Traditional Beverages

A counterpoint to Monday’s question about tea:

The Super Bowl is Sunday, and a look in the fridge shows that I’m low on beer. What sort of beer should I buy to drink with the game?

Leave your suggestions in the comments.

Additional information: I generally prefer ale to lager, and don’t much care for pilsner. I’m willing to try just about anything that doesn’t have fruit in it, though– when I buy beer, I expect beer. If I wanted fruit juice, I’d buy wine.

The title is a reference to party advertising at Williams, back in the day.

Comments

  1. #1 chez
    February 1, 2008

    Brown’s Brewing Company, the excellent Troy brew pub, now has three of their brews available in bottles at local beverage centers. I especially like their India Pale Ale and their Oatmeal Stout. Their regular Pale Ale is also quite acceptable.

  2. #2 Dizzlski
    February 1, 2008

    I’m all for whatever your likes and the likes of your guests are. You could probably get away with anything that tastes like beer; people are going to drink during the game. You could pull out the risky stuff in the fourth, or during the half-time show (might be more entertaining). My experience has been; even if it sucks, after having three it doesn’t matter anymore.

  3. #3 Skwid
    February 1, 2008

    I pity Dizzlski’s experience, but then last night I ordered a $100 bottle of beer.

    Without knowing what kind of food you’ll be eating during the game, it’s harder to make a recommendation, but I’d say you want something easy drinking (you’ve got a couple of hours to kill, after all), and not too reliant on its carbonation. I’d probably stay away from the extremely hoppy beers, too, as you don’t want that aftertaste building up as time goes on…How about New Belgium’s Fat Tire? Amber color, light carbonation, pleasant aftertaste.

  4. #4 s1mplex
    February 1, 2008

    Hoegaarden!

  5. #5 Jonathan Vos Post
    February 1, 2008

    Patriots. Boston. American History. One choice:

    Sam Adams! But the trivia question: whose portrait is on the label?

  6. #6 Anon
    February 1, 2008

    Given the game, I suggest one of the many Sam Adams offerings.

  7. #7 J-Dog
    February 1, 2008

    As a former (current?)rugger, you have to drink Guinness.

    You might have some other beers available for any sisys (non-ruggers) that show up, be definitely NOT any American Beer from the Big Guys.

  8. #8 Mike Bruce
    February 1, 2008

    you have to drink Guinness

    I don’t really Get the Guinness boosters. I mean, it’s fine, but a nitro-mellowed beer-shake isn’t that exciting.

    My suggestion: Three Floyds’ Pride & Joy. Tasty, not likely to cause palate fatigue, generally quaffable.

  9. #9 Captain C
    February 1, 2008

    Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. I’d actually suggest Four Peaks Kiltlifter over Sierra, but AFAIK you pretty much can’t get that outside of Arizona.

    ‘Traditional beverages’ :^). Brings back memories.

  10. #10 Jason Adams
    February 1, 2008

    I was thinking Three Floyds too (like Mike Bruce), but not sure if you can get it in your area. Pride and Joy is a good option or maybe Gumballhead if you like wheat beers.

  11. #11 APP
    February 1, 2008

    Whichever brand buys the most $2 million+ advertisements.

  12. #12 Jamie Bowden
    February 1, 2008

    If you’re gonna drink a dark, McSorley’s Double Dark is superior to Guinness, and you can get it up there in Nu Yawk.

    The Sam Adams Boston Lager is a decent enough beer, but you can get the Winter Brew currently, which I really like.

  13. #13 Stuart Coleman
    February 1, 2008

    I love Newcastle Brown Ale, as well as the Sam Adams varieties, and most Hefeweizens are good too. The one type of beer I’ve never liked is IPA’s, especially Sierra Nevada’s (in fact, I’ve never tried a Sierra Nevada beer I’ve liked either).

  14. #14 chezjake
    February 1, 2008

    @ #12 Not wanting to get at lagerheads with you, but Sam Adams stopped distributing their seasonal Winter Lager a couple weeks ago. Their current seasonal is their admirable Double Bock, but that’s a bit heavy duty for Super Bowl drinking.

    And, BTW, Sam Adams Boston Ale is far superior to their Boston Lager, IMHO. It’s my “when in doubt, drink this” beer.

  15. #15 Ryan
    February 1, 2008

    Alexander Keiths, its probably more expensive in the states but it _is_ delicious.

