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The Internet is rife with Thanksgiving-themed beer pairings, so we’ve elected to take a slightly different tack. This year why not drink beer made with the ingredients of all your Thanksgiving foods instead of eating the same old tired feast? It’ll save you time in the kitchen, guaranteed.
If you insist on cooking and need some good beer advice, you can always head over to Michael Jackson’s site for Thanksgiving pairing tips, which still hold true after more than twenty-five years. The San Francisco Examiner has some good pairing suggestions, and Serious Eats has some very good recommendations for beers to enjoy with the turkey feast as well as the T-day piefest. Beer Advocate has a practical guide to holiday beer pairing, as well. But enough of that silliness. Let’s drink dinner this year:
CRANBERRY SAUCE – Unibroue Ephemere Cranberry: This beer was out last year, but we haven’t seen it since the spring. If you can’t find Unibroue, you can always snag a Sam Adams Cranberry Lambic. It’s not actually a lambic but it is very easy to find right now.
SWEET POTATO – Allagash Fluxus 2009: This year’s anniversary beer was brewed with sweet potatoes. The recipe was concocted with Southern flair by Allagash brewer DeeDee Germain. We saw it on draft at The Reef and Birreria Paradiso last month, and in the bottle at AB Liquor Store in Adams Morgan.
STUFFING – Craftsman Triple White Sage: Yup, there are a few beers made with sage. We definitely saw this beer somewhere recently but are afraid it was in Brooklyn, not in DC. If you’re willing to go for something savory but not as classically Thanksgiving, a few herby beers we’ve tried lately include Stone’s Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale, and Dogfish Head Black Thai, the latter of which was on cask at ChurchKey this weekend. Both have a basil thing going on.
TURKEY – Your choice: Okay, so brewers haven’t gotten crazy enough to start making beer with turkey, but there is a connection. Beer has been shown to suppress the degradation of tryptophan, so if you end up eating this part of your dinner instead of drinking it, you’re likely to feel nice and drowsy as the turkey and beer do a seratonin number on your brain.
PUMPKIN PIE – Any Pumpkin Beer Still on the Shelves: Our favorites are Dogfish Head, Southern Tier, and Weyerbacher pumpkin ales, but it will probably be difficult to find them this late in the season. Any will do if the goal is a traditional but liquid Thanksgiving.