Today’s Beer of Christmas is actually a beer I tried at The Beer Authority during that beer tour I did at the beginning of December (which, in fact, was also called the 12 Beers of Christmas…but I didn’t want to confuse you, and I also stole the name).
Anyway, the point is that this is a beer I had never had until just over a week ago. And I was so intrigued that I decided it deserved a spot on my countdown.
Eel River Brewing (Fortuna, CA) is a brewery I knew only a little about before last week. Since then, I have learned that all their beers are organic and they brew using sustainable methods. It’s pretty NoCal crunchy stuff, but I kind of like it.
Like many breweries, Eel River releases an annual holiday beer called Climax Noel.
Ok. Before we go any further, let’s be real. The name of this beer is kind of amazing.
It’s like Christmas and sex and beer all in one. (Sorry if that weirded you out, but that is literally all I can think of when I hear the name of this beer.)
Ok ok, moving on. Climax Noel is an Imperial Red Ale, which is a pretty unusual choice for the “annual winter seasonal” most breweries put out (HAHA put out). Sorry, I’m stuck on the sex thing.
Anyway, most breweries tend to release a winter warmer style, or a barrel-aged beer, or something much darker. Not to say that an Imperial Red isn’t plenty hearty (it’s over 9% abv), it’s just not a common style.
Not only was this an unusual winter seasonal, it was really, really good. I decided to start my day-drinking with this beer, and I have zero regrets. (This was also the day I spent 7 hours alone at a bar… But you know what, I don’t think I have any beers to blame for that. If anything, I should be thanking Eel River for helping me have a super awesome Sunday.)
So cheers to you, Climax Noel. May your Christmas be filled with lots of ups (*snicker*), and hopefully no downs.