The Perfect Beer For Fans of Every NFL Team
By Templars Staff Blogger Dave Drury
I love beer. I also love football. And seeing as how tomorrow marks the NFL’s opening day, when the Kansas City Chiefs head to Foxboro, Massachusetts to take on the New England Patriots, this would be a good time to write something up about football and beer.
I thought there’s no better way to incorporate the two than by pairing off every NFL team with the best craft beer from their community.
So what are parameters for this? Easy, there were only three:
- Must be craft beer and not owned by AB InBev or any of the other major players.
- Must be located within 75 miles of the team’s stadium.
- Must be sold in cans/bottles outside of the brewery.
And so with that…away we go!
*all pictures were taken from the brewery’s website.
Arizona Cardinals – Arizona Wilderness Refuge IPA (Gilbert, AZ; 35 miles)
For the Cardinals picking the brewery was no contest. There’s one Phoenix brewery that has topped all others since their inception back in 2013 – Arizona Wilderness. Their Refuge IPA was rated as the best IPA in the state last year and is a great take on a West Coast style IPA. So Cardinal fans can take refuge in this beer after watching their team struggle to win the division over the Seahawks.
Atlanta Falcons - Creature Comforts Tropicalia (Athens, GA; 71.6 miles)
Another easy pick was this beer (although, at 72 miles from Atlanta, it almost didn’t meet the criteria). Tropicalia has consistently been one of the highest rated beers from the state of Georgia. And while the Falcons might not be as consistent, at least fans know they’ll have a beer that won’t let them down.
Baltimore Ravens - Heavy Seas Blackbeard’s Breakfast (Halethrope, MD; 6.1 miles)
This imperial coffee porter might only be available when the Raven don’t play (May-June) but it’s still the perfect beer for them. Strong, dark, and complex. Plus at 10% ABV it can make you forget just how bad the last two seasons have been in Baltimore.
Buffalo Bills - Big Ditch Packet (Lock IPA Series #1) (Buffalo, NY; 12.3 miles)
This juicy hop-bomb of an IPA is easy to drink while still packing a punch with its 7.2% ABV. And fans seem to love it, as it has a 4.27 rating on Untappd. It’ll keep you warm during those winter games while allowing you to forget that the first two QBs on your depth chart are Tyrod Taylor and T.J. Yates....who both have concussions.
Carolina Panthers - NoDa Hop, Drop ‘n Roll (Charlotte, NC; 3.2 miles)
This West Coast IPA from the East Coast has been a fan favorite for a while now. It also won Gold at the 2014 World Beer Cup...so yeah, it’s good. I’d bet Cam Newton probably has one...or five of these after each game to numb the pain of all the hits he takes.
Chicago Bears - Maplewood Juice Pants Series (Chicago, IL; 7.7 miles)
Every few months Maplewood comes out with another beer in their Juice Pants Series that utilizes the same recipe just with different hops. The 7% juicy IPA tastes so good that most people forget just how bad the Bears have drafted since...well, since ever. Maplewood is also a really good up and coming brewery...just like Bears fans hope Mitch Trubisky will turn out to be. But, unlike Trubisky, we don’t have to give an arm and a leg to try Juice Pants out.
Cincinnati Bengals - Rhinegeist Ink (Cincinnati, OH; 1.6 miles)
Rhinegeist is one of, if not the the highest rated brewery in Cincy. A lot of their brews are pale ales or IPAs but not this one. This one is different (just like the Bengals hope their season will be this year). Ink is an imperial stout that many Bengal fans will use to wipe away the memory of another first round playoff loss this year. And, at 10% ABV, it won't take many of them to do the job.
Cleveland Browns - Fat Head’s Hop Juju (Middleburg Heights, OH; 18 miles)
It’s no shock the Browns are terrible and fans will need a super strong beer to get through this season. Especially now that DeShone Kizer is named starting QB. Fat Head’s has just the beer for you...and it’s guaranteed to be better than the Browns. Hop Juju is a 9% imperial IPA that has won a heap of awards including three medals at the GABF and it just took home the gold at the 2016 World Beer Cup. So while the Browns won't be winning anything anytime soon...it least your beer has, Cleveland!
Dallas Cowboys - Community Beer Company Legion (Dallas, 18.9 miles)
Could there be a more perfect name for a beer brewed in Dallas for Cowboy fans? There are a legion of Cowboy fans all of which seem to be loud and obnoxious (especially after last years’ performance). And, after drinking this 9.9% Russian imperial stout, you too might become just as obnoxious.
