Suggesting wines to pair with that ham we know you are brining right this minute for Easter brunch can be a real
bear pig, in part because there are so many varieties — sugar glazed or savory, dry or wet cured, and prepared in a seemingly infinite variety of ways.
Fortunately, fat + salt = the perfect combination for a wide variety of beers. It's hard to go wrong with an an IPA, sour ale, hefeweizen, lager, or even a porter. Plus, beer promises to both complement your supper table spread and add a bit of verbal fun to the festivities. Which member of your brunch congregation will choose the Devotion ale, and who will go for Redemption on Judgment Day?
Russian River Brewing, Supplication and Redemption
If our supplications are answered in the form of this sour ale fermented with tangy dried cherries aged in Pinot Noir barrels, you can bet we'll be front and center when the church bells ring. This is a high-alcohol beer, so think of it more like a wine, to be sipped slowly while you nibble the choicest sugary bits of fatty crust off the ham. Afterward, you could wash it down with the Santa Rosa brewery's Redemption, a Belgium-style blonde ale, that will make sure any and all Lent fasts have been officially broken.
Available at K & L Wine Merchants.
Alpine Beer Company, Pure Hoppiness
Ya, completely cheese-ball, but this is the only time of year a reference to beer ingredients reminds us of bunnies. And this Alpine Beer brew is a double IPA, so it's super “hoppy.”
Available at Wally's Wine.
This double bock from Paulaner with the righteous name (Salvator means Savior) is a full-bodied nod to the beers German monks brewed for their Lenten fast.
Available at Beverage Warehouse.
Lost Abbey, Devotion and Judgment Day
“Inspired beer for Sinners and Saints Alike” is the Lost Abbey motto. The Devotion ale is on the lighter end of the San Marcus brewery's spectrum, so it's a perfect Easter morning starter beer. Later in the afternoon you can, should you desire, pull out the Judgment Day, a big, bold ale rich with dried fruit — but Squid Ink is going to step aside and leave the Judgment Day proceedings entirely in your hands.
Available at Bevmo.