The Thanksgiving Beer Post

I like wine well enough, but Thanksgiving should be more of a beer holiday, and I don’t mean downing eight beers with old friends the night before off dirty taps and watching the parade with a hangover. True story, I once went out to a local place with a great selection, had two beers and woke up absolutely miserable on Thanksgiving. It was in the early 2000s, and I blame dirty taps, even if I don’t have any proof.

So now that I’m “grown up” and hosting Thanksgiving and a little more in control of the menu and the beverage selection, what’s the plan? The crowd will still be pandemic-limited, so there won’t be that many drinkers at my house, which is a shame, but that’s not going to stop me. 

Alementary Brewing releases a Thanksgiving beer, an English Barleywine called Figgy Pudding. It’s a beer aged on Turkish figs, Turkish apricots, and Medjool dates and then into Jamaican rum barrels. It’s a great rich and malty beer that pairs well with the season. 

Another great drink is cider. Apple cider is already a delicious fall/harvest beverage, and it’s even better with booze. I recently purchased a pack of cider from Graft Cidery called Back Country Old Fashioned Cider, Citrus & Bourbon, and it’s quite delicious. It’s almost like a cocktail, because of the bourbon flavor, but the lemony citrus gives it enough acidity to not be overly sweet, and it just seems to go well with everything. 

What, you might ask, is Botty McBotface, our resident AI, drinking for Thanksgiving? 

“I’ll tell you what,” Botty said, “I’m gonna make a big batch of wine spritzer. I’m really excited about it. It’s gonna be great! I’ll put the wine in the blender, add some soda water, ice, and cranberry juice. That way, everybody can have a glass of wine.”

Sure. You could do wine. Spritzers seem like the way to go, give yourself a little carbonation to go with the big meal. I saw a fun recipe of Limoncello, cranberry juice, and seltzer, which I might give a whirl. Maybe even use prosecco instead of seltzer. 

I personally like to drink Oktoberfests on Thanksgiving, because I feel like beyond that I start looking at all the stouts and dark rich Christmasy stuff, and if I have any Oktoberfest left they just linger in my fridge, despite being one of my more loved styles. Drink ‘em while you got ‘em, so to speak. 

All in all, the best Thanksgiving drink is the one that’s in your hand, and if it hits the spot and pairs well with whatever you’re eating, all the better. So feel free to share your beer photos with us on Twitter or Instagram, and have a happy Thanksgiving!

Ceetar can be found on Twitter and Untappd where he’s currently making apple pie and drinking an Alementary Random Placement Of Things.  You can also email him at beer@ceetar.com.

Thanksgiving Is A Beer Holiday

People might talk to you about wine at Thanksgiving, and that’s fine if you like wine, but it’s really the perfect holiday for beer. There is no gift exchange. You’re probably filling your stomach with plenty of alcohol-soaking food. It’s an all day holiday but besides dinner you really have no obligations but to sit around and chat…..and drink.

So why not beer? Even leaving aside the ways certain beers can pair better with all that rich and heavy food, most of your drinking probably isn’t happening at dinner. So open up a big bottle you’ve been saving, maybe even something someone gave you during the holiday season last year. Have an unofficial bottle share. Introduce family members that aren’t usually beer drinkers to some of the different flavors some of these beers bring.

Thanksgiving may be dressed up as a fancy dinner in some respects, but it’s not, nor has it ever been. It’s a working man’s celebration that there is enough food to last the winter. To celebrate the harvest being in, the land being plentiful, to be thankful of those that help us survive and thrive. The classic dishes aren’t fancy dishes out of a fancy restaurant, even in the age of farm to table. They’re simple, classic dishes.  Meat, potatoes, veggies. This isn’t a 10 course dining experience; most of the time you’re chatting, and munching, and watching sports. So beer. Beer fits perfectly. Or cider. A crisp apple cider goes really well with a lot of these dishes, but let’s talk about the beer.

You’re going to start early, you’re going to have a big meal in the middle, long before you even entertain driving. You can have a few, or a big, beer. Open up that 10-14% bomber of stout that you’d never find a time to drink on your own. Share it. Bring out those pumpkin beers you bought but didn’t love, I bet you’ll find a lot of people interested in trying some of that. Did you score a bottle of some fancy limited release bourbon barrel aged concoction? Did you pick up a six-pack of less rare, but still delicious, Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout? Did someone bring something you’ve never heard of but thought you’d like because you’re into beer? Open them! Drink them! Share them! Most of the guests are there with nothing to do but drink, chat, and eat. It’s basically a bottle share with a big meal at the end.

My Thanksgiving is going to be low-key this year, I’m eating out at a German restaurant, which probably means Oktoberfest with dinner. On Saturday I’m having some friends over, and that’s when I’ll break out the Thanksgiving beer. The Alementary makes a delicious English Ale aged in rum barrels called Figgy Pudding that I have a bottle of from each of their now three years of making it. I’m excited to do a vertical tasting of this. After that I plan to open a bomber of Brooklyn Brewery’s Tripel Burner, a Licorice-spiced tripel aged in white wine barrels, that comes in at 10.6% ABV.

What beers are you planning to share for Thanksgiving? Comment below, or tweet us at @BarleyProse on Twitter or @BarleyProseBlog on Instagram with the hashtag #Beersgiving.

July 4th Beer Selections

Just a quick friendly reminder that all craft beer is the perfect patriotic choice of beverage, and those red white and blue bottles you see everywhere are actually part of a huge international conglomerate.

 

Fruit beers and lightly soured beers are particularly popular lately. Goses as well, which is a style of beer with some salt in it.

 

I haven’t quite decided what I’m bringing to the party, the hosts have a keg of Yuengling which will do in a pinch, but I’m leaning towards something like Bell’s Oberon and Bell’s Two-Hearted, which are new to New Jersey.

 

What are you drinking? Let us know in the comments or on Twitter at @BarleyProse.