Chefs Flex Their Beer Mussels with Fresh Takes on Shellfish and Suds

Mike Sula

Was it an act of farmhouse ale-induced bravado that led the first Belgian chef to steam moules in beer rather than wine? We may never know, but the ubiquity of domestically brewed Belgian-style beer seems to have unleashed a similar audacity among chefs who’ve taken to adapting unconventional flavor profiles to the once insurgent, but now familiar, pairing. Unlike wine, beer lends a malty base to the stew that complements the mollusk’s natural sweetness...