Cold Drinks Paired with Summertime Foods

While you're staying hydrated this summer with copious amounts of water to get you through sweltering days, try branching out at lunch or dinner with a beer or glass of wine. These pairings work particularly well with your favorite summer recipes for burgers, ribs and even dessert.

You can't do much better than the classic burger-and-beer pairing. Match perfectly charred beef with a highly aromatic and slightly bitter brown ale. English Brown Ale might be the original type but others may have additions of coffee or nuts and American brown ales are starting to appear in many supermarkets. Try one with Bobby's Green Chile Cheeseburgers.

A hoppy IPA (India Pale Ale) is a light-colored pale ale that's a bit bitterer than a classic pale ale. Some types have hints of biscuit and nutlike flavors, and others are citrusy. Pair an IPA with your favorite barbecue to balance the sweetness of your saucy ribs with the crisp beer, or skip the booze entirely and pair the ribs with a super-sweet tea. Try it with BBQ Ribs.

Sparkling wine will turn a fried chicken meal into a fancy dinner in no time with its bubbles. A sparkling wine can really be called Champagne only if it comes from Champagne, France, but any variety of bubbly will do. If you're not drinking alcohol, a ginger beer is an excellent option. Perfect for Alton's Fried Chicken.

Cool, creamy and super-sweet vanilla milkshakes are a classic frozen favorite. Sure they're great on their own, but they're even better when paired with a blueberry pie. Not feeling so indulgent? Coffee will do just fine. Try it with Blueberry Crumb Pie.

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