Beer Column: Boo-eries embrace Halloween spirit

There’s an art to stocking up on Halloween candy and a technique to raiding your kids’ haul.

It involves beer (for parents, not the kids).

Step one, buy the candy that pairs well with craft beer to make the prospect of having to devour leftovers more adult-like - writes by Wayne Newton is a freelance journalist based in London.

Step two, when raiding the kids’ haul and their rejects, take heart in knowing that there’s a beer for that.

Well, everything except the dreaded Halloween Kisses, a.k.a. filling removers.

In the matter of Halloween candy and beer, Andrew Peters of Forked River Boo-ery in London and I are kindred spirits.

“I’m a big fan of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups,” he wrote in an email. “Already bursting with chocolate and roasty flavours, our Full City Coffee Porter pairs so well with them — it has the body to stand up to the creamy treat, and the dark notes in the beer accentuate the roasted peanut and milk chocolate of the candy.”

Classic candy corn has been around for decades and is the most popular Halloween candy in Michigan according to 10 years of sales data from and No. 2 in New York, which is good enough for me to conclude Southwestern Ontario must also have a thing for this tri-coloured sweet treat.

“I would probably suggest our Amber with mellow creme pumpkins or candy corn,” said Gavin Anderson of Anderson Craft Ales. “They both have some caramelized sugar notes, and the slight hoppy edge to the Amber helps to cut the sweetness.”

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Here are some more ideas for pairing candy and craft beer.

Apple-flavoured suckers and candy:Craft cider, of course. KW Sparkling Dry Cider is big in Waterloo Region. It’s made with apples sourced within 150 kilometres of the cidery. Another option is Nickel Brook Green Apple Pilsner, a beer made with granny smith apples.

Cherry Blossom:Okay, this is from the upper echelon of Halloween candy giveaways, right up there with full-size chocolate bars and cans of pop. But no less than Beau’s themselves suggests pairing a classic Cherry Blossom with the new Tom Green Cherry Stout. “It’s cherry and sweet and just like Tom Green, originally Canadian,” writes Beau’s in an email.

Gummy Bears:Hmm. Railway City’s Witty Traveller, a spice-and-fruit Belgian wit, or Dead Elephant, a fruity-candy bitter IPA. Decisions.

Hot Tamales:Muskoka Mad Tom IPA. The beer’s got aroma of pine and flavours of orange and grapefruit. Bitter and hoppy, give it a go with Hot Tamales or a handful of leftover cinnamon candy. Mad Tom’s now in smaller 355 ml cans in six packs.

Potato chips:Mr. Insurance Man Blonde. Malty and crisp. Bring on the salty snacks.

Pop Rocks: Forked River Hansel and Brett’el. A barrel-aged blonde ale, Hansel and Brett’el and the effervescent bubbles of the candy will make your mouth tingle and provide a tart bite. Available at the Forked River retail store.

Skittles:Reach for a pilsner such as Lake of Bays Switchback.

Snickers:Anderson Brown. “I think the nuts and chocolate would pair with the similaalsor flavours in the Brown,” said brewmaster Anderson.

Tootsie Roll Pops: It’s back to Beau’s All-Natural Tom Green Cherry Stout. Be picky and grab the cherry-flavoured pops for this pairing.

Red Twizzlers: In Fort Collins, Col., they’ve been known to dunk Twizzlers in Odell Friek, a red lambic. Some have been spotted using the Twizzlers as straws. Thinking the same trick might work with Nickel Brook’s new Uncommon Element Brett Pale Ale. Might work, might be sacrilegious.

Rockets: Back to the Forked River retail store for this one. The new Dreamworld Session IPA is a hazy New England-style brew with tropical fruit taste.

Read also more news of London on our site.

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