Now that I've finally found two Christmas beers I can stand -- Great Lakes Christmas Ale and Prairie Christmas Bomb -- I'm a little more interested in what beers are actually drunk on Christmas. Because I had no inclination to save a beer for that day, much less those two beers. I'm currently saving a 2013 Bourbon County Brand Stout Rye and a 2014 Barrel-Aged Old Rasputin, but those will be soiffed on New Years, when it's all about drinking.
Maybe your Christmas is all about drinking, but it won't be the feature at mine. So what sort of beer actually gets drunk on this day of Christian and capatilist revelry? Let's check to see what happened last year on Christmas Day.
First, by quantity alone, the top 20:
|Anheuser-Busch (ABInBev)||Bud Light||2.666107732||38466|
|Miller Brewing Company||Miller Lite||2.799133762||33709|
|Yuengling Brewery||Traditional Lager||3.628736392||31782|
|Coors Brewing Company||Coors Light||2.723440908||31637|
|Lagunitas Brewing Company||IPA||3.888205953||31075|
|Pabst Brewing Company||Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR)||2.96370347||28584|
|New Belgium Brewing Company||Fat Tire||3.653030136||27243|
|Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.||Pale Ale||3.768370845||26836|
|Stella Artois (ABInBev)||Stella Artois||3.36334442||26157|
|Coors Brewing Company||Blue Moon Belgian White||3.610739591||25122|
|Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)||Rebel IPA||3.53456||25000|
|Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)||Samuel Adams Boston Lager||3.524679211||24393|
|Grupo Modelo S.A. de C.V.||Corona Extra||3.112555512||23193|
|Ballast Point Brewing & Spirits||Sculpin IPA||4.227600735||22311|
|Founders Brewing Company||All Day IPA (Session Ale)||3.834989391||19323|
|Stone Brewing Co.||Stone IPA||3.946299179||18631|
|Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.||Torpedo Extra IPA||3.868877438||18048|
There really isn't a surprise here. Sam Adams had just released Rebel IPA, so that's probably why it was feeling good last Christmas. The other beers are just the big beers, and they might even do better that day then they would on any other day. (You are, after all, going to hang with family, and they're not all craft beer fans.)
Let's convert these numbers to a percentage of the day's checkins, and then compare to another random day. Say... December 21, 2013. Why not. Here are the beers that had the biggest positive difference in percentage of the day's checkins. In other words, these beers saw the biggest boost from Christmas as a day, or as a thing.
|Brewery||Beer||Score||Count||Xmas %||21st %||Diff|
|Samuel Adams||Rebel IPA||3.53||25000||0.00237||0.00233||0.00004|
|Samuel Adams||Cold Snap||3.51||16294||0.00155||0.00151||0.00003|
|Samuel Adams||Samuel Adams Summer Ale||3.50||14795||0.00140||0.00138||0.00003|
|Stone||Go To IPA||3.85||12176||0.00116||0.00113||0.00002|
|Deschutes||Fresh Squeezed IPA||4.05||11695||0.00111||0.00109||0.00002|
|Jacob Leinenkugel||Summer Shandy||3.69||13023||0.00124||0.00121||0.00002|
|Samuel Adams||Samuel Adams Octoberfest||3.72||16086||0.00153||0.00150||0.00002|
|Stone||Stone Enjoy By 02.14.14 IPA||4.36||7466||0.00071||0.00069||0.00002|
|Founders||All Day IPA (Session Ale)||3.83||19323||0.00183||0.00182||0.00002|
|Stone||Grapefruit Slam IPA||3.81||5731||0.00054||0.00053||0.00001|
|Lagunitas||Night Time Ale||3.93||5711||0.00054||0.00053||0.00001|
|Magic Hat||Dream Machine||3.41||5587||0.00053||0.00052||0.00001|
|Rogue Ales||7 Hop IPA||3.97||5343||0.00051||0.00050||0.00001|
|Lagunitas||A Little Sumpin' Extra! Ale||4.10||5220||0.00050||0.00048||0.00001|
|Green Flash Brewing Co.||West Coast Double Ipa||3.97||5182||0.00049||0.00048||0.00001|
Now we're getting some different results. Snapshot from New Belgium and Widmer's Hefeweizen makes two wheat beers in the top 20. Maybe that makes sense. Wheat beers are often gateway beers: here, Mom, it's light and easy but has more taste than that one over there. Maybe you could say the same for Go To IPA and the Founder's All Day. Or maybe those were just released that winter.
What is up with the summer beers. The Summer Shandy and the Sammy Summer... maybe that's about finding the beer you left at your parents' place in the summer, and swallowing hard before popping the top? I mean, four days before, people didn't want to drink that beer. Then all of a sudden, the summer beers start popping up on Christmas. Could be the weird back of fridge phenomenon.
Are we going to have a repeat this year? Deschutes' Fresh Squeezed is out again right now, and it's the only beer in the top five Christmas Boost Beers with a four-star average. Perhaps it'll get a boost again this Christmas?
And, since we're likely to take some time off in the next week, let's use the comments here to talk about the beers we'll be having this Christmas! A defacto holiday chat session.
Whatever you celebrate, we hope you have a good week. Enjoy reponsibly, or just give someone your keys and do whatever the hell you want.