  16. #16 milkshake
    February 1, 2008

    Alternative 1. Buy a mixed 12-pack from a decent microbrew company, that way it will be less boring to keep at knocking down one after another.

    Alternative 2. Since good brand american microbrews tend to be high-density + high-alcohol and you will be sitting there for awhile & don’t want to get too plastered and develop a dull headache, I would instead buy some good lighter import – English pale ale (Abbot Ale is fine) or real Irish red ale (Beamish for example), two different kinds, to intermix. (Or if you like hefe-weizen Paulander or Franziskaner are my favorites and are not-too-heavy – but some people do hate the yeasty hefe-weizen style so ask around first)

  17. #17 Skwid
    February 1, 2008

    JVP, is it Paul Revere? It looks rather like what I remember his portrait looking like…

    I’ll second chezjake on the Boston Ale > Boston Lager, if you’re going the Sam route.

    If you do go the Hefe-weizen route, don’t forget the fresh lemon wedges, and to agitate the bottle after 2/3rds of a pour to get all the unfiltered goodness!

  18. #18 Ewan
    February 1, 2008

    Chimay Bleu for preference. Dogfish Head ‘Raisin d’Etre’ as second choice. Neither of which has anything whatsoever to do with American ‘football’ but they’re damn good beers that your local source probably stocks.

    [Back in my undergrad days at Sheffield, (i) I helped run the student union, which was then the nation’s – and hence possibly the world’s – largest single beer consumer, and (ii) Guinness was _the_ drink of choice for almost all of the sports clubs. But especially the (fearsome) women’s rugby club. I confess to never being a fan myself – although drinking it in Ireland *does* improve the experience.]

  19. #19 Josh
    February 1, 2008

    As a Delaware native, I have to repeat the support of Dogfish Head which is probably the best brewery in America. For football watching, I’d suggest the simple taste of their Shelter Pale Ale or maybe the 60 Minute IPA.

  20. #20 clheiny
    February 1, 2008

    I’ll be heading over to the Boulder Creek Brewery for a growler of Redwood Ale. Not very convenient if you’re not in the San Lorenzo Valley (California central coast), though.

  21. #21 Brad Holden
    February 1, 2008

    I am gonna second the idea of sampling the local microbrews. There have to be ton in New York.

    Dogfish Head is pretty good, but drinking their IPAs (or anyone else’s IPAs) will end your afternoon in a hurry. Those have 6-9% alcohol by volume.

    I really like Hoegaarden (sniff, only one left, sniff) but I think it might violate the “only beer in the beer” rule, it has some spices add to it.

    A good Hefe is nice, but they seem to be hard to find in the US and lot of the microbrew Hefe’s are kind of sour.

  22. #22 Mike Bruce
    February 1, 2008

    I have to repeat the support of Dogfish Head which is probably the best brewery in America

    This is possibly true, which also implies they’re the best brewery in the world. After having their 120 Minute IPA, I’m willing to give them that. I’ve had Westvleteren 12, even, and the 120 is better. Two beers you probably don’t want to drink while watching football, I think. But “best brewery in the world” is going to depend on what kind of beer you like. DFH isn’t much for stouts, or milder beers, for example.

  23. #23 ponderingfool
    February 1, 2008

    Smithwick’s- a good Irish red ale. Very tasty. When I was in Ireland that was was the Irish pub-goers insisted I have. Very glad they did.

  24. #24 HP
    February 2, 2008

    I’m going to go against the grain of beer recommendations, and point out that the tradition of watching the superbowl on TV is something that dates back to the 1950s, a very different time and place. You don’t want a strong, distinctive beer that is going to overwhelm and disrupt the subtle pleasures of watching televised sports, and you want to drink something that honors the history and traditions of America. There’s really only one obvious choice:

    What’ll you have?
    Pabst Blue Ribbon.
    What’ll you have?
    Pabst Blue Ribbon.
    What’ll you have?
    Pabst Blue Ribbon,
    Pabst Blue Ribbon beer!

    Schlitz and Blatz would also be acceptable, but they are rather hard to find outside certain regions.

  25. #25 jrolsma
    February 2, 2008

    I like the Bridgeport beers. The Pintail Amber, the IPA, and the Ropewalk Amber are all good. Sierra Nevada is a good choice. Also, Flying Dog has some good beers.

    I also enjoy the New Belgium seasonals as well as second the Fat Tire recommendation.

