seasonsbestLet’s face it, there is so much momentous stuff taking place. Politics, the economy, it is all one big rockin’ ball of confusion. But this year, I am not going to let any of these matters get in the way of enjoying the great holiday beers, and there are so many to choose from. Well choose is not the right word, because I want to sample as many as possible. The annual favorites return, but I am also seeking new samples everyday (Point Brewery’s St. Benedict’s Winter Ale come to mind, I will have to go out of state to obtain it.) It is time to celebrate.
A remarkable sampler this year is Saranac’s Winter Classics. Not only does the collection contain some remarkable recipes, but also included is my beloved Christmas favorite, Saranac Season’s Best. The nut brown lager that uses Belgian malts, this absolutely delicious (at least for myself) beer has a nutty profile unlike any other. Combine that with the other selections, E.S.B., India Dark Ale, Vanilla Stout, Belgian style ale, and the Bohemian style Pilsener, and you have a flavor adventure, all ready to go. The Bohemian style Pilsener would be great watching football, it is a mouth watering slammer. The E.S.B. is so dead on accurate, Fuller’s would approve. The Vanilla Stout, although is modest in strength, is in fact a meal in itself. This is one of Matt Brewing’s very best samplers.
Over in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, the people at Troegs have released their MAD ELF ALE. The Mad Elf Ale is an amber-brown coloured holiday offering. An eccentric recipe that uses cherries and honey. It is reminiscent of Belgian microbrewery celebrations, with full strength (11% abv), spicy and mysterious.
Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale 2008 is the classic hoppy offering from Chico, California. It is good to see this available in the twelve pack box. I never tire of its distinct personality.
The same can be said of Summit Brewing’s Winter Ale. This deep roasted malty ale, is very porter like, and perfect for whenspaceball the weather turns cold. There is not a better time of the year to showcase a brewery’s personality.
There are so many more to get to. This is but a humble beginning.
My only prayer is thank you…


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