Sometimes, the internet gets it very wrong. This is not one of those times. Outsider puts the internet’s newest craze -“pickle in cheap beer” – to the test.
What do you do when your team begins discussing the newest internet beer craze, only to realize you have both ingredients in your fridge? You try it immediately. Full disclosure: I love pickles. And while I am more of a whiskey drinker, nothing beats a cold beer on a scorching July day. So, naturally, I took one for the team and placed (see: crammed) a pickle straight down into a freshly-cracked Corona Extra.
We’ll get into the summer-altering experience below. But first, an Outsider history lesson.
Back in 2017, Esquire spoke to Joe McClure of McClure’s Pickles to get to the bottom of what was then, at best, a meh fad. McClure, who literally takes a jar of pickle juice with him on his runs, sold it, however.
“It complements the lager because of the slight vinegar and salt notes that get picked up,” he said. “Pickles are the perfect snack: cucumbers soaked in evil.”
I like this man. Fast-forward to 2021, and Michigander Kaitlin Gates of SimpleMost brought the pickle & beer combo back in a big way. “This is a well-known trick across the Midwest,” she says, before trying it herself. And while Gates didn’t love this Midwestern hack, she does admit “it works.” And that’s after bringing in several notable instances of the Pickle Beer – specifically the recent #spearinabeer campaign from Pabst Blue Ribbon.
People are trying this craze everywhere. It’s lighting up Twitter, in fact. But does it check out?
Pickle in a Cheap Beer: ‘Cheap’ is Key & Yes, it is Good
Well, this Nashville Outsider is here to tell you it does. Damn well, in fact.
In my household growing up, we swore by Claussen chilled dill pickles. I still consume them weekly. As for beer, my late father would only ever drink Corona on a hot day (he was a Tennessee contractor, so we had plenty of those). So it makes sense, of course, that I would have three cold Coronas and a jar of Claussen-inspired homemade pickles in my fridge.
All of the above led to one of my homemade dill & jalapeno pickles being crammed down the neck of an Extra (see above). And it’s good. Real good. Made better by the fact that it is 95 degrees outside as I drink it while writing this article on the back porch. Gotta keep it authentic up in here, after all (I’m dying).
The saltiness of the vinegar and crisp hit of the jalapeno compliment the light Corona beer perfectly. If my favorite bar were to say “Hey Jon, we’re having a Pickle & Beer Day!” – I’d cancel any other plans that got in the way. I am, in short, a big fan of this combo.
But herein lies the key: Please don’t try this with a fancy IPA or lager. Cheap beer and a good pickle are paramount.
In all honestly, I only have one regret – and it’s the sad homemade pickle at the bottom of an empty Corona bottle that I can’t eat.