Beer & food

Eight Degrees Brewing - Knockmealdown Porter Brownies from

Knockmealdown Porter Brownies

Why match beer and food?

Wine and food? Nah! That pairing has had its day. Now it’s all about putting beer, specifically tasty Irish craft beer, with food.

Beer is a very versatile accompaniment, offering a range of flavours that work perfectly with lots of different foods. Good matches are all about balance so be careful not to overpower either component.

Matching can be about contrasting flavours – the zippy, citrus notes of Howling Gale Ale point up the sweetness of caramelized onion or roast garlic. Or try a complementary pairing: the sweetness of lamb works well with the caramel flavours in Sunburnt Irish Red.

The different flavour components of beer can also be utilised in matches. For example, the bitterness of the hops can cut through fat to allow flavour shine, while nutty malts can complement roasted meats. Even carbonation has an important role to play, cleaning the palate with each sip and allowing you to really appreciate what you are eating and drinking.

You can also use all those glorious flavours in cooking and baking. Try Knockmealdown Porter in a Chocolate Potato Cake or even some Sunburnt Irish Red and Elderflower Ice Pops.

Barefoot Bohemian Pilsner Lager ABV 4%
Tasting notes: It has a subtle biscuit malt base balanced by a generous lashing of Czech hops giving a nice hop brightness and peppery, spicy aroma from the Saaz hops. It has been aged in conditioning tanks and filtered to give a nice crisp finish. Like always: no chemicals, additives and preservatives.This is a clear, pale golden colour. This is light on the palate, clean and delicate, but with plenty of sophisticated flavour. There’s enough bitterness to make it interesting, and a little spiciness from the hops.

With food: amazing with pizza and able to cutting through the melted mozzarella, snappy bitterness really good with the sweetness of shellfish, sharp and dry enough to drink as an aperitif in champagne flutes with a half-dozen Irish oysters or have a glass with some savoury home-popped popcorn. Good with Vietnamese/Thai spices, hop notes play with cumin and coriander in Mexican dishes, stands up to oily fish like mackerel, salmon, Irish caviar, the fat of ham. Avoid delicate fish or a beefy winter stew.

In food: pizza dough, to make an exceptionally tasty flatbread, extra light waffles.

Howling Gale Ale ABV 5%
Tasting notes: Like blitzing down the Ballyhouras on your bike with an icy wind in your face, this delivers a refreshing crisp smack around the gills. Howling Gale is a refreshing pale ale hopped with American Chinook, Amarillo and Centennial hops. Characterised by a moderate hop bitterness, balanced with slightly biscuit and caramel pale malt body, it has a pleasant grapefruit and citrus aroma.

With food: Fresh and crisp, with moderate bitterness, this ale makes sure that spicy or fried food never becomes palate-clogging. Pale Ales are traditionally seen a great foil for spicy food – there’s a little bit of sweetness there that will cut the chilli burn – but don’t miss the chance to have Howling Gale with fish and chips (or in the batter for the fish!). It’s well worth trying with a Cashel Blue and Broccoli Gratin, the bright citrus notes act like a squeeze of lemon with smoked salmon or pair it with semi-soft, washed rind cheeses like Milleens, Durrus and Gubbeen. It has a similar flavour profile to New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc and can be paired with many of the same foods: fish, seafood, summer salads, chicken or anything off the barbeque.

In food: It is important to remember that cooking with beer concentrates flavour so be careful not to reduce this hoppy ale too much as the bitterness may become overpowering. Used judiciously, it can add flavour to the broth used to cook mussels, is delicious in a chicken and ale pie and adds piquancy to roast garlic mashed potatoes.

Sunburnt Irish Red ABV 5%
Tasting notes: Like an Irishman on holiday in the Canaries, this beer has a red tint and a chilled out, mellow feel. Sunburnt Irish Red takes the characteristic sweet caramel malt and burnt barley of an Irish red ale and adds additional malt complexity by using six different malts. The malt body is counterbalanced with Australian and New Zealand hops, adding a modern twist to the traditional style.

