignon Blanc will have a similar palate-cleansing effect to the bitterness if IPAs. That said, if it is just the bitterness you are looking for, try a white wine with phenolic bitterness such as a dry Gewurztraminer or a red wine with plenty of tannin such as a Cabernet Sauvignon.
I love a good stout. Richly textured, chocolatey, dark, often with a smokiness from the roasted malts. One can find all of these flavors in a warm-to-moderate-climate Syrah. Dark fruit and cocoa, along with Syrah’s characteristic smoked meat character—especially when aged—will provide you with the hearty beverage you seek.
Sour beer aficionados will appreciate the flavors of an Italian Nebbiolo; both sour beers and Nebbiolo are strong on the palate—combining acid, tannin, and fruit—and pair this with an incredible textural and aromatic complexity. Plus, Nebbiolo tends to have a sour-cherry flavor that sour beer drinkers will love. Pair either with an earthy game dish.
The Belgian Dubbel style is a full-bodied, high-alcohol, spicy and fruity beer which, through its richness, gives the impression of sweetness. Enter Zinfandel. Zinfandel tends to be a higher-alcohol wine with a rich jammy quality. Due to its richness, Zinfandel is often aged liberally in oak which lends it a spicy, berry pie-like character—one Dubbel drinkers will love, especially if they enjoy the spiciness of a barrel-aged Belgian as well.
Weissbier tends to be a luscious-style beer with a rich, creamy texture and heady aromatics. Viognier wines parallel this magnificently. Viognier has a rich, mouth-coating texture and plenty of peachy, creamy flavor. This is complemented by intense white floral aromatics, sure to please those looking for a sumptuous beverage.
Pilsners are great because they are refreshing and crushable; the kind of beer you want to relax with on a hot day. A Light, sparkling prosecco will accomplish the same! For both Pilsners and proseccos, many are world-class, brilliantly made and complex—but still don’t take themselves so seriously you couldn’t drink them from a plastic cup at an outdoor concert.
There is an old saying in the world of winemaking; it takes a lot of beer to make great wine. Many of the winemakers we know drink just as much beer as they do wine. Why? Because beer is refreshing and many of the craft beers today are just as interesting and complex as wine. That's we encourage wine drinkers to give beer a chance and beer drinkers to sample some great wine.