There Is A (Boozy) Difference Between Beer And Pub Cheese

What are bar snacks without cheese dips? There is hardly a snack that a gooey tub of cheese dip cannot elevate. We don't need to rave about how holy the combination of nachos and cheese is, or how a side of beer cheese can level up those salty pretzels when you're enjoying a pint of beer at the bar.

On that note, props to whoever decided to combine beer and cheese together. Some also know it as pub cheese, but although they are mostly similar, they aren't the same thing. The boozy difference gives them their distinct character, texture, and flavor profile. As one can easily guess, beer cheese is made by combining soft, spreadable cheese with some kind of beer. Pub cheese, on the other hand, doesn't necessarily have beer in it. Therefore, all beer cheese is pub cheese, but not all pub cheese is beer cheese. For that reason, it's best to be specific while placing your order.

Beer cheese

Beer cheese, also known as "snappy cheese," has become wildly popular over the years. It originated in the unexpected state of Kentucky although there are several other origin stories. As legend goes, a chef named Joe Allman created the recipe and its popularity is credited to his cousin and restaurateur, Johnny Allman. Johnny would serve the cheese in his Kentucky restaurants: The Driftwood Inn, Allman's on the River, and Johnny Allman's. He allegedly lost his restaurant along with the secret beer cheese recipe during a high-stakes card game. George and Gertrude Hall acquired the restaurant after the new owner Carl Johnson died. Soon after that, the couple introduced Hall's Snappy Beer Cheese, and the rest is history.

The traditional recipe of beer cheese calls for sharp cheddar cheese blended with beer, cayenne pepper, and garlic. The choice of beer affects the flavor of the dip. Light beers are mild to taste and won't overpower the cheese. They are best paired with cheddar and other soft and mild cheeses like brie. Dark beers have a stronger taste so they pair well with funky cheeses.

Aside from bar snacks, beer cheese also pairs well with vegetables like carrots, bell peppers, and celery. One can also enjoy it with tacos, sloppy joes, roasted meats, or just bread.

Pub cheese

Pub cheese may or may not contain beer. Some restaurants add other alcoholic beverages like wine to their pub cheeses. Some people like to add ginger ale to their non-alcoholic versions, too. Just like beer cheese, pub cheese is an excellent dip that can be enjoyed with some bread, vegetables, or some of the best charcuterie meats. Non-alcoholic pub cheese can be used as spreads, too.

Pub cheese and regular cheese spreads may seem like the same thing but the difference lies in the addition of alcoholic beverages and composition. Unlike beer cheese, non-alcoholic pub cheese can be made with milder cheeses such as mild cheddar, cream cheese, Colby, provolone, mild gouda, and Monterey Jack since their flavor will not be overpowered by alcohol. Mild cheese is typically mixed with condiments and spices like mustard, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, and pepper.

The best thing about beer and pub cheese is you don't have to go to a pub to enjoy them. They can be easily prepared at home. If you're using beer in your recipe, flatten the beer before whisking it with other ingredients, and enjoy!