COLUMN WRITTEN BY MATT BRASCH
For Digital First Media
For football fans, the Super Bowl is the culmination of a long, arduous season of dedication to your favorite team, and for many fans, the event is also tinged with sadness because “your team” is not playing in it.
For everyone else, the Super Bowl is an excuse to have a party on a cold Sunday night in February, highlighted by new commercials, buffalo wings, and of course, beer! So what beer should you serve at your Super Bowl party to satisfy both football fans and partygoers — especially this year which marks the 50th Super Bowl ever played?
The easiest suggestion is Budweiser’s commemorative bottles of Bud Light. Because Budweiser has the size and clout to obtain licensing rights from the NFL, the black metal bottle showcases the Lombardi Trophy in the center with a prominent “50” in gold to symbolize the Super Bowl’s golden anniversary. If you are a fan of the traditional American adjunct lager, this may be the one for you. If you are looking for a slightly different taste profile, you still might want to use the Bud Light as a decorative centerpiece for your party, then throw it away after the time clock hits 0:00.
There are also many local beers that would be appropriate for Super Bowl 50.
One fantastic choice is North Penn-based Prism Brewing Company’s “Red Zone,” their “football seasonal.” Released in the autumn “…when the leaves begin to change colors and you start to get that smell of fall in the air,” Red Zone is described at www.prismbeer.com as a “spiced ale…based on an Irish Red and is kicked up with cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice and Maple Syrup from Western Pennsylvania to give it that fall flavor you’ve been craving all summer long.” For more, check www.prismbeer.com/our-beers/red-zone/
Just in time for the Super Bowl’s golden anniversary, Vault Brewing Co. in Yardley is holding the next bottle release in their Artist Series, the “Belgian Golden Ale Trio.” Three variants on their Golden Ale include a Chardonnay Barrel Aged, Tequila Barrel Aged, and Apple Brandy Barrel Aged. All three bottles were released at noon, Sunday, Jan. 31 and were limited to two of each bottle per person, per transaction. Each 22-ounce bottle costs $15. Supply is limited and may be completely gone by the weekend, so if you are interested in the Belgian Golden Trio, it is suggested that you call in advance to make sure there are still some available. Check www.vaultbrewing.com/news-and-events/belgian-golden-ale-trio/
How about a “super” beer for the Super Bowl? Iron Hill Brewing in North Wales currently has its “Superbier” on draft, a “Belgian-style tripel brewed with Pilsner malt and a traditional strain of yeast that provides flavors of pear, banana and spice,” according to ironhillbrewery.com. At 8.6 percent, this is a nice sipping beer to get you through this year’s halftime show. It is not available in bottles or cans, but stop in with a growler on game day and you’ll be able to serve your guests some of the freshest beer available.
For those closely following Super Bowl 50 and the NFL, you know that one of the teams playing in the game is the Carolina Panthers. Coincidentally, a beer called “Nacho Panther” can be found on draft at Ardmore’s Tired Hands Brewpub. Brewed in collaboration with Fry Guys Brewing Company and described as a “Cola Stout,” it is “brewed with a plethora of specialty malts and spiced with citrus peel, kola nut, cinnamon and licorice root,” according to Tiredhands.com/café/beers, which combine to give it a flavor of an “old-fashioned soda-jerk cola.” Even better – 10 percent of all sales of Nacho Panther will be donated to First Book Philadelphia.
With so many options to choose from, there is no doubt that there is a Super Bowl beer for you. And if you find yourself struggling to make a decision on one beer – try several. Having multiple varieties of beer on hand will guarantee that your Super Bowl 50 party will be a success for football fans and beer fans alike.
Columnist Matt Brasch is a beer enthusiast and a lifelong Montgomery County resident. For more, go to http://thebrewholder.com and follow him on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram at “The Brewholder.”