Craft beer from 50-plus breweries and bands like Parquet Courts and Mogwai may take center stage at Octfest 2019, but that doesn’t mean we’ve slacked off in the eats department. On October 19 at the Knockdown Center in Queens, festival-goers will be able to dig into an exclusively curated menu from the culinary wizards over at Mission Chinese Food.
That translates to a menu that's big on the flavor and filled with spice-tinged twists on bar food classics (pro tip: get the mouth-numbing mozzarella sticks). There’s plenty for vegans and vegetarians spread across three stations, along with a few super savory options for dedicated carnivores. Luckily, there will be a full roster of beers, ciders, and even hard kombuchas on tap to help tame the heat. There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to pairings, but here are a few sure-fire combinations.
Woonsocket Dynamite Pork Gravy in a Roll
A fatty cut of meat lashed in a savory black-bean gravy call for something crisp to cut through all that richness. Austin Eastsider’s Brut Super Dry Cider has just the right effervescence to keep palate fatigue at bay.
Cold Sesame Noodles
These chile oil-slicked noodles topped with a mess of imitation krab pair perfectly with the clean, toasty, malty flavor profile of Circa Brewing’s Sterling Helles Lager.
Sweet and Salty Peanut Pancake
While pairing a full-on pastry stout with this grilled paratha drizzled with peanut sauce and condensed milk might induce a toothache, a more subtly sweet beer makes for an excellent pairing. Brouwerij Bosteels’ Tripel Karmeliet is a fruit-forward Belgian tripel with notes of spice and caramel that should hit the spot.
MCF XXX Mozzarella Sticks
Rolled in Mission Chinese Food’s signature XXX spice mix, these tongue-tingling mozzarella sticks demand a beverage that can stand up to all those Sichuan peppercorns. The Hand And Malt Brewing Company’s Hey Honey! is a South Korean spin on a pale ale that can take the heat.
Korean Fried Rice Cakes
Dripping with a spicy-sweet chile-tamarind glaze, these rice cakes are the vegan answer to mozzarella sticks. Pair these pieces of crunchy fried goodness with Cervezas La Virgen's Madrid Lager, an easy-drinking, malty brew from Spain.
These meatless dumplings are a no-brainer, as is Hanging Hill Brewing’s Hills Pils, a clean, classic German-style pilsner that drinks like a dream with damn near anything.