Growlers Reviews

The Ultimate Star Wars Beer Pairing

Like peanut butter and chocolate, Star Wars and beer just go together and with winter setting in here in North America, there’s sure to be a lot of watching of Star Wars now that all six films are available on blu-ray.  So in that vein, we present the Star Wars Beer Pairing.  James normally writes about the beer around here and while I don’t know much other than what he’s taught me, I do know Star Wars thanks to my two boys who are utterly obsessed with all things Star Wars.

Spoiler alert: If you’re the last known person of legal drinking age who hasn’t seen the Star Wars films, plot details are covered here.

Note before you send us more email/vmail noting we’re covering in the wrong chronological order, you’re wrong. Let’s begin with our Ultimate Star Wars Beer Pairing… And Han shot first.  Also we still hate Jar Jar. If you find this message, send to our email for a special prize

Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope
Deschutes Fresh Hop Mirror Pond Pale Ale
Alc. 5% | IBU 40 | Bend, OR
A new hope deserves a new hop, and that means fresh hopped beer.  First up, Deschutes Fresh Hop Mirror Pond Ale.  Toasty yet with a citrus note, this fresh take on the traditional Mirror Pond Pale Ale, like a taste of summer in your mouth.  This is a natural classic, ageless just like the original Star Wars.

Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back
Great Divide Yeti Imperial Stout

Alc. 9.5% | IBU 70 | Denver, CO
Sure, it would be easy to pair with the Empire Strikes Back. The darkest chapter in the original trilogy with an epochal ending,  Han Solo frozen in carbonite and all, this movie starts on ice and ends with a chill.  Many childhood nightmares were unleashed worldwide when the Abominable Snowman attacks Luke, hangs him upside down while gnawing carcass (Hoth BBQ anyone?).  Then Luke gets all Jedi on us with that light saber, and our nightmare loses the same arm that mauled Lukes face.  An eye for an arm they say, and so we say the Great Divide Yeti Imperial Stout. Piney yet citrusy, this hoppy beer is one to be reckoned with – just like the Yeti on the ice planet of Hoth. +1 for referencing Imperials in the name.  Practice your best imperial line, “Rebel scum“.

Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi
Surly Brewing Company Surly Darkness
Alc. 9.6% | IBU 85 | Minnesota, WI
Judging by the 2011 label, this beer might go better with, “The Walking Dead“.  And like the zombie apocalypse, don’t turn your back on this beer, judging by the inky black color and rich head when pouring, or the coffee and chocolate scents that emanate.  I like to imagine Jabba’s Palace smelled like this beer, not the Rancor pit.  As darkly rich and raisin-like as Emperor Palpatine’s black heart, this is a rich, carbonated beer – perfect for watching Vader throw upper management under the bus.  At 95 IBU’s this beer will make you surly enough to kick an Ewok.

Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace
Lagunitas Lucky 13 Mondo Large Red Ale
Alc. 8.9%| IBU 77 | Petaluma, CA
Some of us are still trying to figure out what the Phantom Menace is in this movie.  After a few pints of Lucky 13, we all agree – Jar Jar Binks is the Phantom Menace.  We get to see young Anakin, the least annoying version participate in Pod races and yet there’s Jar Jar, ruining every scene.  It’s enough to make you want to skip forward.  Word to the wise Dads and Moms – Talk to your Kids about Jar Jar.

Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones
Russian River Pliny the Younger
Alc. 11% | IBU “Gobs” |  Santa Rosa, CA
Where to start with this one.  Pliny the Younger is remembered by history as a Roman author, lawyer, and a magistrate who witnessed the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius.  He had three wives, and liked to write a lot.  So what the hell does this have to do with Star Wars?  He had an Uncle, Pliny the Elder, who helped raise and educate his young nephew.  Sort of like Jango Fett cloning himself and making his son/nephew/mini-me which is almost as creepy as the Luke/Leia kiss.  But I digress.  Episode II also introduces a young Owen Skywalker, later referred to by Luke as, “Uncle Owen”.
Like Luke, this Triple Hopped wonder has an uncle as well- Pliny the Elder.  Both pour golden with notes of pine – a real crowd pleaser.

Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith
Three Floyds Dark Lord Russian Imperial Stout

Alc. 15% | IBU 45 | Muenster, IN
Ahh yes, the whiny annoyance of post-teen Anakin gives way to impatience, rage and the rise of the dark Lord Darth Vader.  What better beer to go with this one than the Dark Lord of beers.  Described as a, “Demonic” Russian Imperial Stout, infused with Intelligentsia coffee,  Mexican vanilla, and Indian sugar this beer defies description, available one day a year in April at the brewery, Dark Lord Day.  So you better be patient, but judging by the ratings on RateBeer.com and BeerAdvocate, it’s worth the wait.

Bonus Material
New England Imperial Stout Trooper
Alc. 9.2% | IBU 50 | Woodbridge, CT
Congratulations.  You made it to the end of the beginning.  Your reward is a Stout Trooper ale that’s perfect for the bonus discs.  Bold and earthy in its tones, with hints of citrus, coffee, and chocolate. Good luck finding this ale these days as we couldn’t even find it on the website and delivery seems to be local to NE, but these are sure to be a novelty bit of fun with friends.

Tip of the hat to George Lucas and my friends who worked at Skywalker Ranch – this is for you.  Have tips or suggestions for us, drop a line below.

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