Denver Broncos - Dad & Dudes Breweria Dank IPA (Aurora, CO; 18.3 miles)
Dad & Dudes created the world’s first beer to be infused with cannabis oil...but that just got shut down by the government. So, unfortunately, Coloradans will have to settle for their next best beer - Dank IPA....which might not have weed extract in it but it sure seems like it. Proving that even the fans know you hafta be high to think the Broncos will beat out the Chiefs or Raiders this season.
Detroit Lions - B. Nektar Slice of Life (Ferndale, MI; 10.2 miles)
Nektar is a meadery that also makes ciders and a couple brews. And even though mead and cider aren’t technically beers...can you call what the Lions play technically football? If so, then this counts too. Slice of Life is a cider made with ginger and lemon juice and is quite tart with a nice spice to it. The only thing more sour than this beer will be Lions fans come January.
Green Bay Packers - Stillmank Tailgater (Green Bay, WI; 5.4 miles)
The Packers have controlled the NFC North the past decade or so. And their fans know it...and they won’t let you forget it. So how do you celebrate that dominance? By throwing a big party before each game and drinking Tailgater...a blonde ale with local-made apple cider added.
Houston Texans - Saint Arnold 5 O’Clock Pils (Houston, TX; 14.9 miles)
Houston is slightly lagging in beer compared to Austin and Dallas but St. Arnold gives Texans fans something they desperately need...a beer they can get drunk on after watching the team. This Czech pils is slightly hoppier than most but every bit as tasty and really easy to drink, so even if the team isn’t palatable this year...5 O’Clock Pils is at least.
Indianapolis Colts - Sun King Lupulin Astronaut (Indianapolis, IN; 2.4 miles)
The Colts are going to need Lupulin Astronaut to fall back on because the odds of them doing much better than .500 this year are pretty astronomical. And, Lupulin Astronaut is released at the perfect time for Colts fan, as a winter seasonal (January-March). So once week 16 ends, those mourning people in Indianapolis can grab a four-pack of this brew.
Jacksonville Jaguars - Bold City 1901 Roasted Red (Jacksonville, FL; 4.4 miles)
This red ale is actually named for the fire the city had back in 1901, which was one of the worst in Florida history...but it could also represent what opponents have done to the Jags since 2010 (the last year the Jags made it to .500), as they’ve been roasted by most teams for the better part of a decade. This red is made with extra roasted barley to make it just a tad bit smokier than most and help you wash away the memories of another subpar season.
Kansas City Chiefs - Torn Label Bloody Christmas (Kansas City, MO; 7.3 miles)
I know many of you were expecting a beer from Boulevard here but Bloody Christmas is shaping up to be a much better representation of the Chiefs season. Bloody Christmas is a Belgian stout made with blood oranges that packs a punch at 8.1% and is crazy interesting...much like the Chiefs season might be now that Spencer Ware is lost for the year.
Los Angeles Chargers - Absolution The Convert (Torrence, CA; 5.7 miles)
This California common lager is perfect for the Chargers because no one in LA really wanted them there in the first place...so they’re going to have to convert a LOT of people into being fans. Luckily the yeast they used in the beer does better at warmer temperatures because the Chargers are on the hot seat in LA.
Los Angeles Rams - Barley Forge Future Tripping (Costa Mesa, CA; 39.5 miles)
Barley Forge might not be as close to LA as some other breweries but their Future Tripping DIPA is perfect for the Rams because it lets fans know what to expect...they’ll be tripping up this year, and for the next few, unless Jared Goff actually pans out.
Miami Dolphins - Due South Category 5 (Boynton Beach, FL; 47.8 miles)
The Dolphins are going to need some help this season getting past the Patriots. And the only way they don’t get beat by the Patriots is if there is a category 5 hurricane that cancels the games. That’s why this super hoppy, super citrusy double IPA is the perfect companion for Miami fans.
Minnesota Vikings - Surly Furious (Minneapolis, MN; 3.4 miles)
Furious and surly are exactly what Viking fans will be at the end of this season with Sam Bradford as their starting quarterback...because, while he did alright last year, he’s much of an improvement from Teddy Bridgewater and, after all, the Packers still have Aaron Rodgers. At least they’ll beat the Bears.
