Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours! Hopefully, you spent it with good friends, family and a plate or two of good food; but most importantly I hope that you enjoyed your meal with a good beer. If you were disappointed with the selection at your aunt and uncle’s place, do yourself a favor and pick up a bottle of New Glarus Raspberry Tart, a Wisconsin Framboise Ale made with real Oregon berries, to drink with the plates and plates of seconds you were undoubtedly sent home with.
Thanksgiving in my family is largely a wine drinking event, so this New Glarus brew is a wonderful alternative for those of us like myself, who find red wine gives them headaches but still want something more flavorful than light beer. More than that though, it is the perfect introduction into the beer world for your family members who are exclusively wine drinkers. Like most belgian-style framboises, Raspberry Tart is a fruit driven, slightly sour and effervescent beer that is best served for special occasions. That New Glarus packages it in wine bottles belies this fact since once it is opened it has to be consumed before it goes flat, ruining the drinking experience all together.
I find this ale is a perfect match for the classic Thanksgiving Day meal of turkey, dressing, cranberries, potatoes and gravy. The strong flavor of tart raspberry pairs with the dressing and turkey similarly to the cranberries while the slight sourness helps cut through the fat of the turkey and gravy to cleanse the palate between bites. Beyond just the taste this beer pours a beautiful, sparkling ruby red with a luscious bouquet of raspberry aroma.
Skeptical, your family will slowly try a taste of the ale, filling small flutes and passing the bottle to the next person until the last drops fall into the glass. Through your gift of New Glarus, they will be amazed at the possibilities of beer and may perhaps fall out of love for their white zinfandels and chardonnays for a new adventurous mistress. At the very least, you will be able to enjoy a great holiday meal with a superb beer in your glass.
Best Enjoyed: In tall, slender flutes with a small group of friends or family.
Best Paired With: The plates of seconds sitting in your fridge and that last piece of pumpkin pie.
Where to Find: Only in Wisconsin, but believe me–it’s worth the trip.