The Feast of Saint Patrick finds its origins (Where else?) in Ireland in the ninth or tenth century, and was placed on the Catholic Church’s liturgical calendar in the 1600s. Once a solemn holy day, March 17 has grown into something much more fun: An occasion to drink as the Irish do. All day long.
Who needs green beer, when you’ve got stouts and ales?
Founder’s Brewing Company Kentucky Breakfast Stout
It’s got breakfast in the title: Why wouldn’t you drink Founder’s Brewing Company’s Kentucky Breakfast Stout for breakfast on St. Patrick’s Day, or any other day for that matter? It’s the coffee lover’s consummate beer. Brewed with an abundance of flaked oats, bitter and imported chocolates, and two types of coffee, this stout has an intense fresh-roasted java nose topped with a frothy, cinnamon-colored head that goes forever.
Dogfish Head Black & Blue
Fermented with black raspberries and blueberries, Dogfish Head Black & Blue goes down easy; maybe too easy: The high alcohol content in this Belgian-style golden ale will sneak up on you, so maybe have just one with your French toast.
Water. Drink water.
Bell’s Expedition Stout
Today, the Russians are Irish, too!
One of the earliest examples of the Russian Imperial Stout in the United States, Expedition Stout offers immensely complex flavors crafted specifically with vintage aging in mind, as its profile will continue to mature and develop over the years. A huge malt body is matched to a heady blend of chocolate, dark fruits, and other aromas. Intensely bitter in its early months, the flavors will slowly meld and grow in depth as the beer ages.
Water. Drink water. The best is yet to come.
North Coast Brewing Company Old No. 38 Stout
Named for a retired California Western Railroad steam engine on the Fort Bragg to Willits run through the Redwoods, Old No. 38 Stout — a genuine Dublin Dry — is a smooth, firm-bodied stout with the toasted character and coffee notes of dark malts and roasted barley.
Great Lakes Brewing Company Conway’s Irish Ale
This traditional Irish Ale pays homage to Saint Patrick — of course, as all good Irish Ales do — but also to Patrick Conway, grandfather of co-owners Patrick and Daniel, and a Cleveland policeman who directed traffic near the Brewery for nearly 25 years. This sweet, roasty brew pairs best with a well-deserved hot meal after a hard day’s work. (Err, drink.)