I have a special Christmas present for you that is so amazing, it may or may not rival the birth of Christ. Over the next couple of weeks, I am going to be counting down to Christmas with 12 wintery beers that are sure to put a jingle in your jangle (I’m unsure if that phrase has sexual connotations, but I’m okay with it either way).
So, what are the benefits of this 12 days of Christmas theme? Let’s count them:
1) You will get to read a new beer pairing everyday until Christmas Eve – a gift that keeps on giving even when you tell it “No. NO! DAMMIT, I SAID NO!”
2) You will come to understand the breadth of festive ales and lagers available to you this Holiday season.
Alright, let’s get started. Day one of the countdown begins with Noel De Calabaza, a “Special Ale” brewed by Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales. This dark, Belgian strong ale is sure to be better than anything you get in your stocking this year, unless you get a severed foot because that’s funny.
Noel de Calabaza is brewed to taste like all sorts of Christmasy Chrap, and as with every Jolly Pumpkin ale, it’s undergone a secondary fermentation process with wild yeast. The result is a lovely cherry/berry tartness with swirls of spice and, of course, a great oak flavor from the barrels it’s been aged in. It such a pleasantly sour beer, it will quickly make its way onto your Christmas wish list alongside two front teeth, a hippopotamus, world peace, and a DIY lobotomy kit.
In keeping with the 12 days of Christmas theme, all beer pairings during this time will be paired with the gifts given in the song, “The Twelve Days of Christmas.” Obviously. In order to do this, I am supposed to enlist a “true love” to give them all to me, but I think that goes against my sacred vows of marriage. So instead, I will be receiving these gifts from a different type of love: a Questlove.
That’s right, Questlove, the drummer from The Roots, currently the in-house band of The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, is going to be sending me each gift from “The Twelve Days of Christmas” song, in sequence, to pair with each Christmas beer I feature through December 24th.
The only problem? Questlove has been drumming for a very long time, and I’m afraid his hearing is starting to go. He’s already forewarned me that he thinks he might have misheard some of the lyrics from the carol, but assures me that he’ll do his best to send me the appropriate present in accordance with the song. Let’s see how he did!
On the first day of Christmas, my Questlove gave to me: “A partridge in a bear tree.”
Okay, well, thanks Questlove. And to everyone else, enjoy pairing Noel de Calabaza with a dead bird.