Hope you and your family had a wonderful holiday! Merry Christmas everyone!
Friday's Brew: Samuel Adams Winter Lager
Had a nice dinner out with my fiancee and parents for Christmas Eve. Not many beers on tap at the restaurant where we went, but they did have Sam Adams Winter Lager, and it's always a winner. After Octoberfest, Winter is my favorite from the Sam Adams brewery. It's a dark lager brewed with spices - notable are cinnamon and nutmeg.
Saturday's Brew: Leinenkugel Classic Amber
Christmas Day feast with family, so I wanted something tasty but not heavy. Enter Leinenkugel Classic Amber. It's not a remarkable beer, but it does have a pleasant taste, and it paired very well with the entire holiday meal (turkey, ham, potatoes, green bean casserole, etc.). There is very little hop characteristic, but the taste is still smooth - never heavy. Don't pay a lot for this beer - but if it's on sale, it's a good choice.
Sunday's Brew: Spoetzl Brewing Company - Shiner 101
The brewery famous for the popular Shiner Bock actually makes quite a selection of fine beers. Spoetzel is located deep in the heart of Texas, and is one of the first "micro" breweries that I ever experienced. They're much larger now, but the recipes are still consistently good.
Shiner 101 is a special pilsner, brewed to commemorate the brewery's 101st anniversary. It's crisp, clean and leans toward the Czech-style of pils - but without as much hop bite. After trying this beer twice in the last few months, I've decided that I don't like it as much as some other Shiner offerings, but it's still a good, lighter-style beer.
Friday's Cue: Mannheim Steamroller - Stille Nacht
I've loved this version of Silent Night ever since it came out in the mid-80's. A simply beautiful interpretation.
Saturday's Cue: Dean Martin - Baby, It's Cold Outside
I've heard this song in (seemingly) a thousand different variations for years, but somehow the Dean Martin original eluded me until this year. This is, simply, the best of the lot.
Sunday's Cue: Bruno Mars - Just The Way You Are
Has there been a Top 40 song this year that Bruno Mars has not been on? This is the guy's year. Even if you don't enjoy the rap music that Mars lends his singing voice to, do yourself a favor and check out his solo album, Doo-Wops & Hooligans. It's an enjoyable throw-back to late '80s-early '90s new soul.