My Christmas Day Menu

…I’ve noticed that amongst the wave upon wave of Christmas Dinner ideas in magazines, TV shows and Radio that there really isn’t much given over to enjoying beer on Christmas Day. Wine? No problem. Port? Whiskey? Sure. Beer? Er…no, just stick a bottle of Fullers Vintage Ale on the cheeseboard and we’ve got that angle covered.

Or so it seems.

Anyway, let’s do something about that. Where the mass media fail, we bloggers step in. And so it goes – I’ve rounded up a gang of Foodie Beer Geeks and we’ve put a little something together for you. I’ll be linking to their posts as they link throughout the weekend. Also, if you want to join in and put something together, drop me an email and I’ll link it up here.

So – here’s my suggested menu for you to enjoy on Christmas Day; the only rule – all beers must be easily available (we don’t want to stump people at the first hurdle). I’ve also gone for a traditional meal, but an all-Yorkshire affair with the beer, just to give things a bit of a theme. To be clear; this is simply a suggested menu.


Wold Top’s Against The Grain is spritzy, light and full of lime sherbet notes that make it a feather-light thirst-whetter whilst you slave away in the kitchen before eating. 


Prawn Cocktail (Prawns, Marie Rose Sauce on Watercress and Lettuce; served with Wholemeal Bread) with Sam Smith’s Oatmeal Stout

I can’t help it. Although deemed totally naff in some quarters, there’s something about a Prawn Cocktail. It’s the only real salad I’m going to eat all day, anyway! Smith’s smooth, sweet Oatmeal Stout is perfect for this, smoothing out all the jagged edges of Lemon and Marie Rose sauce. 

Main Course

Roast Beef  rubbed with Mustard, Oatmeal and Smoked Bacon Stuffing, Maple-Glazed Carrots and Cauliflower Cheese and Beef-Dripping Roasted Potatoes

Simple flavours and simple combinations. You can’t beat it. With all the sweet, smoky and slightly peppery notes going on in this course, I’m going to opt for Ampleforth Abbey’s Dubbel (7% abv). It’s sweet and suitably boozy and has loads of Black Pepper and Raisin in the body, with a softly oaky finish. It’s complex enough to stand up to all the flavours in the meat and cheese of the meal. Oatmeal and Smoked Bacon Stuffing may sound odd, but it’s deeply savoury flavour and sweet,smoky bacon is wonderful with Beef and Cauliflower Cheese. 


Baked Vanilla Cheesecake with Dark Chocolate Shavings

…is crying out for a sweet, thick chocolate stout. Saltaire’s Triple Chocoholic remains a brilliant example of this, and Ossett’s Treacle Stout has a lovely whack of mollasses-esque roastiness that will be made even smoother with the vanilla and biscuit in the cheesecake.

Ok, so that’s lunch over (and yes, I know I didn’t have Turkey!). Put your feet up, watch some Morcambe and Wise and let dinner settle for a while. After all, there’s a cheese course to come later.

Cheese Course

Harrogate BlueCoverdale, Abbot’s Choice Mature Cheddar, Wensleydale

For blue cheeses, I love darker beers – so Revolutions Clash London Porter would fit the bill here. Theakston’s Old Peculier and Wharfebank’s IPA are juicy and vinous enough to stand up to the Mature Cheddar, with two entirely different flavour profiles. Another old classic, Timothy Taylor’s Landlord would be lovely with the Coverdale, and the light, fresh Pilsner from Hop Studio would sit nicely with the meek Wensleydale.

And that’s it. Kick back and relax with a couple of  bright, aroma-packed bottles of  High Wire from Magic Rock to pep you up before the late film (National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation for me, thanks)

So , that’s my Menu. Here you can check out menus from Phil, Neil, Andy , Mark and Rick. Delicious-looking and sounding every one of them, and I seriously urge you to read all these posts as one – and then get cracking yourself!

We have such great produce in the UK, and such great, great beer, it’s a crying shame that we still suffer from ‘second-class citizen’ syndrome in the mass media. I hope we can provide a free alternative! Let’s bang the drum and shout about beer this Christmas.

Happy Christmas!

About leighgoodstuff

Blog: I'm Leigh Linley; born and bred in Leeds, and writing about it since 2005. TGS exists solely to highlight the great beers that are out there; brewed with passion by Craft Brewers around the World. I also edit the 'Tavern Tales' section of Culture Vulture, which looks at Pubs and Pub Life rather than the beer in the glass.

Posted on 08/12/2012, in Beer and Food and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. That beef sounds divine Leigh, smoked bacon stuffing, who’d a thought it. Hope my food/beer pairings are up to scratch, not my strongest point I’ll openly admit.

    Thanks for organising all this too, great idea

  2. The shrimp cocktail with watercress looks delicious!!! N

  3. I didn’t even think about the refresher whilst cooking. I normally like to be really greedy and treat myself to something a bit special – just for the me in the kitchen. Only problem is that it’s normally a big old stout so can cause a bit of a wobble on the timings. Some great pairings here and especially liking the beef & cauliflower cheese main with the Dubbel. Beef and Belgian all the way.

    • Rick; the odd thing was that the Ampleforth was someting I’d been musing on for a while but it really came to the rescue on this one – it was perfect, if I do say so myself. Give it a try. I’ve always gotta have a drink to hand whilst cooking. Maybe it’s the fact that I spent my formative years watching Keith Floyd!

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