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Pairing: Horrifying Vintage Holiday Meals with Beer

12-23-2014

Nothing says Christmas time like copious amounts of unwanted traditional treats to choke down. Buzzfeed took it further with their top list of horrifying vintage holiday dishes. In case you are intrigued by the combination of jell-o with tuna, jello-with turkey or jell-o with green olives, here is a select list of dishes perfectly paired with beer.

 

 

Tuna Christmas Tree Paired with Deschutes Mirror Pond Pale Ale

There’s nothing like discovering your elf on the shelf whipped up some tuna salad adorned with parsley, jell-o “ornaments” served with a side of stale crackers in the middle of the night. To really celebrate this molded atrocity, pair it with Deschutes Mirror Pond Pale Ale. Light bitterness from the hops combat the sweet jell-o while cutting through the creamy concoction while the body is light enough to not overpower the tree, which may or may not turn out to be edible.

 

Frozen Fruitcake Salad paired with Hoegaarden

Picture all the reasons fruitcake is bad. Now, add in some spinach and what appears to be a creamy cheese, although in this case mayo isn’t too off of a guess, either. That is the quivering mound of fruitcake salad. Pair it with Hoegaarden, a Weisbier. The beer’s creamy mouthfeel and bright nose are sure to complement, if not somewhat hide, the sweetness from the cake-salad.

 

Molded Pate Cheese Balls paired with Arcadia Ales Nut Brown

The name says enough in regards to this dish’s flavor profile. Just imagine hands lovingly mushing and molding liver and cheese together into globe-like shapes then dumping them into a mold and adding jell-o. Jell-o used to be its own category on the food pyramid, apparently. Arcadia Ales Nut Brown ale has a steady malt bone that adds a roastiness to the cheesed mold and pairs well with the meatiness of the liver.

 

 

Noel Glazed Ham Paired with New Belgium Trippel 

What this ham is glazed with remains a mystery of epic proportions. Best bets are on a spreadable cheese or mayo. However, jell-o is definitely included in this dish. How else would it look so festive? Drink New Belgium Brewing Co. Trippel to highlight the sweet tones of the baked ham while simultaneously scrubbing off any thick residue left behind by the mystery glaze.

 

Holiday Vegetable Loaf Paired with Oskar Blues Mama's Little Yella Pils 

Nothing says the holidays like a loaf. A healthy alternative dish to bring to a feast, this has everything; cranberry-shaped whales, apples, broccoli, mashed potatoes, tomatoes and mystery loaf. Pair a can of Mama’s Little Yella Pils from Oskar Blues Brewery with this free-form salad experiment. The light body won’t take away from the salad-ish ingredients while the grassy hops and bready malt character might actually enhance this dish. Maybe. Anything is possible

 

Just Blip It

07-03-2014

As we celebrate our country’s birthday in patriotic fanfare we can also get a bit philanthropic while playing a beer game. Yes, that many great things can be combined. As a part of its Folds of Honor partnership Budweiser is rolling out the Just Blip It app, which will take user interaction to decide on each state’s portion of the $1.5 million raised by Budweiser for the foundation this year.

 

“We’ve used Blippar for other brand programs, but never in a philanthropic program designed to generate awareness of a non-profit while encouraging consumers to support their local community,” said Lucas Herscovici, vice president of digital for Anheuser-Busch. “This program gives us a unique way to use technology to enhance our longstanding relationship with the Folds of Honor Foundation in a way that Budweiser drinkers can share the experience with friends through Twitter, Facebook, email and Google Plus.”

 

 

Here’s how you play.

• Download Blippar from the iPhone store or Google Play.

• “Blipp the Bowtie” by opening the app and aiming the smart phone screen at the Budweiser bowtie logo found on all Budweiser packaging, including the new “red, white and blue” packaging now in stores. This then triggers the interactive mobile experience.

• Pick a U.S. state to help determine where a portion of the philanthropic support could be directed as they learn more about the Folds of Honor Foundation, which provides educational scholarships to the families of soldiers wounded or fallen while serving their country.

More information on the app can be found here.

 

Beer is the Best. Ever.

04-07-2014
Tags: Beer, Holidays

Beer is the Best. Ever.

