Friday, July 23, 2010

Going Suds Up: The Best Soccer, The Best Beers

By Kirsten Schlewitz / Senior West Coast Beer and Aston Villa Correspondent

Sorry to have abandoned you all last week, but I was off vacationing in sunny San Diego. In fact, I was doing research for this very column. In just three days I sampled over thirty beers, just so I could be suitably informed on the absolute best beers-to-soccer pairings. It’s tough being a soccer and beer writer.

What’s on your TV this weekend? Besides a bunch of MLS friendlies, not much is on national TV.

Except, of course, the Women’s U-20 World Cup and the USWNT against Nigeria on Sunday morning. Which, I might add, is being shown live at the crazy time of 4:30am CT, on ESPNU and I guess it is in Germany, but wow, I thought getting up at 4:30am for the men’s WC was insane—this would be 2:30am for me. But for you dedicated U-20 fans, or for anyone who plans to finish the night out by winding down with a match, I have a perfect beer for you:

Pizza Port Coffee Monster. If you are anywhere near Carlsbad Pizza Port in Southern California, grab your growler and run down to fill it with this delicious beer. Skip the morning coffee and just drink this sucker. It smells exactly—exactly—like coffee. I know I recommend coffee beers for morning matches quite often, but this is probably the best coffee beer I’ve ever had. It tastes like freshly brewed espresso with just the faintest hint of chocolate. But be warned, it packs a 9.3% ABV. Just like the USA women. One might be tempted to think they’re just sweet and innocent, patronizingly challenging them to a game of soccer, but they’ll knock you on your ass.

Not looking to get up so early, or stay up so late? Well, y’all, I don’t want to get in the habit of over-recommending the Sounders, but their match against the Colorado Rapids is the only non-friendly on national television this weekend (Sunday at 9:30pm CT on Fox Soccer Channel). Considering I am absolutely against teams promoting friendlies in the middle of a season—how many professional leagues are willing to do this?—I refuse to feature one of these. So in honor of the ridiculous rumors that have been swirling around Seattle for the past couple weeks, I give you:

Green Flash Extra Pale. I Found this at Tap Room in San Diego. Very light gold with just the tiniest bit of off-white foam on top. Very grassy and fresh aroma. The taste is awfully earthy, and every so slightly bitter. Not that this sounds like a soon-to-be-ex-Sounder or anything…

About Kirsten:

Ever since Brazil caught my eye during the 1994 World Cup I’ve considered myself a soccer fan, but it wasn’t until the summer 2008 that I decided to find a club. I focused on the Premier League and eventually chose Aston Villa. Initially drawn in by the pretty clarets and blues, I found I liked their organization, their owner and their manager. I fell hard and now it’s too late—I can’t give them up. As for MLS, that was easy, as I live in Seattle. I also support Exeter FC, SSC Napoli, FC Koln, Estudiantes Tecos and Tooting & Mitcham FC, all for a variety of reasons including cider, tattoos, scarves, owls, and a soccer player texting while on the pitch. I’m the Managing Editor of SB Nation’s Aston Villa site, 7500 to Holte. I also will be contributing to Two Footed Tackle after the World Cup.

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"Anyone who tells me soccer is boring, I'm going to punch them in the face."
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