Chances are you'll be looking to grab a frosty beverage somewhere in the next two days as the weekend kicks into gear and the 80-degree weather returns. With so many local restaurants featuring craft beers, you can bet they've got the eats to go along with them, and we're not just talking your standard burgers and wings. As Charleston Craft Beer week wraps up, it's a great excuse check out what local restaurants are serving up alongside their usual menu staples.
Let's start with some mussels, shall we? Closed for Business tops theirs with bacon, shallots, garlic, aioli, and a heap of golden french fries, sating every craving at the table ($10). The mussels themselves are soaked in Bavik beer, a Belgian Pilsner, and pair well with a refreshing Allagash White, a staple among the bar's many rotating taps. Another staple at CFB is the Pork Slap sandwich, a fried pork cutlet with house-smoked ham, Swiss cheese, green tomato chutney and mustard seed mayo piled onto a challah bun ($10). The heavier sandwich pairs well with a Bear Republic Racer, a crisp and hoppy IPA.
Allagash White is also on tap at Eurasia Café and Wine Bar in Mt. Pleasant this week. "It goes perfectly with our tuna sashimi," says manager Nick. The seared bigeye tuna sashimi is served with wakama, sushi rice, sesame-soy rice, and a citrus- ginger sauce ($11). The crisp coriander and orange peel in the Allagash White lend a perfect complement to the Thai heat of the sashimi.
Not your average basket of wings and celery — the folks at Carolina's take appetizers up a notch with their grilled Manchester Farms Quail dish ($14). Served with Carolina gold rice, collard greens, and pan jus, the quail pairs nicely with a Sierra Nevada IPA. Manager Todd Johnson also suggests the grilled Tommy Edwards Shrimp appetizer ($12), because there's nothing like peel n' eat shrimp and a cold beer. The local heads-on shrimp are grilled and seasoned, served with romesco sauce, and pair well with a Harpoon IPA.
Over at Coleman Public House, they have an entire tap-room devoted to high quality import and craft beers, and they've got all the eats to go with. Take the San Franciscan flatbread, a thin crust of dough loaded with grilled chicken, pecan-smoked bacon, blue cheese, tomato, scallions, and an avocado lime sauce ($10.95). Bartender Kristin suggests pairing the house-grilled flatbread with Belgian witbier Blanche Be Bruxelles. Fish n' Chips ($14.95) is something that always calls for a beer. The basket of beer-battered haddock, house-cut fries, homemade tartar sauce, and malt vinegar pairs perfectly with an IPA like Bells Two Hearted. For a lighter option, try the fresh roasted beet salad served on a bed of arugula with warm pecan-encrusted goat cheese, baby green beans, and a maple vinaigrette ($8.95). Wash it all down with a Leffe Blonde for a filling meal.
Triangle Char & Bar may be best known for its ever-changing list of craft beers and 100 percent grass-fed burgers, but the burger joint is a veritable taco spot as well, and there's a brew to go with every tortilla-wrapped bite. Try the mahi mahi tacos stuffed with cole slaw, tomatoes, and scallions, served with salsa verde and chipotle sour cream on the side to let you amp up the heat on your own terms ($10). The refreshing tacos pair well with a Sweetwater 420 or Samuel Adams Summer Ale. For something on the sweet side, try the smoked pork loin tacos accompanied by caramelized onions, glazed peaches, fontina cheese, and mixed greens ($9). Sip on an RJ Rocker's Son of a Peach to enhance the peach flavor of the pork as you go. All tacos are served with your choice of house-cut fries or sweet potato fries.