Beer is most likely the best thing humanity has ever accomplished (I’m 99 percent positive on this). Yes, fire and the wheel helped out humankind immensely but do you reach for a nice pint of fire or wheel after a long day? No.

 

 

The appeal of beer can’t be denied. Remember that one time the government tried to make it illegal? Didn’t work out too well, which is why today Americans get to rejoice and celebrate the repeal of prohibition day (AKA Beer Day).  And that’s why on National Beer Day here’s a list of the ultimate (personally biased) reasons why beer rocks the sock’s off of civilization.

 

1.  You can drink it on a daily and moderate basis to live a longer life.

 

2. You can bathe in it for a spa –like skin treatment.

 

3. The variety is astounding – any kind of beer you want probably exists in some part of the world (or will soon). There’s quite possibly a special beer for everyone out there.

 

 

4. It is the perfect tangible example of the connectivity between agriculture, production and consumption. Sometimes beer recipes change because there is a hop shortage or a new beer is created due to a brewery mishap. These things aren’t hidden away, rather they are placed out there to further involve the consumer in the beautiful process that is beer making.

 

5. A beer a day keeps the doctor away.

 

6. It saved the world. Or at least that’s what I heard.

 

7. It makes food taste better. Whether it’s the perfect beer/food pairing or the beer is being used to marinate meat or enrich a soup – beer heightens the experience of eating.

 

8. Beer helped put Grand Rapids on the map. From a mid-sized city, Grand Rapids morphed into a hub of beer activity and is now a top tourist destination in the country and will be hosting the homebrewers’ national convention this summer.

 

9. Because grabbing a pint with a buddy after work sounds way better than getting a mug of hot cocoa or a goblet of wine. It just does.

 

Do it today. For National Beer Day. Because it's the best.

 

2013 Beer Release Review

12-30-2013

2013 Beer Releases Review

 

2013 is going down in history as the year full of fun and beer. Beer highlights  included new packaging and brand new beers in the market. Here’s a breakdown of the biggest beer introductions in Grand Rapids for the 2013 year. Take a look, reminisce and check out any beers you haven’t gotten your mitts on yet.

 

Budweiser Black Crown

As the winner from Budweiser’s Project 12 competition, Black Crown launched at the same time as the 2013 SuperBowl. An amber lager aged over beachwood chips it delivers a smooth flavor that made it stand out from the nation-wide competition held, making it the audience favorite and then the newest addition to the Bud Family.

 

Rochester Mills Beer Co.

Just in time for the Michigan Winter Beer Festival, Rochester Mills Beer Co. (based out of Rochester, MI) began distribution via draft and cans. For many, this was the best belated Christmas present they could get since in Rochester Mills Beer Co. consistently is one of the most sought-after and popular beer pubs in the state and with their distribution launch are now available in Grand Rapids.

 

Petoskey Brewing

A new brewery from the North launched their beers on draft in the first quarter of 2013. Although the brewery is itself new, the idea is rooted in 100-year history, dating back to 1898 when the original “Old Brewery” used the building for the original Petoskey Brewing facility. Now, Petoskey Brewing once again shines as a brewing landmark while providing artisan beers to the Grand Rapids area and beyond.

 

Bud Light Straw-Ber-Rita

The Bud Light Rita family gained two new additions this year, beginning with Straw-Ber-Rita in the spring. Straw-Ber-Rita, and then the limited winter specialty Cran-Brrr-Rita, provided more choices to the Rita family for those who wanted a change from the original Lime-A-Rita. And those new choices are mighty tasty together!

 

Oskar Blues Brewery

This past march the 2013 Craft Brewer of the Year, Oskar Blues Brewery, launched their Cantastic line up in the Mitten State. The brewery is renown for sparking the craft can revolution by being the first brewery to distribute their beers in cans only. Since then, the brewery has grown exponentially, with a new brewery located in North Carolina, which is good since it craft beer drinkers continue to steadily and increasingly gravitate and drink up the fuh-CAN-tastic beers from Oskar Blues.

 

New Belgium Brewing: Rampant Imperial IPA

Rampant is a well-balanced example of an imperial IPA. Calypso and Mosaic hops combined to create a bright citrus aroma and stonefruit flavor profile in this bitter, copper-colored brew. As a brand new addition to the Explorer Series, Rampant IPA contribute a heaping handful of hops bitterness that leaves you craving more.