With food: Serve with a cheese and charcuterie platter: mature cheddar cheese (like Hegarty’s), Gubbeen salami and chorizo, fresh crusty bread, crisp apples and dried figs.There are enough hops here to stand up to the sharp cheese and cut through the richness of the cured sausage. The sweetness of the figs also complements the caramel notes of the beer. Buttery, rich cheeses, whether it has a bloomy rind – eg Cooleeney Farmhouse Cheese, Wicklow Baun – or a washed rind like Cais Rua work well here, the carbonation in the ale effectively cleaning the palate between each bite. Lamb – sweet and ever so slightly fatty – is also a good pairing. Match with a traditional Irish stew or make some lamb burgers, with lots of rosemary, and let the Sunburnt Irish Red shine through.

In food: This is a good beer to use in a Cheese and Herb Beer Bread, the sweetness going well with a well-flavoured mature farmhouse cheddar cheese like Hegarty’s, Coolattin or Mount Callan. It’s also good used as the liquid in a simple cheese fondue or for adding a little sweetness to the gravy for a spicy sausage and mash combination. Use as a braising liquid for slow-cooked pork shoulder, add to a venison stew or try those ice pops.

Eight Degrees Brewing - Sunburnt Irish Red and Elderflower Ice Pops (1)

Sunburnt Irish Red and Elderflower Ice Pops

Knockmealdown Porter ABV 5%
Tasting notes: Like tackling the Knockmealdowns in a blizzard, this beer is not for wimps. Our evolution of the traditional Irish stout, it resembles a Victorian-era Irish porter and provides complex dark malt characteristics with distinctive espresso flavours. Without the weight of a stout, the porter is well rounded with mellow English hops.

With food: When the weather is cold, a traditional beef and stout stew is always a winner. For something completely different, hold the porter for the sweeter end of the meal; just make sure you keep the sugar content of the beer balanced with the pudding. Bold chocolate and espresso flavours make it good accompaniment to a dense, but not over-sweet, chocolate cake or contrast the sweetness of the porter with the saltiness of blue cheese and oatcakes.

In food: Reduced, the porter makes a great base for a complex caramel sauce, which can be served as it is or incorporated into truffles or ice cream. It can be baked into bread – a wholemeal loaf incorporating blue cheese is good – makes lovely dense brownies and is great in a cocoa-based chocolate cake. It is also a good beer to use in a chunky Mexican chilli, making the beef taste that bit beefier.

Recipes on
Knockmealdown Porter Brownies
Caramel Ale Sauce
Cheddar and Chive Sunburnt Irish Red Beer Bread

Epic Chocolate, Porter and Potato Cake
Sunburnt Irish Red and Elderflower Ice Pops
Spiced Chocolate Ale Cake
Knockmealdown Porter Cake

From Bord Bia
Farmhouse Cheese and Craft Beer Pairing

Epic Chocolate, Porter and Potato Cake

Epic Chocolate, Porter and Potato Cake


Real Irish beer in the UK for St Patrick’s Day

Check out some of our real Irish beer in the UK for St Patrick’s Day with Ireland Craft Beers. Here are a few spots where you can find drinks like our Full Irish IPA and Wayfarer Sour IPA: Six Degrees North BeerDock Crewe Beer Asylum Mason & Company The BirdCage N16 Draft House Tower Bridge Six Yard Box London Beer Lab There’s also rather a fantastic event taking place in the Tate Modern Museum – it’s a Tap Takeover x St Patrick’s Day Irish Beer & Spirits at the Tate Modern Terrace Bar, 17 March from 6pm. Sunburnt Irish Red will be on tap there, along with offerings from Metalman, Kinnegar, White Hag and Porterhouse. Tickets from £10 includes 5 thirds of beer – try each of the tap takeover beers + complimentary samples of Dingle gin & vodka Book Location Tate Modern Terrace Bar (enter from Sumner Street) @TateEats #TateBeer #TateModern #TateTapTakeover We’re trying to keep up with all the different happenings on Facebook – there’s also the Sláinte! Irish Beer Festival happening in Cardiff – so check out our events calendar    

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Double Chocolate Knockmealdown Irish Stout Brownies

