Friday, October 1, 2010

Going Suds Up: The Best Beers, The Best Soccer

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

Good news, beer fans! I’ve just found the world’s greatest bottle shop, and that combined with the ever-increasing amount of matches available on TV or via clear internet connections means that I can serve you even better—at least, I can until my money runs out and I can’t afford the good stuff anymore.

Your match of the week this week is Chelsea v Arsenal, which will be shown on Fox Soccer Channel (and Fox Sports Net) on Sunday at 10am CT (if you get SoccerAmerica’s emails, be warned, they have it listed under Saturday. It’s a Sunday match). While I considered covering what amounts to a derby between L.A. Galaxy and Chivas USA, but with the Goats effectively out of the playoffs, it’s clear that the match between the two London clubs holding down the top of the Premier League has to win out.

For this match, pick up Bridgeport Hop Harvest. It pours golden, like the pretty pretty leaves. The smell is fairly faint, but a good IPA usually is. This one has a bit of floral and brown sugar. It’s a really balanced brew, tasting fresh, of roses and grapefruit. Certainly not an overwhelming, typical west coast IPA. So why do I choose this to represent the top two teams in the league? It’s to remind everyone that this is still October. Chelsea’s one loss is not as big a deal as the stories make it out to be, and Arsenal’s stumbles against lower-tier opposition will likely mean little come May.

And for our second recommended match of the weekend, tune in on Saturday for GolTv for Hamburg v Kaiserslautern at 8:30am PT. Yes, it might be a bit early for drinking (Editor's Note: It is NEVER too early for drinking), but realize, this is the last weekend of Oktoberfest. Join in with the Bavarians by celebrating one of their lesser-known football clubs (mostly because they’re not Bayern) and raising a glass of Ayinger Oktober Fest- Märzen. This one has a unique aroma, of roses and caramel, with a sweet taste and nutty finish. A perfect beer to celebrate the oddness that is the Bundesliga right now.

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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