In our endeavor to help you, the loyal Wisconsin fan, branch out and discover other (admittedly worse) parts of the country, we are starting a Bucky's 5th Quarter Barrel Beer Preview. Every week before we match up with the opposition, we will give you a beer suggestion from the very city/state our opponent is from! You should then pair it with your favorite Wisconsin beer and see who wins the game before the game, which is also known as the pre-game party.
So, let's talk about what Louisiana has to offer beerwise. We already know that Louisiana is an excellent state for drinking (New Orleans, Mardi Gras, Bourbon Street, LSU tailgates, these guys' apartment), but what of their craft beer scene? Many of you have probably heard of, and tried, beer from Abita Brewing in Abita Springs, Louisiana. Their ubiquitous Turbodog is an excellent dark brown ale and one you should definitely try next to Fat Squirrel.
The Game Before The Game
The Game Before The Game
Unfortunately for us here in the Midwest, almost no other Louisiana beer makes it this far north. I reached out to multiple LSU fans (and I'm assuming since they're LSU fans they're also experts on booze) on Twitter to get a few more local options and they turned up with multiple suggestions! A brewery that was mentioned a couple of times was Parish Brewing Company out of Broussard. Their distribution footprint is limited to the southeast corner of Louisiana, or the "toe of the boot" as they call it (note: I don't know if anyone calls it that, I've never been to Louisiana). Their flagship beer, as far as I can tell, is the Canebreak Wheat Ale. It is the first beer in the world that is brewed with locally made Steen's cane syrup, which is pretty cool. The beer that I most want to try from them is the Farmhouse IPA, their Belgian style IPA. Put this beer up next to Bedlam! from Ale Asylum and have yourself a pleasant afternoon tailgating in Houston.
So, my beer matchup recommendations are twofold for this opening week slugfest. If you're staying in the Midwest for the game, pick up some Turbodog and put it up against your favorite local brown ale (Fat Squirrel for Wisconsin, Goose Island Nut Brown in Chicago, Surly Bender in Minnesota). If you're headed down to Houston for the game, find an LSU fan on Twitter, Beer Advocate, /r/beer or /r/CFB that is going to the game and set up an in-person trade for some beer from Parish Brewing. Their Farmhouse IPA vs. Ale Asylum's Bedlam! is something I need to hear about.
I am unfortunately not making the trip to Houston this weekend for the game -- sometimes being a bartender means you have to work weekends. Weird, right? But, if you are going down to Texas for the game, I recommend bringing an extra 12-pack of your favorite Wisconsin brew and trying to find some friendly Tigers to trade with! Every single LSU fan I've spoken with on Twitter has been wonderful, and if they like to drink half as much as I think they do, they'll be bringing extra beer, too.
Wherever you are this weekend, drink somewhat responsibly (it is the first game of the season, I can't expect all of you to be completely responsible)!