If my "Fall Into Christmas" musings didn't clue you into the fact that I love that time of year and everything it brings me, beer especially, than allow me to further expound on the merriest of seasons: Christmas.
Religion/Faith/Spirituality/Whatever doesn't change the timeless heart of Christmas: good will. Without good will there are no joys, no moments of memory, no love to share, and no hope. Whether a family member, friend, acquaintance, or total stranger, the spirit of Christmas is infinite and boundless.
Christmas beer and the diverse family of brewers who brew them know this to be especially true. Whatever stylings the beer may take the shape of, it is without a doubt that brewer's well-wishes and good will for all his faithful drinkers and for humanity in-kind.
But just what constitutes a Christmas beer?
As a style in the most basic of explanations, a Christmas beer is any beer brewed specifically for and released only during the Christmas season. That's it. Nothing complicated or overly dramatic. In this case especially, simple is truly best.
The beers themselves though are usually anything but simple. The beers most commonly associated with Christmas are rich, deep, warming, and spiced with the flavors, aromas, and good will of the season. But again, there is no one style for Christmas beers as exampled by the many other various offerings: crisp ales, golden pilsner, and playful saisons to name a few. All a beer geek needs to rely on is their timely and limited release during the Christmas season.
I'll take a Christmas beer over candy canes, eggnog (how can people drink that nasty stuff), fruitcake, and cookies without hesitation. The best presents don't come in boxes. Instead, they come in bottles tied up with ribbons, topped by a bow, and looking for a tender-loving home to bless.
As with all things beer in this world, fear not the beer but fear itself. No matter what style she is, don't be shy.
Pour it. Smell it. Savor it. Share it.
Then repeat said indulgence over and over again until the spoils of Christmas are no more. At least, not until the next merry season is upon us.
I don't know about you, but I am thirsty, the fridge is lonely, and there is a full tank of gas in my car. I can see it now...
Coming this winter to the Treasure Coast of Florida:
Kristyn's Christmas Beer Road Trip Bonanza!
(an original written work by Kristyn Lier. plagiarism is not tolerated)