Beer Tasting Featured Regular Members — 20 November 2012

We at the Illinois Craft Brewers Guild love Thanksgiving! What’s not to like? You pretty much have free reign to be a glutton for 24 hours. We were a little concerned that wine seems to be the beverage of choice at the Thanksgiving table. Our Field Correspondents took it upon themselves to find Illinois-brewed beer that would pair with the various courses of a traditional Thanksgiving feast. All of the beers mentioned are currently available from either a brewery, brewpub, or local beer shop. We hope you enjoy our recommendations and remember: enjoy Illinois craft beer this holiday season!

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Jessica Murphy (@grlslikebeertoo)


Pre-Game Session Beer:
Haymarket Pub & Brewery Speakerswagon Pilsner is a crisp and moderately hoppy take on a traditional Pilsner. It is a great option to enjoy all day while slaving away in the kitchen or lounging on the couch watching football. This beer is complex enough to appeal to your beer geek cousin while still approachable to your lite-lager-loving family members. Pick up a growler or three at Haymarket Pub and Brewery located in the West Loop at the corner of Randolph and Halsted.

 

Appetizer Beer:
A relative newcomer to the Chicago craft beer scene, Pipeworks Brewing is producing some truly unique brews. Well Read Temptress is an elegant, tart Berliner Weisse brewed with raspberries and pairs really well with hors d’oeuvres. Despite the complex flavors, this beer only clocks in at 4% alcohol by volume (ABV) so it can be enjoyed without fear of embarrassing yourself in front of your family. Twenty-two ounce bombers of Pipeworks’s Well Read Temptress are available at fine beer retailers across the city of Chicago and surrounding suburbs.

 

 

 

Dinner Beer:
I love Saisons and I think this earthy, spicy style of beer is a great accompaniment to every meal. Revolution Brewing Coup d’Etat Saison fits the bill and would pair well with a roast turkey dinner with all the trimmings. Thanks to the new production brewery, you can pick up a 22-ounce bottle of Coup d’Etat at local beer retailers around the city of Chicago.

 

Dessert Beer:
Personally, I would rather have a nice snifter of beer than a slice of Sarah Lee Pumpkin Pie. Three Floyds Brewing Alpha Klaus fits the bill and is a rich, chocolaty holiday porter brewed with English chocolate malt and Mexican sugar. Twenty-two ounce bombers are available at beer retailers throughout Chicagoland.

 

 

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  Ethan Rusin (@midwestbeerblog)

 

Pre-Game Session Beer:
Golden Arm from Piece Pizzeria and Brewery is a 5.0% ABV Kolsch that has won numerous medals at the Great American Beer Festival (GABF) and the World Beer Cup. It is light, crisp, and an easy drinking beer that goes well with football and some pre-Thanksgiving cooking. If available, I recommend you enjoy this Kolsch in a Strange. If one is not available, a pint glass will do. This beer is available by growler at the brewpub located in Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood.

 

Dinner Beer:
Bottom Up Wit from Chicago’s Revolution Brewing couples well with stuffing and turkey. This wit beer is relatively low in ABV (5.0%) and is spiced with coriander and orange peel. Also, this beer could be a good beer to use to baste the turkey. I have never tried it myself, but it could be fun to try. I recommend enjoying this beer in a weizen glass.

 

 

 

Dessert Beer:
Pipeworks Last Kiss Wee Heavy would pair well with a sweet dessert (such as pecan pie). It is also sturdy enough (9.5 %) where it would prep you for a nice, long, post-dinner nap. This beer has hints of smoke, chocolate, and a creamy quality that makes it a beer that would suffice as a dessert on its own. Enjoy this beer in a pint glass.

 

Post-Dessert/Night Cap/Midnight Snack Beer:
The roast and subtle chocolate qualities of Half Acre’s Chub Stub porter make it a very enjoyable brew; I have a difficult time limiting myself to just one! I recommend enjoying this beer in a pint glass.

 

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                        Kim Leshinski (@hailtotheale)

 

Pre-Game Session Beer:
Domaine DuPage from Two Brothers Brewing Company is a well-balanced French Country Style Ale. It is smooth and aromatic with notes of biscuit, caramel and a slightly hopped finish. Pairs perfectly with the buzz you’ll need before the in-laws arrive. Best enjoyed in a tulip glass.

 

 

Appetizer Beer:
Why let wine be the hero of every party when there are beers that pair perfectly with cheeses, dips and spreads? Oubliette from Naperville brewery Solemn Oath has aromas of spicy yeast with tropical fruit upfront, followed by a nicely spiced finish – it’s a crowd pleaser. This beer is available by growler fill at the brewery. Best enjoyed in a tulip glass.

 

 

 

Dinner Beer:
Showcasing eight shiny medals from GABF and World Cup, Flossmoor Station Pullman Brown is the Michael Phelps of Brown Ales (minus the Speedo). The smooth yet robust body generously sweetened with molasses is a perfect pairing for ham, sweet potatoes and cranberry sauce. Twenty-two ounce bombers are available at beer stores across Chicagoland. Best enjoyed in a pint glass.

 

 

 

Dessert Beer:
Quakerbridge Barley Wine from Half Acre (formerly known as “Marty Stouffer’s Wild America Barley Wine”) is an adventuresome 10% beer that packs a punch. With notes of caramel, brown sugar, pine and a sweet malty body, this beer will put those decadent pies in a headlock. Twenty-two ounce bombers are available at the brewery with some limited availability at beer stores in Chicago. Best enjoyed in a snifter glass.

 

 

 

 

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The Illinois Craft Brewers Guild is a non-profit organization founded in 1997 dedicated to promote the development and expansion of the craft beer industry in Illinois. Follow them at @illinoisbeer on twitter.

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