Each week throughout the football season I'm going to suggest a good beer for the ubiquitous pre-game tailgate. Let's be honest, with tailgates it's not always top quality that you're looking for. To steal a phrase from the heinous beer terrorists at Budweiser, you want "drinkability." (or what a real beer connoisseur calls "a session beer") So, be warned, these may not be "the best" beers around. But, in the words of Dave Chappelle as Samuel L. Jackson "IT'LL GET YOU DRUNK!"
Much of the Pac-12 resides in states where craft brewing is not only prevalent, but a cultural way of life. Colorado, California, and Oregon have some of the strongest brewing traditions the nation has to offer. Hundreds of breweries dot these states, showcasing some of the best brews in the nation.
The rest of the Pac-12, however, including the great State of Arizona, can be a little lacking in brewing culture. I'm not saying that there aren't craft breweries in the state, just that they're not the quality of some of the others that dot the Pac-12 landscape. So, note to Arizonans: work on that.
To the matter at hand... I was at a loss this week. With Arizona lacking in high-profile brewing culture, what the hell am I supposed to use to select a suitable beer? After a few frustrating minutes racking my brain, I just gave up and went the mascot route. As is usually the case, I turned my eyes to the local craft brewing titans at Avery. :What's that one Belgian with the devil on the label? White Rascal?" Shrugging my shoulders, I've picked Avery's White Rascal as my tailgate beer-o-the-week.
At least for my purposes they decided to put some sort of demon/devil thing on the label (Deviously Delicious!"). That's kind of like a Devil, right? Possibly one who comes from the Sun? A reach, to be sure, but what else can I go with?
I threw the question out to the twitter folk (follow me @rumblinbuffalo, btw) and none of the responses really struck me as appropriate. I'm trying to stay away from reflexively naming an IPA each week, so Hop Devil from Victory was out, and the Demon series, also from Avery, is composed of beers far too large to be a "session" beer. So White Rascal it is.
I don't even like White Rascal. Too Belgian for my tastes. (the Belgian people are ever so nice, but I just don't like the yeasts they use in their beer.) However, I'm fully aware many people like that sort of thing, and that White Rascal is a hit in that community of White Ale fans. It's a nice, light brew, tweaked with hints of orange and coriander, which compliment the style nicely. Think of it like an unfiltered Blue Moon, only with balls. Very refreshing, and a nice change of pace from typical tailgate beers.
While I may not personally like the style, this is a great brew. Give it a try, you may even find that you like the taste of Belgian yeast. It even comes in convenient cans, perfect for bringing to a tailgate. Drink your beer, damnit!
Happy Friday! Go Buffs, Beat the Spread!