When Long Island got plaster-crazed with about two feet of white powder recently, I did what any loving, responsible 25-year-old son still living in his parent’s house would have done.

Shovel the driveway?

No. That’s what sisters are for.

Form a small caroling group to sing holiday tunes at the neighborhood senior living facility?

No again. That’s what religious people are for.

Enjoy holiday beer at my make-believe Christmas party for one?


I have such holiday cheer. It really does amaze me at times.

I purchased the party materials earlier in the week when I first heard about the approaching MEGA EXTREME LIFE-ALTERING BLIZZARD OF DESTRUCTION 2009, and spent the next few days in anticipation of the snowfall, and the cuddly sips of yum beer near a fire-encasing contraption (see: fireplace) that would follow. When it finally came, was I ever ready!

Education break: holiday ales are generally heavier than your average brew, with a sweet, comforting taste (usually of caramel, due to the malt preparation) and scents of strong spices and dark fruit. They also tend to have cooler labels with demonic elves and names like Santa’s Butt Porter.

For my holiday party, I went with two BSDA’s: Delirium Noël and Gouden Carolus Noël.

The Delirium had a real spicy aroma, with a nose of pepper and candied apple, and tasted of raisins, plums and again, candied apple. Not great (a bit of a sour aftertaste), but decent and easy to drink considering its high ABV of 10.00%.

I definitely enjoyed the Carolus more, with its smooth cherry/black licorice/plum/chocolate taste, though it was much harder to take down (the alcohol was very present, and at times thought it was hard liquor inside a beer bottle) than the Delirium and had to be sipped slowly. Minor complaint, really, as the Carolus was delicious, full, and an excellent way to end the night.

Now that you know my story, what did you drink during the blizzard?

niko krommydas

Niko Krommydas has written for Tasting Table, BeerAdvocate, Munchies, and First We Feast. He is editor of Craft Beer New York, an app for the iPhone, and a columnist for Yankee Brew News. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.