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Game day beer picks: Syracuse vs. Clemson

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We help you plan ahead for what’s going to be a long day (and likely evening, too).

After the European elections - beer tent appearance Gabriel Photo by Matthias Balk/picture alliance via Getty Images

For numerous Syracuse Orange football fans, perhaps the last week has featured a bit more beer consumption than normal following the team’s humiliating defeat against Maryland on Saturday. But we, like the Orange, move on to the next game... which features a motivated No. 1 Clemson Tigers team rolling into the Dome for a 7:30 p.m. kick (on ABC for those watching from home).

No matter when (or if) you’re drinking before, during or after this game against Clemson, see below for beer picks that are worth your while. You probably won’t be able to acquire at least one of these. Sorry in advance.

Clemson Area Beer Pick: Carolina Bauernhaus 18 Mile Red

Always have to acknowledge a good Flanders Red, and this one — from nearby Carolina Bauernhaus — certainly qualifies. Using all local ingredients (including wine barrels) it features oaky and dark fruit notes mixed with the reasonable acidity you’ll usually find in the Belgian-style ale. It’s sour, but not overwhelmingly. A strong representation of the style that still maintains regional characteristics as well.

Syracuse Area Beer Pick: Middle Ages Dragonslayer Imperial Stout

When the number one team in the country comes to town, you need to break out the big (or boozy, in this case) guns. Middle Ages has been the rock that Syracuse craft beer has stood on for 24 years now. For a good number of them, they’ve been brewing their Russian Imperial Stout, Dragonslayer. Clocking in at a solid 9.5% ABV, with a rich chocolate flavor profile and not too much heat up front, it’s a great local choice. If you’re down there now, they also have a bourbon barrel aged 2017 varietal on draft that gives it a real strong barrel character. The brewery has also jumped on the experimental single batch New England IPA train. The series is on it’s 37th iteration and most have been real solid. They also have put out a NE IPA as their 24th anniversary beer in Dark Hollow.

Los Angeles Area Beer Pick: Beachwood Citraholic

It’s only appropriate that when talking about Syracuse, we focus on a Citra hops-focused IPA, no? Though Beachwood has branched into haze here and there, they’re still very much a West Coast IPA-focused shop and Citraholic has long been one of the staples in that lineup. Citra’s the star in this double dry-hopped and excellent beer that pushes tropical aromas from the start, and delivers on them in flavor. It’s 7.1% ABV, but you’d think it was a session because of how light and easy it drinks. A favorite for summer, but any other time of the year suits it just fine, too.

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How about you? What are you planning to drink this weekend?