No need to have bothered with Father’s Day this year.
The footy finals were only four days away when dads around the country woke up with screaming kids throwing hankies, socks and those cardboard ties made at primary school.
And while there were the clenched-teeth grins in delight, the man of the house’s real thoughts were about the chase of the pigskin. After all, it is the business end of the season.
The finals aren’t a sprint. They are a month of excitement. And every father – and mother for that matter – needs a battle plan for the most gruelling month of sports viewing.
This isn’t some wishy washy affair. It takes planning and determination to ensure the view of each match isn’t affected.
So to help the punters of September The Sip has devised a Footy Finals Beer Survival Guide.
Put them in your pack and you’ll navigate a way through the sporting jungle.
GAGE ROADS OPENER
You will die of thirst without it. A drink needs to be opened and this device will do the job. But fans need to make sure it is of a large size. It can never be too big. How many times have you heard, “anyone got the opener”. If it is big enough they can find it themselves. Self-sufficiency is very important in the wilds of the finals.
DR TIM’S CANS
No matter where you go to peruse the matches someone will be celebrating something else. Dr Tim Cooper, the boss of the Adelaide-based brewery, is recognising 60 years on the planet. And to mark the occasion he has produced a special 440ml can of Dr Tim’s Traditional Ale. Yet we get the present as the offering is being sold at the 375ml price. Cheers to Tim.
BRISBANE BEER - BALTER
This is more directed to the AFL fans around the country. There isn’t a Queensland team in the top eight and since it is customary to toast absent friends at a gathering it is apt that we recognise a banana-bending brew from the Maroons.
It is highly likely that the gatherings you attend will result in a smorgasbord of nectars. Some may bring Lagers, others Pale Ales, uncle Fred will naturally throw in a couple of Stouts and old Alice from next door likes a Cider. While we like to push the importance of appropriate glassware having all the necessary containers on hand is just not achievable. So go for the tulip glass. It can cover a few bases.
TWO BOTTLES OF CORONA
A cheap-arsed mate will always lob to watch the footy without any beer luggage. But he or she doesn’t deserve one of your special Stone India Pale Ales so make sure there are a couple of Mexico’s mediocre mixture on hand. The freeloader is most likely a big fan of Corona anyway. But serve without lemon or lime – the mate isn’t worth the splurge.
The AFL team from Glenferrie is perennial finalist. Hawthorn have won the past three flags and lost the grand final to Sydney in 2012. At some stage in September Cyril Rioli, Luke Hodge, Sam Mitchell or Jordan Lewis are going to pull off something special - again - and again. So what else would be better to be drinking at the time than a Hawthorn Brewing Company Amber Ale?
Not chips or crisps for our English friends. If changing from beer varieties over the course of four quarters it is important to have some dry biscuits on hand to clear the palate. A bit of cheese also helps but not too much. Let’s not forget here it is the taste than counts.
Circumstances could conspire against a fan and there could be an out clause that requires them to take it easy on the sip. If they want to stay well under the limit then reduced alcohol bevvies must be on the menu. Our workmate Reg Parsley has a lower strength go-to brew and it comes from Little Creatures. At 3.8 per cent, Rogers, provides the flavour without the hurt.
YOUR SIXPACK OF ___________
We left the space so you could add in your preference. The great thing about the craft beer explosion is that there are so many brews from which to choose. Line up five people against a bar and they’ll most likely confess to enjoying five different beers. Remember, this is the most important item of your finals pack. It isn't time to be too fancy, just perform as well as it has all season.
Someone is going to be cheering on grand final day. Premierships are tough to win and need to be celebrated with something special. At around $75 Clout Stout is a rare purchase. And there are only 700 around each year. But the flags will taste that much sweeter if you can hold up the trophy with one hand and Nail Brewing’s top shelf drop in the other.