New England Patriots - Notch Infinite Jest (Salem, MA; 49.4 miles)
Notch might not be the biggest or most well known of the New England breweries...but their Infinite Jest, a hoppy pale wheat ale, is perfect for the Patriots. Because that’s what the Pats see the rest of the NFL...a joke. They know they’re going to win. They may have to cheat to do it...but they know they’ll win...and then they do.
New Orleans Saints - NOLA Rebirth (New Orleans, LA; 3.2 miles)
Saints fans are hoping to see a rebirth from Adrian Peterson and Drew Brees to the good old days of five years ago. Because right now, after three straight 7-9 seasons, the fans in NOLA don’t have much to cheer (about except their beer).
New York Giants - River Horse Hippotizing (Ewing Township, NJ; 59.6 miles)
Watching that one catch OBJ had a few years ago we were all hypnotized. Now watching how bad the Giants have become is just as hypnotizing...luckily there’s a beer to break that spell. And this half-West Coast IPA/half NE IPA is just that.
New York Jets - Grimm Super You (Brooklyn, NYC, NY; 13.3 miles)
The Jets don’t have a whole lot going for them at the moment...and the only way they’llmake any noise in their division is if they stumble upon some super powers. While Grimm’s Super You, a pineapple gose with sea salt and oak, might not actually give them any special abilities it will at least it’ll make the season seem a bit brighter...because right now it looks kind of grim.
Oakland Raiders - Drake’s The Void (San Leandro, CA; 3.6 miles)
Raiders fans hope Marshawn Lynch will fill the void this year and get the Raiders back on top. And it’s possible he could. But in the event he doesn’t you can always fall back on this HUGE 17.5% ABV monster of a stout from Drake’s. Aged for 16+ months in rye whiskey barrels and peppered with Belgian Candi sugar...this very limited beer is hard to find but, like Lynch, it’ll be worth it.
Philadelphia Eagles - Yards Rival IPA (Philadelphia, PA; 6.1 miles)
The NFC East is full of rivalries so it’s no surprise that everyone seems to hate the Eagles. And while their football team might struggle to get wins against the Cowboys, Redskins, and Giants... at least their fans won’t have to choke down bad beer. Rival IPA is balanced, sweet, and good...unlike the Eagles.
Pittsburgh Steelers - Full Pint All In (North Versailles, PA; 16.7 miles)
Steelers fans know that Big Ben won't be around much longer...and that means this year he has to go all-in if he’s going to bring another title to Pittsburgh. This amber ale is the perfect companion for Steeler fans because, once he gets injured again, they can drink away the pain with darker amber ale.
San Francisco 49ers - 21st Amendment Down to Earth (San Leandro, CA; 29.8 miles)
Down to Earth is a super easy to drink session IPA that’s perfect for Niner fans. The team has been in disrepair for a while now and brought them back down to earth. They don’t have Steve Young or Jerry Rice to fall back on now...but they do have some really good beer.
Seattle Seahawks - Fist Tale Hodgson’s Bitter End (Olympia, WA; 60.6 miles)
The Seahawks are the best team to beat in the NFC West but aren’t good enough to take home the crown this year. So Fish Tale’s Bitter End is the perfect beer for them, as that is most likely how this season will end for the fans in Seattle. Although this year can’t possibly end in a more bitter way than the 2015 Super Bowl.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Cigar City Invasion (Tampa, FL; 1.3 miles)
Sure I could have went with Cigar City’s more popular Jai Alai but that doesn’t quite fit with what the Bucs are trying to do this year. They’re trying to invade the playoffs for the first time since 2007. And, while they didn’t do too bad last season, we’ll see if Jameis Winston can actually get them there this year. Otherwise, fans will be invading Cigar City after each game to drink away their sorrows.
Tennessee Titans - Turtle Anarchy Another Way to Rye (Nashville, TN; 6.1 miles)
The Titans seem like they have enough talent to get to the playoffs but they alway seem to find a way to lose the important games. This slightly spicy rye IPA is perfect for Titans fans because it’s so true...they. And if not...if they make the playoffs...it’ll be turtle anarchy.
Washington Redskins - Lost Rhino Face Plant IPA (Ashburn, VA; 49.0 miles)
Face plant is not only the perfect description for what the Redskins can expect this year but it’s also the perfect beer for them. Kirk Cousins wants out, they don’t have much offense, the defense is spotty, and they’re in a tough division. Luckily fans in DC can have a beer with just as much bitterness as they’ll feel for their team come January.