Friday, August 20, 2010

Going Suds Up: The Best Beers, The Best Soccer

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

The Premier League is back! Which, I guess we learned after last week’s massive tome on beers to accompany each team. Suddenly there is a wealth of soccer on TV in the States—so why is it that it seems Fox Soccer keeps wanting to show me West Brom v Chelsea? I mean, I love Frank Lampard and still there are only so many times I can watch the Baggies get bulldozed by the Blues.

So if you want a break from FSC, and a chance to watch a match while winding down from a hard week, I recommend catching Estudiantes Tecos v San Luis at 8PM CT on Galavision. I declared myself a Tecos supporter sometime earlier this year, but haven’t watched much of them. I confess, it was more of a “Owls seem cool” situation than anything else.

For this match, I recommend Dogfish Head "Punkin" Ale (Milton, Delaware). Guadalajara, where Tecos play, is known for its pipián, a type of mole, which is made with pumpkin or squash seeds. Punkin Ale should be available soon—I’m just giving you a head start. This one pours a pale orange and smells of nutmeg and brown sugar. Tastes of toasted sugar, cinnamon, a bit of ginger: basically the essence of pumpkin pie. When you find this beer, grab it.

Saturday and Sunday are overloaded with matches. I’d like to give you something for Monday, for a late lunch at the bar while watching Manchester City v Liverpool at 2pm CT on ESPN2. Victory "Scarlet Fire" (Downington, Pennsylvania) has been rotating through taps this summer, so if you see it at your local beer bar give it a try. This rauchbier pours copper with plenty of white clings. Aroma is toasted malt, brown sugar, and a subtle smokey note--not overwhelming at all. Tastes smoked but not overdone, spicy, background of sugars. And I went with the scarlet beer as I’ve got to choose the Reds over Manchester City in this match.

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 contribute to Two Footed Tackle.

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