Ryan Broomfield’s pie-making pedigree is strong. Broomfield learned the art from his younger brother, Neil, a decorated pie-maker who in 2015 won the title of Supreme Pie Champion of Britain for his Goosnargh chicken, mushroom and English mustard cream pie.
Now based on Sydney’s northern beaches, Ryan runs Broomfields, which knocks out handcrafted pies using seasonal produce sourced from farmers’ markets and local suppliers.
With few better pairings than beer with a pie, we asked the dedicated pie man to match six of his gourmet pies with Australian craft beers.
Pie: smoked trout and wasabi cream
Beer: James Squire One Fifty Lashes Pale Ale
“This smoky, creamy, wasabi-flavoured pie really needs something fresh and fruity,” says Broomfield, who recommends pairing it with “the absolute classic” James Squire One Fifty Lashes Pale Ale. “The combo of fish pie and beer is like a party in the mouth and everyone’s invited,” he says.
Pie: pot roast chicken and manchego cheese
Beer: Nomad Brewing Co. Freshie Salt and Pepper
Nomad Brewing Co.’s Freshie Salt and Pepper is a northern beaches interpretation of Gose, a salty, top-fermented beer from Goslar in Germany. Brewed with seawater and Tasmanian pepperberry, this unusual beer is Broomfield’s pick to drink with his pot roast chicken, chard, corn and manchego cheese pie.
“I love chargrilled corn on the cob with chilli, lime and cheese,” he says. “The pie is a play on this.” Spice comes by way of Diemen’s Original Hot Sauce, made with the same Tasmanian pepperberry Nomad uses in the Freshie Salt And Pepper.
Broomfield is particularly effusive about this pie and beer pairing. Consuming them together is “simply biblical”, he says. “It's like having your mum’s chicken pie with your older brother’s chilli sauce and uncle Ron’s secret beer stash.”
Pie: ham, black pudding and sugar plum
Beer: White Rabbit Dry Stout
The ham, black pudding and sugar plum pie needs “a serious beer” to match it, says Broomfield. He suggests going with a proper stout. “You really can't go far wrong with White Rabbit's Dry Stout,” he says.
Pie: cheese, onion and potato
Beer: Mountain Goat Summer Ale
Broomfield adds hot English mustard and Prickle Hill Worcester sauce to his Welsh rarebit-inspired cheese, onion and potato pie. Traditionally, a stout would be added to the mix, he says, but to preserve the pie filling’s pale-yellow hue he added Mountain Goat Summer Ale instead.
This pie is unabashedly rich. “I use a lot of cheese,” Broomfield says. “It's like eating a block of vintage cheddar encased in rich buttery pastry.” Broomfield says the Summer Ale, a dry, fruity and crisp beer, is well-suited to cutting through all that delicious dairy.
Pie: Cape Grim steak and stout
Beer: 4 Pines Kolsch
Broomfield uses a stout from 4 Pines Brewing Co. in this pie. “The distinct flavour really comes through,” he says. “You get the bitter aftertaste, which I love.” To balance the bitterness, he adds sweet red-currant jelly. He recommends another 4 Pines brew to drink with the Cape Grim steak and stout pie: 4 Pines Kolsch. “Its citrus aromas really freshen the palate.”
Pie: Lamb, Ale, Lemon and Pea
Beer: Dad & Dave's Brewing #4 Gold
For this pie, Broomfield wanted an ale that wouldn’t overpower the lamb’s delicate flavours. He settled on #4 Gold, a golden ale from northern beaches outfit Dad & Dave’s Brewing. The #4 Gold works well not just as an ingredient, but as an accompaniment. It’s “an easy drink against the salty braised lamb shoulder and chopped preserved lemons in the pie”, says Broomfield.
This article produced by Broadsheet in partnership with James Squire.