That Time We: Had the Shake Shack Beer Pairing Menu

We have have long been fans of Shake Shack, braving long lines in Madison Square Park so we could devour one of the delicious burgers and a creamy milkshake. We have even specially ordered a grilled cheese or two, and the crispy fries are on the top of our list.

But when we were invited to sample a special Beer Tasting Menu with Shake Shack’s Culinary Director Mark Rosati (his burgers won Best in Show at this year’s Burger Bash during South Beach Food & Wine Festival), we were intrigued and excited. Burgers AND beer? Yes, please.

Shake Shack Mark Rosati

Shake Shack’s Mark Rosati

Created six years ago specially for Shack Shake by brewmaster Garrett Oliver from Brooklyn Brewery, the ShackMeister Ale is an American Pale Ale, with a bitter and citrus aroma and a malty flavor.

“It’s heady with a grapefruit note,” Rosati explains. “We needed something that could stand out in Madison Square Park among all the other scents.”

Game on.

The tasting began at a the Battery Park City location, which was buzzing despite the fact that it was 3 p.m. and not quite lunch or dinner. We started off with The DogMeister – a Vienna all-beef hot dog topped with Shack cheddar and American cheese sauce and crispy ShackMeister Ale-marinated shallots on a Martin’s Potato Bun.

“We wanted to create a comfort food with an edge,” Rosati, who studied film at NYU before leaving to shadow Tom Colicchio for two years launch a culinary career and later join Danny Meyer at Shake Shack, says. “We’re here to peddle pleasure and comfort.”

Pleasured and comforted we were. The ShackMeister Ale perfectly complimented the “snap” and juiciness of the hot dog, and we were instantly obsessed with the beer-marinated shallots.

Before we could even finish the first course, the burgers arrived. The perfectly cooked, flavorful burger. Needless to say, it was delicious. Once again topped with the ShackMeister Ale shallots and paired with a pint of the ale, we took it down fast. And almost didn’t have time for dessert.

Shake Shack burgers and beer


Out came the custard, a blend of the Shack’s thick and creamy vanilla custard blended with ShackMeister Ale and topped with crumbled peanut brittle. (Sorry folks: this one isn’t on the menu).

Shake Shack beer custard

The beer and the peanut flavor were like a party in our mouth. We were way too full to finish it, but we did anyway. And then chugged our beer. It was the right thing to do.

Shake Shack: various locations;


*with Tara Fougner






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