LONDON -- On a recent evening, a group of Americans descended on the trendy South London neighborhood of Brixton to quaff craft beers from New York, Colorado and Michigan, paired with dishes like marinated beetroot with whipped sheep’s curd, puffed barley and hibiscus.
“Hops are insanely food-friendly,” Adam Dulye, executive chef for a Boulder, CO, trade body called the Brewers Association, told the gathering. “Think about how the hops interact in your mouth -- on the roof of your palate, on your tongue, through your nose -- and how they dance back and forth with the dish.”
The vegetarian dinner, designed to showcase the versatility of U.S. craft beer, was one of several events the Brewers Association has organized in the U.K. in recent years as it seeks to accelerate rising demand for American beer here.
Craft beer exploded in the U.S. over the past 30 years as a rash of microbrewers helped the country shrug off its reputation for producing bland, uninspiring mainstream lagers. More recently, that appeal has flowed overseas, sending exports of U.S. craft beer soaring to 446,151, 31-gallon barrels last year from 110,045 in 2011, according to the Brewers Association.
Britain is often the first port of call for many small U.S. brewers looking to expand internationally given the nation’s influence on U.S. beer.
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