BAAM! We’re back, Drinkers!
Now that Thanksgiving is over, it means that it is now unequivocally Christmas time which I, like most Americans, associate with snow. Growing up in New England, there are a few things that stick with me when it comes to wintertime. And while beer was not part of my childhood (because that would be weird and irresponsibly of my parents), the 1990 Chris Columbus directed, John Hughes written, Macaulay Culkin vehicle Home Alone ranks amongst the most memorable and formative pieces of my youth. And though my opinions, and tastes, may have developed a little over the years, I still get excited by the memory of curling up and watching a great movie on a snow day. So let’s get snowed in!
I actually haven’t seen Home Alone in quite some time but it’s incredible how many little details I remembered (and forgot). But what has remained the same is that this movie is still simply fun. Sure Macaulay Culkin’s character is inexplicably violent and kind of an asshole, but that doesn’t mean he and his home-defenses aren’t lovable. I mean, he learns to appreciate the importance of family and unconditional love, so we can forgive him for sticking a nail in a guys foot and lighting Joe Pesci’s head on fire. Right? Another thing that hasn’t changed over the years is how creepy this movie can get. Remember the furnace in the basement? That thing is terrifying! And it doesn’t help that the John Williams score is equal parts scary basement, happy childhood and Christmas hymnal. Truly eerie. To be fair though, the score is fantastic. For a 90’s kids movie, the music actually stands out and is worth paying attention to. Plus, there’s some polka music thrown in there just for good measure.
I also have a few final remarks that I feel just need to be said regarding this film.
1) The crooks in the movie are arguably the worst crooks ever. Ever.
2) Macaulay Culkin calls the cops only after he has tortured the home invaders.
3) I think every boy, at some point in his life, wished he could be this much of a badass.
4) This movie has an inexplicably good cast. Joe Pesci. Catherine O’Hara. John Heard. John Candy. Yeah, I know.
5) This is one of the few films I have seen that has convincing and realistic snow. I’m being serious. Home Alone got its snow right.
Okay enough with the kids movie, let’s drink some beer! New Belgium describes their Snow Day as a “Midnight Wheat” with some serious hoppiness. Now, I have no idea what a Midnight Wheat is (does that undermine my authority?) but I can tell you how I feel about this beer and its mad hops. This dark, caramel-y beer is a simple and hearty winter ale that would be perfect for a New England snow day. Like several other New Belgium brews, this beer is dark, bitter and hoppy but is still remarkably drinkable. While the hoppiness is the defining feature of this beer, you still manage to get some of those holiday spices filtering in underneath, which adds a nice layer of complexity to this beer. Sure it’s not the greatest winter ale ever but Snow Day is just another example of how New Belgium is able to make potentially difficult beers very accesible to casual drinkers. Now sadly we don’t get any snow here in Los Angeles, but if I never need a snow day, I think I know where I’ll turn. And if you’d like a second opinion on this beer, check out our friend’s review over at A Cap A Day. She does some great reviews and has some beautiful beer-related photography as well. Check it out!
And there you go. BAAM (yup, sticking with it) is back in action, so be on the lookout for some more combos. Home Alone and New Belgium’s Snow Day was a great combo to kick off our holiday season. Home Alone is still a good time and Snow Day is a solid beer to be drinking while watching a movie for kids…yeeaaahh….
Oh and I’m drinking IPA’s again. So that’s happening.
Tonight’s Tasting Notes:
New Belgium’s Snow Day Winter Ale:
Dark, caramel color
Bitter hoppiness as a primary flavor
Very accessible dark, winter beer
Still a classic. Can’t outgrow this one
Surprising and haunting score by John Williams
Macaulay Culkin’s character has some serious rage issues he should address