 

Perrin Brewing: Grapefruit IPA

This year Perrin Brewing produced a fantastic line up of new beers from their brewery in Comstock, MI – there wasn’t a bad one in the bunch. However, one that stood out was the summer seasonal, Grapefruit IPA. A sessionable and low IBU IPA that simply burst with fragrant citrus aroma and taste stole the show this summer.

 

Stella Cidre

This year, Stella Artois introduced Stella Cidre, a European-style cider that showcases an effervescent body with a dry and crisp finish. Since it first launched, Stella Cidre has won multiple accolades, including winning gold at the 2013 North American Beer Awards.

 

Smuttynose Brewing Co.

Smuttynose Brewing Co. launched Finestkind IPA and Big A IPA drafts through West Side Beer in October, bringing another world-class brewery to Michigan. Based out of Portsmouth, Smuttynose is a leading craft brewer in its home state of New Hampshire while both Finestkind IPA and Big A IPA are top rated beers on BeerAdvocate and RateBeer...and are now available in the Great Beer State

 

Frankenmuth Christmas Town

Frankenmuth’s newest release, Christmas Town joined the ranks as the brewery’s winter seasonal, ensuring that everyone got into the holiday spirit. A delightful winter warmer, this new addition to the Frankenmuth family helped us end the 2013 year on a happy and beery note.

 

 

 

Give the Gift of Beer

12-19-2013

It’s officially one week until Christmas. The mall is now a scary place to visit. It’s time to find some sanctuary in the beer aisle and, while you’re at it, finish holiday shopping. Here’s the ultimate list of booze to get for that hard-to-buy-for (over 21 years old) person on your list.

 

 

The Mixologist: Shock Top Choctop

Essentially a beer cocktail kit in a 6 pack, Choctop is a black and tan featuring the winter seasonal Chocolate Wheat and Shock Top Belgian.

 

The Gluten Free: Angry Orchard Cider

Gluten-free drinking is no longer a problem with the rise of ciders, especially with the range provided by Angry Orchard. Choose between Crisp Apple, Traditional Dry, Apple Ginger or the winter seasonal Cinnful Apple. Or, have all of the above.

 

The Sweet Tooth: Right Brain Naughty Girl Stout

No longer is sweet treats regulated to the kitchen, beers provide rich, chocolate flavors with a bit more than a sugar kick. Naughty Girl Stout is aptly named since the flavor profile is reminiscent of the popular mint chocolate cookie.

 

The Snow Bunny: New Belgium Accumulation

Whether its snow or hops accumulating, this winter white IPA is full of bright hop aroma that will warm up anyone after a day on the slopes.

 

The Hop Head: Arcadia Ales Hop Rocket Imperial IPA

Simcoe hops bring out an assertive aroma that will bring you to the moon and back.

 

Cran Brrr Rita Food Pairing

11-18-2013

Bud Light Cran Brrr Rita Thanksgiving: Food Pairing

 

 

The margarita with a twist recently debuted a limited edition winter seasonal, Cran Brrr Rita. The drink combines Bud Light Lime with tart cranberry flavor and slightly sweet margarita flavor. It pours a festive, deep red hue and gives off a sweet cranberry aroma with a hint of lime. The 8% ABV beverage is served best over ice, but there are other accompaniments to this winter seasonal that also enhance the flavor. Without further ado, here is the top holiday food fare to match with Bud Light Lime Cran Brrr Rita.

Turkey

The citrus and tart notes in Cran Brrr Rita contrast the thick slices of juicy turkey, robust with earthy spices.

Stuffing

Whether your stuffing of choice is traditional, oyster, sausage, cornbread or another variety Cran Brrr Rita makes a great accompaniment. The beeriness in the beverage matches the stuffing’s starchiness while adding a sweet note to the saltiness.

Pumpkin Pie

The creaminess of the pie is offset by the light-bodied tartness of the beverage while the two types of sweet play off each other well.

Also, check out this great commercial that’s all about Cran Brrr Rita coming home for the holidays.

 

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