Right off the bat you should know IPA’s are the perfect beer for Mexican food. With this being the first week of Lent (and Valentine’s Day) fish tacos were in order. I don’t know about you, but I was hooked the first time trying a fish taco, plus nothing goes better with a taco than beer!
We were inspired this morning with Rick Bayless’ Limey (+/-+ Spicy) Beer on the Rocks. It must be all of our talk lately of running away to Ensenada that turned our Negra Modelo into one hell of a drink. Worcestershire and Tobasco additions along with lime juice and a salt rimmed glass turned the Negro Modelo into a spicy drink that we enjoyed.
Sticking with the same chef that gave us the Spicy Beer, we picked Rick’s Classic Ensenada Fish Taco recipe. He’s a great American chef that knows Mexican food better than most. It’s best to think of sitting on our patio in Southern California overlooking Catalina Island when enjoying this meal. We used halibut for the fish and the tempura coating fried up wonderful. The mayo/sour cream sauce and lime cooled off the chipotle salsa kick. The corn tortilla’s were flash fried to give them a crisp while still allowing them to be folded over for a perfect bite.
One would think a Mexican cerveza such as a Dos Equis Amber, Negra Modelo or Pacifico would be the way to go but a citrusy IPA also pairs perfectly. We chose Cincinnati’s Mad Tree Brewing PysHOPathy IPA. The hops (Cascade, Chinook & Centennial) complimented the heat from the salsa.
Music-wise, Jack Johnson seemed like a perfect pair with an ocean breeze and this fresh taco. His album Brushfire Fairytales holds a dear spot in my heart (yes, I have one!). Even though it came out 15 years ago, songs such as Inaudible Memories, Flake and Fortunate Fool are still strong to this day.