The Super Bowl is historically one of the biggest days of the year for beer consumption. Whether you're a fan of one of the big brews or, like me, find yourself seeking out Yuengling, Shiner Bock or something more exotic, beer and football are a natural combination.
Patriots fans have Samuel Adams, in all its various incarnations, as a hometown brew, along with various great local craft brews.
New Yorkers have a plethora of local brews to choose from. If you're a fan who doesn't live in the city, try the New York Beer Guide to see if there's a Big Apple brew available in your area.
But say you're not a beer drinker. Maybe you just don't like it, or maybe you prefer the more immediate impact of distilled spirits to fuel your celebratory ardor. If you're a Pats fan, you've got to track down some Cold River vodka. It's made in Maine, and is one of the few premium vodkas around made from potatoes, not grain, which means it's gluten-free. The classic vodka has a richness that I haven't found in grain-based vodkas, and the Wild Maine Blueberry variety is great on the rocks. The aroma alone will get you interested.
Cold River makes gin, too, although I haven't yet sampled it so I'll reserve judgment. I'm fairly sure it would be worth your investment, though.
Of course, there may be kids at your party. And believe it or not, the authorities frown upon serving cocktails to toddlers. Times sure have changed since I was a tot. (There's also a chance you may have non-drinking adults and/or designated drivers at the party.) I've made a discovery recently that will delight your palate and take you back to the days when sodas didn't taste heavy and leave your tongue feeling like it was coated with corn syrup.
The Pop Shoppe, a Canadian soda company that's been around since 1969, is mixing up everything from classic black cherry soda and root beer to a lime ricky that will wake up your face. Their website has a search function so you can find out if you're lucky enough to be able to get some in your area.
And, finally, courtesy of Patron Spirits, a few recipes to add variety to your menu. These are all tested, sampled and most emphatically approved by your humble scribe.
The Incredible Grapefruit
1 oz. Patrón Silver
.25 oz. Patrón Citrónge
1 oz. Fresh Grapefruit Juice
Splash of club soda
3 Lime wedges
METHOD: Muddle lime wedges into a mixing glass, then add Patrón Silver, Patrón Citrónge, and grapefruit juice. Shake well. Strain into rocks glass. Top with splash of club soda and a squeezed lime wedge on top.
2 oz. Patrón Reposado Tequila
.5 oz. Fresh Lime Juice
1 oz. Elixir G Ginger Mix
METHOD: Combine ingredients in a mixing glass with ice. Shake well. Strain into a glass over ice.
The Ultimat Superhero
1.5 oz. Ultimat Vodka
2.5 oz. White Grape Juice
.5 oz. Lemon juice