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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

Breweries Help to Make the Season Bright

Breweries Help to Make the Season Bright

Winter will be smashing into the UMB campus, making the already smile inducing commute that much more joyful. Whether riding a jam packed train that smells of damp wool or the wheels of your salt encrusted sedan are failing to grasp the slushy pavement on I-93, you will be cursing the entire trip. Remember when we were kids and didn’t have to worry about the implications the weather had on our commute? Me neither. Luckily, Sierra Nevada, Samuel Adams, and Harpoon breweries have created three beers that spark thoughts of sugar plums, Christmas trees, warm hearths, and puppies wearing knit sweaters.

Sierra Nevada’s Celebration Ale is a richly hopped ale that is meant to warm the bones. Pour this beer into a glass and admire its bright amber color which resembles the glow of fading embers. Celebration Ale starts off smooth and crisp and ends with a strong bite. Intense pine and citrus aromas cut the bitter finish to balance out the overall drinking experience. This 1994 United States Beer Tasting Championship gold medal winning ale should be paired up with holiday meals, which feature rich meats, such as prime rib and lamb that will hold up to the beers full flavor.

The most versatile winter brew available is Samuel Adams Winter Lager. The dark brown lager’s comforting ginger and cinnamon aromas wrestle off the winter chill. Its robust flavor with subtle hints of orange peel allows it to be paired with almost any spiced meal. This is the most practical of winter blends because it follows an everyday beer formula of full body and balanced hops. If you enjoy Sam’s Boston Lager you should enjoy this seasonal variation which picked up the gold medal at the Wine and Spirit International Beer Challenge in London, England.

If you are just looking for a brew to lift your spirits then pop your Nat King Cole Christmas album in the radio and pour yourself a stein of Harpoon’s Winter Warmer. This copper colored blend is all about the spice. The medium body style allows the cinnamon and nutmeg to take center stage from its silky start to crisp finish. This brew has a pumpkin pie-like fragrance and hints of caramel surface on the back of the tongue. Winter Warmer’s flavor is so uniquely spiced it really doesn’t pair well with any culinary dish. It is not an every day beer and should be enjoyed in small amounts; otherwise it’s too much of a good thing. This was Harpoon’s first attempt at a seasonal beer and as their website states, “It was designed to be enjoyed during the holiday season.”

You can count on local news stations sending correspondents to the closest Home Depot to beef up their non-stop “Blizzard of ’07” coverage by asking New Englanders, “What did you stock up on?” We all know the answer, rock salt and shovels. If you don’t know how to extract snow from your driveway, you deserve to be plowed into a snow bank and stuck there till the spring thaw. Here is a useful snow storm tip: stay inside and pour a few of these beers; they were crafted specifically to make your winter more enjoyable.