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Saturday, February 06, 2010

On the Super Bowl

There are few days so closely associated with beer as the Super Bowl--though most of America will be tippling tinny "lite" from a can. Here in Oregon, we eschew such indecency. Since allowing our TV to go dead with the transition to digital, Sally an I now end up in front of screens elsewhere when we wish to catch sports. (Preferences: Blazers, Red Sox, Badgers, Packers.) So tomorrow, we have a vast array of choices. We'll probably end up at the Bagdad, where the screen is large enough to make it feel live, and where the seats are aplenty.

(That denizens of other cities toil without a theater-pub seems inconceivable. It has become old hat to me, but I was reminded of what sporting bounty we enjoy when Sally's brother, a fanatic fan from Boston, visited us a couple years ago. The Ducks had their season opener, and he wanted to sample some local culture, so we headed over to the Mission. His eyes were golf-ball wide as we came into to the theater proper and he said, "this is tremendous!" Oh yeah, I thought, I guess it is.)

But I digress. I started this post with the idea of commenting on beers of the competing states. Oon the one hand, Indiana, we have a fairly nice little state for beer--32 breweries in all. Far and away the most famous of these is Three Floyds, which currently has four beers ranked in the top 26 on BeerAdvocate's highest-rated list. On the other hand we have Louisiana, with a more modest nine breweries. Dixie is the most famous, but Abita the most admired. (Unfortunately, Dixie was ravaged by Katrina and is no longer brewing beer; the brands are contract brewed elsewhere.)

By any measure, the edge must go to Indiana (even if Beervanians have a reason to harbor suspicions about the devotion provoked by Three Floyds). Except: I've never had a beer from Three Floyds, but I have had a Turbodog from Abita. I live very near the Screen Door, a southern restaurant on 24th and Burnside, and the first time I went, an aficionado told me, "you must have the Turbodog." I did, and now I pass along the wisdom whenever we return with newbies. It is not the most accomplished beer made, but it somehow beguiles, not unlike a wet lab fresh from a river--wet and aromatic, but infectiously enthusiastic. Tomorrow I will be rooting for the little team from NOLA, whom all the critics say is inferior to the team from Indy. Three Floyds is a better beer too, say the critics, but I'll be thinking of Turbodog.

Plus, Drew Brees is way cooler than Peyton Manning.


  1. I just accidently deleted an astute comment about Brees, Purdue, and Indiana. Please re-post and I promise to hit the right button.

  2. The Albita Jackamo was pretty available in the GA, (when I was there a month ago,) and far better than turbo dog. watch for that one.

    I did look high and low for Three Floyds there, but to no avail, bummer.

  3. Abita TurboDog is coming along to our Super Bowl party today (so is a bottle of Full Sail's 'Black Gold' Bourbon Barrel IS for the victory celebration!). I grew up in Louisiana (Slidell, right outside New Orleans); this is one of those days that we Saints thought might never come...

    Re: Louisiana vs. Indiana beer...I've been to Three Floyds and had plenty of their beer, I've been to Abita and had plenty of theirs, too. Quality-wise, Indy wins by a wide-margin. But of course, my loyalties lie to the south and my earliest 'craft beer' recollections are of TD, Purple Haze, Wheat, Amber and the like...and, yes, Dixie...

    Saints win 41-38 on a last second field goal, and we party like we're on Bourbon Street all night long... :D

    Who Dat!
    Brian (msubulldog25)

  4. World Market always seems to have an array of Abita beers in stock. Turbo Dog and Purple Haze are usually there, but I've seen Jockamo and Pecan Harvest too.

    Until recently they have also had the best price on Elysian brews, < $3.00 per bomber. Last weekend we stopped in and noticed this had jumped to $4.00.

    And sorry Jeff, but Go Colts!


  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

  6. jeff save me embarrassment

    St. Louis has nowt to do with the Colts.

    Please delete my comment.


  7. Jack, no deletes on the comments! I'm constantly making gaffes and getting called to the carpet for them. Conflating Indiana and Missouri is the smallest of crimes. From Oregon, it all looks like "back east."

    Cheers, and congrats to the Saints!

  8. For 3 Floyds: TRY THE ROBERT THE BRUCE. Excellent, man... excellent.