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Game day beer picks: Syracuse vs. Miami

What are you drinking? And mostly, what am I drinking for this one?

NCAA Football: Miami at North Carolina State Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

Hopefully you’ve enjoyed the extra day off from football as much as the Syracuse Orange (4-3, 2-1) this week, basking in what’s been a pretty fun time for the program. But a new Saturday game day awaits, and that likely calls on some alcoholic beverages for an assist on the experience.

Syracuse visits the No. 8 Miami Hurricanes (5-0, 3-0) at 3:30 p.m. ET on Saturday, which lends itself to beer consumption on the East Coast — and maybe even some on the West Coast too, depending on how the contest goes.

So whether you’re imbibing before, during or after this matchup, see below for three beer picks that are worth your while. You probably won’t be able to acquire at least one of these. Sorry in advance.

Miami Beer Pick: J. Wakefield Brewing Miami Madness

J. Wakefield has considerable hype and by most accounts, they’re well worth the buzz. The featured beer here, Miami Madness, is a Berliner Weiss with mangoes, guava and passionfruit. It’s tart, sure, but the tropical fruits bring a refreshing character along with the traditional low ABV of the style. Berliner Weissbiers have been experiencing a bit of a renaissance these past couple years as brewers experiment new fruited combinations to highlight with the style. J. Wakefield’s doing it better than most.

Syracuse Area Beer Pick: Good Nature Farm Brewery Funk N Barrels Act 1

Aside from Hoodoo, Hamilton, N.Y. also provides some quality beer from Good Nature Farm Brewery -- an ample amount of which finds its way to nearby Syracuse. Funk N Barrels Act 1 is a boozy imperial porter with a whole lot going on. Chocolate’s on the front end, with espresso, vanilla, bourbon (among other things) also involved. And despite the barrel flavor you’ll get, it’s still at only 7.9% ABV. This one’s bottled, but you may have to go to the source.

Los Angeles Area Beer Pick: Arts District Brewing Sleeping Dragon

Just like it’s pretty tough for me to get the beers listed above, it’s going to be tough for any of you to get the beers listed in this section each week. But it would be irresponsible to celebrate local beers without highlighting some of the best from the exploding L.A. scene.

We mentioned a brewery in the Arts District (Boomtown) last week, but that doesn’t preclude us from dipping right back over to that neighborhood. Arts District Brewing makes a variety of styles very well, but the Sleeping Dragon Belgian Quad is among the most interesting to me. It’s not as hefty and filling as most Quads I’ve found. It actually manages to be a little sweet, with some roasted character to it as well. Plus it feels like it’s on the lighter side. It’s a perfect sidekick to a game of skee-ball when you’re at the brewery itself.


So what are you drinking? Share your own game day beer picks for the weekend below.