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Game day beer picks: Syracuse vs. Duke

Which one of these teams is getting the shorter pour on Saturday?

A Pint And A Half Of Ale photo by Mike Kemp/In PIctures via Getty Images

The Syracuse Orange football team is basically begging you to drink at this point. And that trend may continue on Saturday as SU travels down to Durham to face off with a reeling Duke Blue Devils squad. If not, well, you were drinking anyway.

Whether you made the trip down to Duke, or are watching this 4 p.m. start at home on ACC Network, read below for our beer picks for before, during and after the matchup. You probably won’t be able to acquire at least one of these. Sorry in advance.

Duke Area Beer Pick: Ponysaurus Biere de Garde

Among Durham’s best beer locales, you’ll find Ponysaurus — with what I’d contend is one of the better brewery logos around. Ponysaurus doesn’t aim for gimmicky beers or meme-worthy beer names. Instead, just sticking with nailing their styles right (which they do). Their Biere de Garde is a great example of such a practice, too. It’s a great nod to French farmhouse ales, combining subtle fruity notes with an earthier profile. Even if it drinks like a higher-gravity beer, you’re still looking at a very enjoyable 6.3% here; perfect for having a couple without any real negative effect.

Syracuse Area Beer Pick: Aurora Fresh Lobster

Aurora is an operation straight out of the Finger Lakes, just south of Aurora, N.Y. and overlooking Cayuga Lake. Fresh Lobster is a double New England IPA collaboration that they worked with The Fish Friar, a great seafood restaurant in downtown Syracuse. The mellowed galaxy bomb is brewed with local wildflower honey and even though it clocks in at 9.5% ABV, it drinks smooth, dangerously smooth. You can usually find their cans at any Syracuse area bottle shops.I still haven’t had a beer I didn’t like from Aurora and their penchant for 1990s hip-hop references only adds to the uniqueness. Currently available are The STZA, a Russian imperial stout; Fresh to Death, their flagship NEIPA; Don’t You Know I’m Loco, a Mexican lager among others. Some past naming gems include Goseface Killah (gose), Blubonic and Strawbonic Chronic (sour), K.R.E.A.M. (kolsch) and what’s become a favorite easy drinker of mine, Pilsmatic (pilsner).

Los Angeles Area Beer Pick: Modern Times DDH Booming Rollers

Don’t worry, San Diego, I’m not trying to claim Modern Times for us — however, the excellent Point Loma-based brewery does have a pretty great Downtown L.A. location, the Dankness Dojo. Double dry-hopped Booming Rollers is an impressive improvement on what was already one of their better staple releases. The Citra-forward IPA gets injected with even more flavor by way of dry-hopping with Motueka, Centennial, Citra Cryo and more Citra hops, and the result is a tasty and tropical brew that has some solid body while also being refreshing and crisp drink at the same time. Glad this one’s available in cans. It’s delicious and well worth some return trips while fresh.


How about you? What are you drinking this weekend?