  26. #26 Jonathan Vos Post
    February 2, 2008

    Re: # 17 | Skwid

    JVP, is it Paul Revere? [re: #5]

    Yes, I believe so. At an Altadena, California party of JPL scientists and Hollywood technical folks and friends and family, in Dec 2007 where a toast was drunk, with Sam Adams, for a subgroup with Boston affiliation, this question arose. I claimed Bostonianism via my Dad (Harvard), brother (B.U.; and married in Cambridge), collaborations with Isaac Asimov (B.U. Med School), and my M.S. & PhD(ABD) at Umass/Amherst. MIT grad and Geek/Standup comic Joey Friedman (Google for his web site) and his former Women’s US Chess Champion wife. Carl Sagan protege and Science Fiction novelist Dr. Thomas D. McDonough. Others. Anyway, Tom McDonough offered the lemma: “the default answer to ANY question asked in or near Boston with an historical human as answer is ‘Paul Revere.'”

    Some examples:

    * Who was officer in one of the most disastrous campaigns of the American Revolutionary War, a role for which he was later exonerated?

    * Whom, after the Revolutionary War, was early to recognize the potential for large-scale manufacturing of metal?

    * Who was born probably in very late December, 1734, in Boston’s North End; son of a French Huguenot father and a Boston mother; who had numerous siblings with whom he appears to have been not particularly close; and whose father’s given name was Apollos?

    * What prominent Freemason in Boston produced a number of political engravings and advertised as a dentist, then became increasingly involved in the actions of the Sons of Liberty?

    * Whose Revolutionary War role was not particularly noted during his life, yet in 1861, over 40 years after his death, became famous via a poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, which poem ngelected the more impressive parallel role by Dawes and Prescott?

    * Who, in the post-Revolution depression, opened a hardware and home goods store, by 1788 also opened an iron and brass foundry in Boston’s North End, recognized a burgeoning market for church bells in the religious revival (Second Great Awakening) that followed the war and became one of the best-known metal casters of that instrument, working with sons and Joseph Warren to cast the first bell made in Boston and produced over 900 in total?

    * Whom, in 1801, became a pioneer in the production in America of copper plating, opening North America’s first copper mill, south of Boston in Canton, from which mill copper was used to cover the original wooden dome of the Massachusetts State House in 1802 and to produce sheeting for the hull of the USS Constitution?

    * Who appears on the $5,000 Series EE Savings Bond issued by the United States Government?

    QED. We rest our case. The witness may now step down and join us in a frosty mug of default beverage.

  27. #27 Jonathan Vos Post
    February 2, 2008

    Off-line, re: #26, #17, #5,
    Tim Poston [Ph.D., Mathematics, University of Warwick (UK), 1972,
    Dissertation:”Fuzzy Geometry”,
    Mathematics Subject Classification: 22: Topological groups, Lie groups;
    Advisor 1: E. Christopher Zeeman
    Advisor 2: Roger Penrose]
    * Sir Ashutosh Mukherjee Professor, Mathematical Modeling Unit, National Institute of Advanced Studies, Indian Institute of Science Campus, Bangalore 560012, India

    etcetera, emailed me:

    “Why stick with lesser anæsthetics like alcohol, when complete game-immunity is so widely available?”

    to which I replied:

    “If atheism is a religion, then not playing football is a sport;
    and not playing Chess is a board game,
    albeit slightly lower complexity than not playing Go.”

  28. #28 Nathan
    February 2, 2008

    #24 You don’t drink Blatz. You just say the name and giggle. And that tradition that started in the 1950’s? Neat trick. The first Superbowl was in 1967. (Hey, they’re numbered for chrissakes.)

  29. #29 Brad Holden
    February 2, 2008

    It occurs to me that Chad misspelled the title

    It should be “Traditional BEvERages”

  30. #30 Skwid
    February 5, 2008

    So, Chad! What did you drink, man? Don’t keep us in suspense, here!

    Me, I had 2 Draft Can Guinnesses, 2 Shiner 98s, and 1/2 a Breckenridge Vanilla Porter.

  31. #31 Chad Orzel
    February 5, 2008

    I watched the first half at a student residence on campus, so I didn’t drink any beer. In the second half, I had a couple of bottles of Dogfish Head’s Raison d’Etre ale, which was very good.

  32. #32 Skwid
    February 5, 2008

    Indeed it is. An excellent choice.

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