Year of New Beer (Rnd 1): Smoked Coconut Smithtown Brown, West 6th Brewing (Lexington)

Written By: Dion on 03/30/2017

I've been drinking craft beer for over 20 years. It has only been in the past 4 or 5 years, however, that I've given much thought to beer and food pairings. After all, wine is the sophisticated drink for food, right? Tonight's event at West 6th was an attempt to put that myth to rest, and I must say, it was quite successful in its quest. Seven small plates from seven of Lexington's top culinary artisans were thoughtfully paired with seven different W6th beers, each striving to enhance the other. Each pairing was worthy of discussion, but in all honesty, I only photographed two.

First was the Smoked Coconut version of the Smithtown Brown. Chocolate malt and a definitive coconut on the nose, with both transferring nicely to the tongue. Roasty with traces of sweetness backed by a subtle but effective smoke that seemed to complement the parmesan grits perfectly. Why does the coconut work with this food pairing? I have no earthly idea. But it does, so I'll leave that to the experts and thank them for their judgment.