Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas From Beerjanglin'

NPR had a solid little story on Christmas beers yesterday. Solid mostly because it featured Don "Joe Sixpack" Russel and his considerable knowledge on the subject. You can give it a read or listen here. And check out Joe Sixpack's top 10 Christmas beers, it's about as sound a list as you'll find:

10 Christmas Beers, From Soup To Nuts

Mad Elf Beer Bottle and glass.

"Think fruitcake, but not the awful one made by your Aunt Bertha," Russell says of Troegs Mad Elf. "This beer tastes like it's been aged in an apple cider cask." Courtesy Don Russell

Samichlaus bottle and glass.

Advertised as "The Strongest Lager Beer In The World," Samichlaus has 14 percent alcohol — that's three times as strong as the average beer. Make sure you have a designated sleigh driver. Courtesy Don Russell

Smuttynose Winter Ale (New Hampshire), a sweet dark beer with notes of cherry and chocolate. Pair with snapper soup.

Stille Nacht (Belgium), a sweet, very strong pale ale. Pair with a washed-rind cheese such as Limburger.

Troegs Mad Elf (Pennsylvania), a strong dark ale brewed with cherries and honey. Pair with bacon quiche.

Mahr's Christmas Bock (Germany), a classic, malty Bavarian bock. Pair with a sausage plate.

Anchor Our Special Ale (California), a spiced winter warmer with a spruce aroma. Pair with cranberry salad.

Samuel Smith's Winter Welcome (England), a classic unspiced winter warmer with mellow roasted malt. Pair with roasted turkey.

Anderson Valley Winter Solstice (California), a spiced winter warmer with warming vanilla notes. Pair with pumpkin pie.

Baladin Noel (Italy), a Belgian-style strong dark ale with a vibrant, spicy yeast character. Pair with those red-and-green-wrapped Hershey kisses.

Samichlaus (Austria), a smooth, brandylike triple bock. Pair with a cigar next to the fireplace.

Gouden Carolus Noel (Belgium), a strong dark ale spiced with herbs. Pair with salted pecans.

Merry Christmas, whatever you're drinking.

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