The Spectacle Blog

Three Beers for Your Weekend

By on 2.14.14 | 12:46PM

Beer. The carbonated nectar of the gods. Older than wine, substitute for water, and social adhesive. 

Yes, I do love a good brew. There is also an utter lack of alcohol-related posts on this blog, despite our “Great American Saloon Series” in the magazine.

I am hoping to change that.

Every now and then I will recommend different types of beer from around the nation. I will mostly point to craft beers, as I am a beer evangelist of sorts. There’s a beer for everybody, and I hope to find one for all.

I must tip my hat to Matt Naham (@Matt__Naham) of Rare for his great Super Bowl beer piece. He inspired me to do this.

Now, on to my three recommendations for the cold and snowy weekend.

1. Trumer Pils

If you’re only just entering the world of craft brews from the cold and barren Siberia of Anheuser-Busch and MillerCoors, this is your wide doorway. Smooth, tasty, and quaffable.

Trumer, produced in Berkeley, Calif., is a traditional lager. That means it is brewed with only four ingredients: water, yeast, barley malt, and hops. Great for all seasons, its low alcohol volume means you can have a few in a sitting. It has a subtle taste of straw on the finish. Give it a try; you won’t regret it.

2. Third Shift Amber Lager

I had no idea who the “Band Of Brewers” encircling the bottom of the label were when I tried this. Turns out the supposed “Band” is MillerCoors.

It's surprising that this beer comes from such an established corporation. This is heavy for a lager; it almost tastes and feels like a brown ale with its caramel finish. Its medium-bodied sense and dark-gold tint could have almost fooled me.

Lagers don’t have to be yellow and plain. “Lagering” simply means that the beer is stored and matured at a cool temperature after fermentation. It also means that the beer is made with certain bottom-sinking yeasts that can live at cooler temperatures than ale yeasts.

Third Shift certainly retains the crispness of a lager. Check this one out if you want a step up from pilsners.

3. Highland Gaelic Ale

I just discovered this brewery recently at a Total Wine. Based in Asheville, North Carolina, the Highland Scotsman on the label caught my eye, as well as its unique name.

While I don’t know how “Gaelic” it actually is, it's certainly a conventional American amber ale. Amber ales are a cross between pale ales and brown ales, and this definitely hit the mark.

Its balance is certainly noteworthy. It has just the right proportion of citrusy hop invigoration to malty finish in the throat.

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