Brewer Cody Reif on New Belgium ‘Blossoming into new territories’

Cody Reif has been the pilot brewer at New Belgium Brewery for many years in Fort Collins Colorado. From their flagship beer Fat Tire, to their amazing sours and seasonal beers, they are producing the best beers in Colorado.

What was your first “aha” moment with food and beer pairings?

The first time I had a Transatlantic Kriek (our sour cherry beer) with a ribeye. The way the acidity cut through the richness of the steak. It made both the beer and the food better at the same time. It’s still one of my favorite pairings to this day.

Why food and beer is for you?

To me they’re both opportunities to explore new flavors and interactions. I love trying new food and beers and it’s so exciting to see both the restaurant and brewing industries blossoming into new territories.

What is “next” for food and beer?

I think that fermented foods are going to become a larger force in the culinary world. Kimchi and sour kraut are just the tip of the iceberg. Sour, acid rich flavors are a key component to any well prepared meal. Bridging the gap between the food world and the fermenting expertise that brewers have has the potential to create some exquisite flavors that can be new tools for chefs to use. On the other hand, brewers can always learn for the culinary world. It’s usually the first place you see new ingredients or combinations of ingredients. Many of the new beers I create have been inspired by food and the chefs that made them.

What Chef is creating something that works well with your beer?

What could be better than BBQ and beer? My favorite chef/pitmaster is Aaron Franklin of Franklin Barbeque in Austin. It’s not exactly a bold choice, he has more admirers then all the Kardashians put together but I really appreciate his approach to making food. Simple, straightforward with great ingredients and a reginal tie. I would love to make a beer for him someday.