This is a recipe that Caroline – aka Ms Eight Degrees Brewing Marketing, aka Bibliocook – developed with the first ever batch of Knockmealdown Irish Stout back in 2011. Since then she’s baked these Double Chocolate Knockmealdown Irish Stout Brownies for demos, for food and beer pairing evenings and delivered countless trays of them to the brewery. They never last long. You’ll find lots of other baking with beer recipes at Bibliocook: 10 best baking with beer recipes. Double Chocolate Knockmealdown Stout Brownies This is the base recipe but these brownies can be customised any way you want. Most popular baked-on toppings include: a scattering of oreo-type cookies; a peanut butter cheesecake topping swirled through; butterscotch and pretzels; with salted red ale caramel drizzles. So much to play with! Makes 30 brownies. 100g plain flour 50g cocoa 1/4 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 150g dark chocolate 175g butter 200g caster sugar 2 eggs 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 250mls Knockmealdown stout Preheat the oven to 180°C (160°C fanbake). Line a rectangular 2 x 25 x 30cm Swiss roll tin with greaseproof paper. Sift the flour, cocoa, salt and baking powder together and set to one side. Gently melt the chocolate and butter together in a large saucepan over a low heat. Take it off the cooker and add the sugar, whisking until smooth. Allow to cool slightly, then whisk in the eggs, vanilla, porter and, finally, the sifted dry ingredients until just blended. Pour into the prepared tin – this is a very runny mixture – and bake in the preheated oven for 18-20 minutes until set and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Because of the amount of liquid used, you don’t need to underbake these brownies. Cool in the tin then cut into 30 pieces […]

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Silver medal for The Full Irish at 2017 Dublin Beer Cup

Brewed to showcase the best of Irish malted barley, the Full Irish Single Malt IPA is a beer that’s very close to our hearts. We were delighted to have it acknowledged at the 2017 Dublin Beer Cup, when it won a lovely, heavy silver medal. It also gave *some people* a chance to pull out the photo that we took to launch it, way way back in 2014 (still makes me smile too!). Find the tasting notes for The Full Irish Single Malt IPA here. <blockquoteclass=”twitter-tweet” data-lang=”en”> Silver for @8degreesbrewing Full Irish! Congrats! 😊 — Dorothy (@DubBeerGirl) February 23, 2017

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Best IPA for Howling Gale Irish Ale from Molloy’s Liquor Stores

Delighted that Howling Gale Irish Ale was voted best IPA by customers at Molloy’s Liquor Stores in their craft beer awards. Dan, one of our brewers, was on hand at the recent Alltech International Craft Brews & Food Fair, to accept the award, which is now proudly displayed at the brewery. Howling Gale Irish Ale was the first beer that we ever brewed, back in 2011, and it’s been a real favourite ever since. One of the classics!

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Limited edition: Retribution Black Rye IPA

Retribution Black Rye IPA is a special collaboration brew with Spike Buckowski from Terrapin Beer Company. Spike came to Cork in February to brew beer. En route to Mitchelstown, we took a detour to a little spot that he shares a name with, Spike Island. The reason was obvious, but the reaction less so. At one stage, Spike Island was a holding place for convicts awaiting transportation to Australia. It was also used as a staging post for the British on their way to put an end to what they called the American Revolution – what Spike calls the American War of Independence. Inspired by Spike Island, we brewed something black, bitter and angry. It has rye, because Spike insists that every beer should have rye. It has patriotic hops like Cascade, Citra and Amarillo. We then dry hopped it until the hops wouldn’t fit in the fermenter anymore. Here’s to Retribution. Style: Black Rye IPA Malt: Irish pale malt, Rye malt, Carafa III, Cararye Hops: Cascade, Citra, Amarillo, Simcoe, dry hopped with Mandarina Bavaria and Mosiac Strength: 6.2% ABV Bitterness: 71 IBUs Tasting notes Colour/appearance: black in the glass with a foamy light tan head. Aroma: herbal notes with a sweet, fruity toffee melon aroma. Flavour: up front fruit flavours – melon, strawberry, passion fruit – with a round, sweet medium body. A hit of black pepper and spice. Aftertaste: roasted, toasted malt with pepper and a long, dry finish. Food pairings: this is a full flavoured beer which needs some solid flavours to play against. Because of the solid malt base, it’s a good beer to use with – or in – a slow-braising situation. A long cooked shin of beef with prunes would be a good pairing or you could use it to quench the spicy fires of […]

