Getting Festive. 12th Day

Pelican Brewing Co – Bad Santa

Style: Black IPA / Cascadian Dark Ale

ABV: 7.5%

Size: 355ml (Bottle)

Getting Festive.

Sampling 12 beers over Christmas calls for at least one ‘festive beer’ right? At least I thought that was the right ratio. Festive beers are often brewed seasonally, to celebrate major holidays; especially Halloween and Thanksgiving – where pumpkin beers dominate due to their association with each – and Christmas – where often dark or spiced beers dominate for obvious reasons.

I had two of Oregon’s finest to choose from thanks to a shipment from my brother, who resides in the Willamette Valley and was in town for work. In a choice between Rogue’s Santa’s Private Reserve and this one, I chose Pelican as after doing some research, I discovered that while Rogue is a big brewery making great beers, Pelican pride themselves on small batch, high quality beers with a focus on food and beer matching at their beachside brewery-cum-restaurant in Pacific City, Oregon.

My festive choice, Pelican Brewing's Bad Santa
My festive choice, Pelican Brewing’s Bad Santa

The Oregon Coast is famous for it beaches and most notable is the setting of some of the most memorable movies of my childhood; The Goonies, Short Circuit, and Kindergarten Cop. But Oregon is also famous for its association with craft beer. Four of the top 50 Craft Breweries in the US are from Oregon (which isn’t the biggest; California takes that title with 8) but with its sparse population the key driver is the fact that Oregon and the surrounding Pacific Northwest states are one of the biggest hop producing regions in the world.

While marketed as a Cascadian Dark Ale, the rear label reveals this is a Back IPA
While marketed as a Cascadian Dark Ale, the rear label reveals this is a Black IPA

Back to the beer. This is labeled a Cascadian Dark Ale, however with a quick rotation of the bottle the labeling on the back reveals that it is in fact a Black IPA. And a hell of a smooth one too. So smooth it masks the 7.5% ABV. I was dinking this while prepping New Years Eve dinner for my wife. Maybe it was the beer, maybe it was the giddiness of being NYE but this beer was gone much quicker than is customary and proved a great way to celebrate my final participation in the Beer O’Clock Show’s #12beersofxmas.

My accompaniment to prepping my New years Eve dinner
My accompaniment to prepping my New Years Eve dinner

Thanks to everyone who read, retweeted and liked my posts and tweets. I’ll be posting a wrap up shortly. However, based on the response, its convinced me to keep going in 2016!



Author: Michael Lally

London-based Australian blogger, podcaster and wannabe photographer. Looking to tell great stories about the world of craft beer and the have conversations with the people behind the craft beer scene in the UK.

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