Much has been written about matching food with wine. But what about our national tipple, beer? Despite the growing trend to match beer with food, you’d be hard pushed to find a beer which has actually been brewed to go expressly with food… until now! Highly acclaimed celebrity chef and restaurateur Simon Rimmer has teamed up with legendary award winning family brewers Robinsons to create three very unique bottled beers, specially handcrafted, to go with steak, chicken and curry.
Established chef and broadcaster, Simon Rimmer is well-known and loved for his culinary talents; owning highly successful vegetarian restaurant – Greens – in Manchester and Earle, a modern brassiere in Cheshire, selling over 100,000 copies of his delectable cookbooks, and co-presenting on Channel 4’s ever-popular Sunday Brunch with Tim Lovejoy.
But as Simon launches his fifth cookery book in April, and Sunday Brunch celebrates its first anniversary, Simon is also getting ready to launch his very own beer in collaboration with Robinsons.
“Every bloke wants to create his own perfect pint... I’m the luckiest bloke in the world because I get to create three,” says Simon. “Not only can beer be used as a key ingredient in a wide range of recipes, but it is also a great accompaniment to enjoy alongside our favourite dishes; complementing and bringing out the very best flavours in our food as the world’s best wines do. The subtleties of beer are perfect for complex food matching.”
The beer is being brewed by Robinsons, one of Britain’s most respected independent family-owned brewers, who have been brewing award-winning beers from their Unicorn Brewery based in Stockport for more than 175 years. Robinsons are probably best known for their legendary ‘Old Tom’ strong ale, which has been voted ‘World’s Best Beer’ by the international Beers of the World publication, but in the last 12 months it is authenticity which has been brewing success for the Cheshire family brewers, namely in the form of their newer brands Dizzy Blonde and ‘build a rocket boys!’ beer which they produced in partnership with Manchester band elbow.
Simon says “Robinsons were the ideal partner being so close to Manchester, of excellent reputation, and most importantly an independent family-run brewery who share my passion for beer and food innovation.”
The new beer range is being brewed to Simon’s own specifications after a series of beer tastings at the brewery. Simon sampled a range of Robinsons’ ales to shortlist his preferred style of beer, taste and colour before deciding on three distinctive styles to go perfectly with steak, chicken and curry. Simon Rimmer’s trio range will be aimed at men and women, both as purchasers and drinkers, available in bottle only, and on the back of each bottle there will be a recipe to complement each beer.
John Robinson, Brand Manager at Robinsons Brewery is looking forward to the new product launch: “We are delighted to partner Simon Rimmer – not only does he genuinely enjoy a good pint of cask ale, but his target audience comfortably fit the profile of our core customers. This new range is moving beer into a different arena; and for the first time is designed for the consumer to specifically enjoy with food. This is the perfect platform to exhibit our passion for beer and food matching.”
With more than 360 pubs across Cheshire, Cumbria and north Wales, Derbyshire and the North West, food and beer matching has always been an integral part of the Robinsons concept and they even host an annual ‘Have you got the bottle?’ Chef’s Challenge designed to inspire innovation with beer across their pub estate.
Together, the culinary connoisseur and the unshakable ‘beeroisseurs’ are proving that beer is the new wine and hops are the new grapes.