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Nomad IPL takes RateBeer Bronze Award

Our Nomad India Pale Lager? Just came in at number 12 for being Best by Style in RateBeer’s Top Beers in the World 2016. The category was pale lager and we were delighted to see that Nomad IPL took bronze in this award which is judged by drinkers all around the world Here’s what RateBeer had to say: The following beers are awarded for their outstanding performance within a beer style category or super style category within which is a grouping of similar or related beer styles. The whole set of reviews, millions, along with a particular emphasis on performance in the last year, was used to determine our winners. We recognize the hard work and consistency that goes into making these styles traditionally, and in new brewing traditions, fine appreciation and precision. This is truly all about showcasing an array of the world’s finest brewers. This is the 15th year of the RateBeer Best awards. They take into consideration reviews that have been given on more than 470,000 beers around the world to pick the year’s best beers, brewers and beer retailers. More information on Nomad India Pale Lager. Find us on RateBeer here: Eight Degrees Brewing

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EDB at Alltech International Craft Brews & Food Fair

We’re heading to the Alltech International Craft Brews & Food Fair tomorrow, Thursday 22 February, in Dublin’s Convention Centre and will be there until Saturday night, 24 February.   Come visit us – we’ll be launching our newest beer #TransPacificIPA! Also pouring: #BanditSmokedAle #WayfarerSourIPA #BarefootBohemianPils #FullIrishIPA   The boys were talking to Alltech about their plans for the future – and for dancing at the festival. That’s my translation of “music to appreciate beer by,” anyway! More here: Meet the Brewery – Eight Degrees Brewing Buy your tickets online here:

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WIN! A case of Trans-Pacific New World IPA

Congratulations to our winner, JamesR! Scroll down to see his entry – he was decided to be the winner after a long, intense judging process (over dinner and beers) by our Kiwi and Aussie. It made them sing. And not in a good way. *** It’s been raining for days and we need something to cheer us up! Next week we’ll be bottling our latest beer, Trans-Pacific New World IPA, and we’re in the mood to send a case of it to someone who gives us a laugh. All you have to do is to Tweet/FB/Instagram us (we’re not fussy) with a pic of your with your EDB beer – tag it with #EightDegreesFUN – and the one that makes us laugh the most is the winner. Bear in mind, the Kiwi and Aussie will have the deciding vote and they have a rather, shall we say, sideways sense of humour… *** The winner will be sent a case of 24 x 330ml bottles of our Trans-Pacific New World IPA, hot off the bottling line next week so they will get to be one of the first people to taste it. (After me, that is. I’ve already written the tasting notes!) Just to let you know, we can only send the box of beer within the Republic of Ireland. More information on Trans-Pacific New World IPA. CLOSING DATE: TUESDAY 21 FEBRUARY AT 6PM Some favourites so far: [View the story “WIN! A case of beer with #EightDegreesFUN” on Storify]

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Feb 2017: Limited Edition: Trans-Pacific New World IPA

  This anti-protectionist IPA is all about thinking outside of country borders. Aussie hops, like the people, are a bit brash and rough around the edges. We’ve taken two of their stars – Ella and Vic Secret – and overlaid them with the wonderfully smooth, floral American Citra hop to create a beer that is so much more than the sum of its parts. The result is a juicy sessionable IPA that will blow away the narrow minded rhetoric. Short description: New World hops – tropical fruit – bitter citrus Style: New World IPA Hops: Ella, Vic Secret, Citra. Dry hopped with Ella. Malt: two row Irish malt, Carapils, Munich. Strength: 5% ABV Bitterness: 62 IBUs Tasting notes Colour/appearance: dark yellow in the glass, white head. Aroma: full on juicy tropical fruit aromas with masses of sweet pineapple. Flavour: It may be bitter and there’s nothing subtle about this beer but it’s not overbearing. Up front passionfruit and pineapple flavours with a smack of bitter citrus at the end. Aftertaste: light body, bitter in finish. Leaves you wanting more. Food pairings: bitter and quaffable, this is the kind of beer that will cut through rich food, like a slow cooked brisket or a sweet-salty-sticky pineapple and mustard glazed ham. Think Indian as well, specifically a creamy korma or buttery chicken makhini. The tropical fruit will compliment the flavours in a spiced carrot cake (don’t forget the cream cheese frosting!) and cut through all the funk in a intense cheese like Bellingham Blue.   First released: February 2017. Serving temperature: 8 degrees Celsius Availability: 330ml bottles and draught (30L and 50L kegs) Get social:  #TransPacificIPA

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Job opportunity – Eight Degrees wants YOU!

