Marble Ginger and 'cajun' chicken

This should have been a pairing of Manchester's finest with some ginger and coriander chicken at the weekend, but a rather, ahem, accessible bottle of chenin blanc forced its way down my gullet instead. For reasons best described as desperate, I'd also got some cajun-ish chicken pieces knocking around and was hoping that gingery beer would work well with the spicy-ish food.

From the off, let's be quite clear on one thing - I love Marble Ginger. This is the full-fat no-nonsense gingery beer of the Marble stable; they have a 4.5 percenter called, er, Ginger Marble as well but Marble Ginger is 6% and chock full of Zingiber officinale.

But not in a fiery, itchy, who-the-feck-polluted-my-beer-with-this-root-muck kind of way. It's.... refreshing. It tingles and leaves a mild heat behind. It's baby spice rather than overblown Ginger. On a hot day, this puts a smile on my face without making my tabs laugh, a balance of warmth and alcohol that counter-intuitively make it a proper quencher.

Having just spent an hour carving into a hedgerow with the Loudest Trimmer In The World Ever, my neighbours were ready to concrete my garden over and I was ready for a relaxing drink. Marble Ginger sated a thirst in sips, the natural spice warmth ensuring I didn't bolt it down.

How did it fare with the meal? OK - to be honest, the pre-prepared 'cajun' chicken wasn't going to win any authenticity awards but the mild spices of both dish and drink complemented each other pretty well. The slightly dusty tang of the chicken coating took the freshly-grated ginger feel from the beer, too much spice would perhaps have been confusing on the palate.

I reckon Marble Ginger would work with marinated lamb dishes as well. In fact, I'll be buying a few more bottles to try that pairing out sometime this summer. I buy mine from Derby's organic store Sound Bites - Marble beers being one of their popular organic beer offerings alongside the likes of Pitfield and Amber Ales. Why not ask your local organic store if they stock Marble beers - you can't beat a ginger beer that really is a beer and really does taste of ginger!


  1. I had the 4.5% version of this at the weekend and wasn't too keen - too... gingery! I only had a sip though and I think it's one of those beers that you need a whole pint to really get your head around. I can see it being an interesting match for spicy foods though.

    How do the Marble beers fare in the bottle? I'm just writing up about Pint and Dobber right now and they are both cracking beers from the cask.

  2. Have to say, Mark, the 4.5%-er was terrific. I had it 3 consecutive days over the weekend and it really is a wonderful ale. I've never tried the 6% but the word from A Swift One earlier in the year was that it was a disappointment from the cask.

    Out of interest Haddonsman, what are your thoughts on Leatherbritches Ginger Helmet. A far more sedate but equally satisfying brew IMO.

  3. @Mark - I've always found Marble bottles to be good - we get Lagonda IPA and Chocolate Marble as well and I've never had a bad 'un. Only had a few cask Marble beers (and missed Dobber at the C&H festival) but looking forward to trying more next month on the RateBeer day trip.

    @Dubbel - Leatherbritches was a little sweeter if I remember correctly; haven't had it for years, I ought to take a trip up the road to Ashbourne and see if it's still being brewed

  4. That's done it. I'm going to have to try it again! It wasn't love at first taste but I'll give it another go.

  5. Definitely still being brewed. It was on down here the other week. Leatherbritches fast becoming a favourite in mine and Mark's Pub Of The South.

  6. Might just slip into the Marble Arch for one tonight. Because I can!