Top Chefs Name Favorite Beers: Flying Dog in Heat Wheat Among Them

The restaurant industry basically runs on booze and cigarettes, so it's no surprise that most chefs have more than a little knowledge when it comes to libations. Pair a trained palate with a taste for craft brews -- and you've got yourself some serious experts on all things beer.

So in honor of American craft beer week, we spoke to some of Miami's hottest chefs about what USA-made brews they're into imbibing. See their faves after the jump.

See also:

- SweetWater Brewery to Bring Craft Beers to Miami

- Five Amazing Craft Beers from San Diego, a Microbrew Mecca

Giorgio Rapicavoli, Eating House

"My favorite American craft beer is Flying Dog In-Heat Wheat. It's a phenomenal American hefeweizen out of Maryland. Not many American wheat beers capture the true flavor of a German hefeweizen but I think this one may be even better than most German beers."

Jose Mendin, Pubbelly

"Cigar City's Florida Cracker for its citrus and coriander notes. It's a great Florida white ale that is like a combination of a Belgian white and a German hefeweizen."

Dean James Max, DJM Restaurants: 3030 Ocean (among others)

"Cucumber Saison, Cigar City. I love the saison style of beer for its sour acidity, which pairs wonderfully with seafood. The cucumber element gives it the perfect subtle balance and crisp freshness. The smooth beer is great on a hot summer day with some chilled seafood or even some crispy Key West Pink shrimp. I really like to support my local Florida breweries; Cigar City is a world-class company that has won many awards for their interesting brews."

Dena Marino, MC Kitchen

"Dogfish Head 61 Minute. This is a beer and wine hybrid. It's the rose of beers. It's 60 minute plus one ingredient, grape must from California grapes. It's refreshing, fruity and complex at the same time, which is why I love it."

Matthew Oetting, Tosca

Monk in the Trunk by Inlet Brewing Company. We've recently added this beer to our bar and I love it. It has a nice balance between an amber and brown ale making it not as light as a Budweiser but not too heavy to be drunk with dinner: a nice even balance.

Howie Kleinberg, Bulldog Barbecue and Burger

Swamp Ape IPA, which we serve at Bulldog. It has a high alcohol content of 10% and a great hoppy taste as it uses five varieties: Tettnang, Centennial, Chinook, Cascade and Amarillo. The taste really cuts through the richness of barbecue.

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