Eight Degrees Brewing, located in Mitchelstown, Co Cork, is one of the leading craft breweries in Ireland, known for brewing an ambitious range of award winning, adventurous beers. We are looking to expand our team by employing a South West Marketing and Sales Rep. The sales rep will be responsible for attracting new customers to continue growing Eight Degrees Brewing’s presence throughout the South West, across draught and bottle formats, to pubs, off-licences, restaurants and supermarkets. They will also be responsible for working with our fantastic existing customers. Ideally the candidate will have some experience in sales and marketing. But, even more importantly, the candidate will require a strong work ethic, a passion for craft beer, and an ability to build relationships with customers. A clean drivers license is also essential. This is a full time role and will also involve some evening and weekend work at in-store promotions and beer festivals. Remuneration will comprise of base salary, commission based on percentage of sales and will included a company van and phone. Responsibilities include – but are not limited to! attracting new customers building sales with existing customers meeting sales objectives setting up and working at beer festivals and events quality assurance eg line cleaning for pubs promotional activities eg in-store tastings staff education To apply, please send your CV to by Friday 17 February 2017.

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#CraftDrinksBill: An Open Letter

Last week Alan Kelly, Labour spokesperson on Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, launched a Bill that proposes amending the law to allow breweries, distilleries and cider producers sell their products to visitors on their premises. This will have significant implications for tourism throughout Ireland by removing a major regulatory barrier for breweries, microbreweries, cider makers and distilleries. Like us, many of these producers are based in beautiful rural areas that tourists often bypass. We want to give them the opportunity to stop off in Mitchelstown, come to the brewery for a tour – then stay, eat and drink locally. But none of this can happen unless our politicians know that we’re behind it! This is the letter, drafted up by the ICBI, that we have sent to our local representatives. Dear Pat Buckley, Kevin O’Keeffe, Seán Sherlock and David Stanton Our names are Cam Wallace and Scott Baigent. We own and run a microbrewery in your constituency. We are writing to you today about the Craft Beer Bill being proposed by Alan Kelly, Labour TD. We would like you as our local representatives to throw your support behind this bill, for a number of reasons. Apart from the great boost to the local economy through increased revenue and tourism opportunities in Mitchelstown, the craft drinks industry will increase opportunities across right across the country. As we all sadly know, the concentration of jobs and industry in Dublin has lead to fewer opportunities in our beautiful regional and rural areas of Ireland. At the same time, increasing population in the capital has led to a housing crisis and unaffordable rents as people migrate to the city from outside Dublin. The beauty of the craft drinks industry in Ireland is that it is geographically spread right across the country; by developing industries like brewing, distilling and cider-making […]

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#8of8on8th 2016 – EDB Culchie Christmas Day Out!

#8of8on8th is BACK! Join us and 8 of our finest beers at 8pm on the 8th of December in Bierhaus Cork as we head to our big smoke for a culchie Christmas day out. Taking over the taps for the night are: #BanditSmokedAle NEW #WayfarerSourIPA NEW #FearlessFarmhouseAle NEW #FearlessFarmhouseAle – the only keg of un-aged Fearless in the country NEW #BigRiverIPA #HurricaneIPA #FullIrishIPA #KnockmealdownStout. See you there!

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Get in touch

Eight Degrees Brewing Co Ltd Unit 3, Coolnanave Industrial Park Dublin Road, Mitchelstown County Cork, Ireland Tel: (025) 84 933 Email: or Twitter: @8DegreesBrewing Facebook: Eight Degrees Brewing

We've just remixed our gift case! 8 different beers, 3 bottles of each for €61.50, including FREE DELIVERY. Search for REMIXED.