Raleigh, N.C. — On August 18, Brixx in Cameron Village offered a beer and bacon tasting. For only $10.95, guests received a sampling of maple bacon spiced nuts, sriracha bacon, maple and spiced pecan bacon and chocolate-coated bacon along with a flight of four 4-ounce pours from a list of 23 craft beers specifically selected for the Cameron Village location.
After requesting the tasting from my friendly and energetic server Melanie, I asked which beers would best accompany it. She said she’d be right back and quickly returned with Brixx’s assistant manager, Tarver Shelton. Tarver, anticipating that some guests might have difficulty pairing beer with bacon, explained how he created a flight highlighting North Carolina brews that servers could suggest.
Curious, I took his recommendations.
Natty Green’s Lexington Spring IPA (Greensboro) was teamed with the maple bacon spiced nuts. The atypical IPA, brewed with smoked malts and fresh peaches, complemented the sweet, smoky, salty nuts. The beer’s slightly bitter bite and smoky, fruity notes both mimicked and contrasted with the flavors in the nut mix.
Next was Gizmo’s Beekeeper Honey Wheat (Raleigh) and the sriracha bacon. The light, slightly sweet, floral American wheat beer was fantastic and brilliantly cut through the heat of the sriracha.
The maple and spiced pecan bacon was partnered with Wicked Weed’s Pernicious IPA (Asheville). The West coast-style IPA’s piney, hoppy bitterness balanced the sticky sweetness of the bacon.
The chocolate-coated bacon was paired with the Green Man Porter (Asheville). The rich, creamy beer with its coffee notes went well with the N.C. State Fair-worthy chocolate-coated bacon but was equally delicious when tasted with the maple and spiced pecan bacon.
The latter combination had me wishing for a pancake to round out the breakfast flavors.
Overall, it was a fun and tasty event that piqued my interested in Brixx. I’m looking forward to visiting again for a proper dinner.
Brian Adornetto is a food writer, culinary instructor and formally trained chef.