Smoked paprika, pretzels, bacon crumbles, fresh parsley, extra cheese and a drizzle cream, for garnish
Line a plate with a paper towel and set aside. Heat a large Dutch oven or soup pot over medium heat, and add bacon. Fry until golden and crisp to your liking then remove to the paper towel-lined plate and reserve the drippings.
Add butter to the drippings followed by the onion, celery, carrots, and ¼ tsp salt. Cook until the vegetables begin to soften. About 4-5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook for 1 minute more.
Sprinkle in the flour and whisk until well incorporated and the rawness has cooked out. About 1-2 minutes. Slowly pour in the beer, followed by the stock and cream, whisking constantly until the mixture smooths out and thickens. Heat until just bubbling then lower the heat and allow to simmer for 5 minutes, whisking often to ensure the bottom doesn’t scorch.
Sprinkle in the cheese, a handful at a time, whisking after each handful until the cheese is completely melted into the soup. Stir in the mustard, nutmeg, and black pepper. Adjust salt if needed.
Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with a sprinkling of smoked paprika, crunchy pretzels, salty bacon, bright fresh parsley, and a drizzle of cream.
For a Super Dreamy & Creamy Octoberfest Beer Cheese Soup:
Allow the beer cheese soup to cool for 5 minutes before pureeing.
Puree the soup in batches in a high powered blender. Add a few ladles full of soup to the blender, replace the lid, hold a thick towel over the top, then puree until the soup is completely smooth.
Once all of the soup is pureed, add it all back to the stockpot and heat until steaming and warm. Garnish and serve.