Talkin’ Turkey… and Beer

Turkey Caps Thanksgiving

Turkey Caps Thanksgiving

Talkin’ Turkey … and Beer

We asked 7 beer experts from around the country to weigh in on their top beer choices for pairing with this year’s Thanksgiving Turkey. Here are their responses:

Jay R Brooks

Jay R Brooks

Beer writer who was recently knighted (“enthroned” ) into The Knighthood of the Brewers’ Mash staff (Belgian brewers’ Guild) 

Jay told us: “Anchor Christmas Ale
is always my go-to.”

Anchor Christmas 2004 & 2006
Jen & Christopher Lively

Christopher Lively

Another recent knight  of the Brewers’ Mash Staff and owner of the famous and often #1 rated beer bar in the world-  Ebenezer’s Pub in Lovell, Maine, as well as the Lion’s Pride in Brunswick and Lively Brewing Co.

Chris had a list for us broken down by categories:

Import: De Struise Brouwers Tsjeeses
US: Allagash Interlude 2014
Vintage: Brooklyn GrandCru 2009
Old Standby: Westmalle Tripel
My Brewery: Holy Candy Tripel

De Struise Brouwers Tsjeeses

 Bob Sylvester

Bob Sylvester

Owner/Brewer at Saint Somewhere Brewing

“Well, I’d be lying if I didn’t say (Saint Somewhere) Saison Athene. Rosemary and black pepper play well with turkey and dressing! Other than that…Cantillon Gueuze.”

Cantillon Classic Gueuze


 Funky Buddha Ryan Sentz

Ryan Sentz

Owner/Brewer at The Funky Buddha Brewery

“I would probably pair with something like Saison Dupont. If I was going for a shameless plug, I think our Cranberry Berliner or Sweet Potato Casserole would be nice!”

Saison Dupont

 Sean Paxton

Sean Paxton

 Beer Writer, Executive Chef/Owner at The Home Brew Chef

“…Love to play with some of the traditional flavors of Thanksgiving that are used in some beers like The Bruery’s Autumn Maple, Pecan Porter and some of the pumpkin beers. But turkey pairs wonderfully with malty beers, such as Bocks, Doppelbocks, Dunkle, English Brown, Roggenbier, Rauchbier… All those wonderful melanodin flavors with the roasted turkey are perfect pairs.”

The Bruery Autumn Maple

 Lisa Morrison

Lisa Morrison

Beer writer, owner of Belmont Station Bottle Shop and Biercafe, Dame (The female term for someone who has been knighted) of the Knighthood of the Brewers’ Mash staff and Beer O’Clock! Radio Show Host/Producer

“I’m going with a saison this year. I’m probably going to go with The Commons Brewery Urban Farmhouse from here in Portland, but another more readily available one that would be good is Le Merle from North Coast.  I also plan to try Deschutes new Zarabanda Saison!.”
 Brian Strumke Owner/Brewer, Stillwater Artisanal Ales

Brian Strumke

 Owner/Brewer, Stillwater Artisanal Ales

“Outside of my own beers (Cellar Door & Autumnal are excellent Thanksgiving beers) I would have to say Orval… it’s earthy funk from the brett and hop spiciness make it a great pairing with the bird, stuffing, or even brussel sprouts.”


What is your go to Thanksgiving beer? Are you trying something new? Let us know if you come up with the perfect pairing! And whatever your choices are, enjoy!