5 Christmas Beers to Add to Your List

by: Tierney Pomone
December 12, 2014
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It’s the Holiday season, so naturally I’m already shopped-out, haven’t even put up a tree yet, and am dreading the snow. Can you tell I love winter? The one thing that I do love this time of year is Christmas beers! With their fig, chocolate, fruit, and mostly boozy flavors they’re great for relaxing at home snowed in after a long day of making Christmas with friend and family.

While Mad Elf will always be my personal favorite, there are many more out there that are worth trying.

Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale

sierra nevada celebration

Every year this beer is an afterthought for me until I go to a party and they have it and I’m reminded how delicious it truly is. First brewed in 1981 (that’s older than me for the record), Celebration Ale is a very hop-forward holiday ale focusing on Cascade, Centennial, and Chinook hops that are well balanced by a teeny caramel malt undertone. Expect citrus and pine hop flavor in this one. It’s perfect to take to parties as it’s not sweet like most holiday-esque brews. Even your friends who are “just getting into IPAs” will love this brew.

Editor’s note: The 2014 version is outstanding. An editor favorite.

Southern Tier 2Xmas

Total opposite of the above-mentioned Celebration Ale, Southern Tier 2XMAS is a very heavily spiced ale, or as they call it a Double Spiced Ale, has intense flavors of fig, orange, cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, and clove. These winter spices scream Christmas at Gramma’s house. The brew was inspired a party where Glögg, a Scandinavian hot mulled wine, was served and matches it color-wise in a deep amber appearance. This beer definitely isn’t for everyone, but if you enjoy mulled wine or cider, gingerbread cookies, fruit cake, or anything cinnamon you better get you some.

Anchor Merry Christmas & Happy New Year Ale

This year marks the 40th (!!!) anniversary of Anchor’s Christmas Ale. If that’s not reason enough to give it a go this year, consider the following: Each year the recipe is a little different as is the iconic Christmas tree label. While James Stitt has been drawing the trees each year, this year’s version features a giant sequoia tree created to resemble what a giant tree planted 40 years ago would look like now. Also, it was chosen in conjunction with the 150th anniversary of the Yosemite Act. Pretty sweet right? On top of it all, the hops and malts used in the brew are top secret, so without trying this year’s (yet) it’s hard to even predict the flavor. Based on previous years, it’s usually a dark, rich, Christmas-y ale that will leaving you guessing on that one thing you’re tasting that you can’t quite place.

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Categories: Craft Beer, Holiday

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Weekend Roundup 12/11

by: Sara Bozich
December 11, 2014
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What a fun night last night! Our book club multi-tasked with a visit to Carmina Cristina’s Makeup Boutique in Camp Hill.

carmina cristina makeup

We brought wine and snacks, and Carmina led us through makeup tips for each of our concerns (a lot of us wanted to learn how to do a bold lip). We had such a good time.

By the way, anyone can do this — these mini get-togethers are free, and the host gets a special gift with a party purchase of $250 or more. Carmina’s makeup is not only great quality, but it is surprisingly affordable. I’d add this to your Christmas wishlist or New Year’s resolution list.

carmina cristina makeup

Tonight, weather pending I guess, I have Happy Hour at Suba with one of my bests. It’s an early night before the weekend, which I’ll spend primarily at the mall slinging sauce for Torchbearer. You can find me at the Capital City Mall Friday night, Saturday afternoon and night and Sunday  night.

Of course, I’ll start Saturday on air with Bruce Bond — you can catch us LIVE each week from 9 a.m. to noon on WTPA 92.1.

Thankfully, the Steelers are on the damn TV on Sunday, so I can chill out before returning to the mall. Maybe I’ll even wrap some gifts.

Still shopping? Check out our Gift Guides here and on PennLive.

Need more inspiration? Tune in tomorrow morning during the 7  o’clock hour to Glenn & Bob on The River 97.3 for “Sara’s Weekend Picks.”

What are you doing this weekend? 

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It’s Not Too Early to Plan Your Spring Race

by: Kelly Leighton
December 10, 2014
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‘Tis the season for hot chocolate, Christmas carols and … picking your spring race!

I know, it seems hard to believe that it’s that time already, but if you’re planning to have a goal race this spring, now is the time to start looking at the calendars, examining races and determining what race will be on your schedule.

By utilizing a combination of active.com, HARRC and Runner’s World websites, here’s how I usually pick my races:

Big vs. Small

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Do you prefer large, big races with thousands of runners? Or do you prefer smaller races with just a few hundred runners and less amenities? For me, I prefer smaller races. Bigger races with all the runners and all of the congestion gives me anxiety. There’s just too much going on, and I am already stressed out enough. I like smaller races where I can easily get to a bathroom, where I know I can see any friends along the course. Running all alone during a race really doesn’t bother me. But, obviously, there are millions of people who love the thrill of a large race, the excitement that runs among all the participants and the opportunity to run with so many other athletes.

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Categories: Running, Travel

2014 Holiday Party {RECAP}

by: Sara Bozich
December 9, 2014
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So this year I accidentally changed the party from a Friday to a Saturday — but by all accounts, I think this works better. We again returned to The Vineyard & Brewery at Hershey — this time at the barn (which didn’t even exist — along with the brewery — the first year!)

sbhh holiday 2014

It was year two for a rainy night, but who cares when you’re warm and toasty indoors.

Find more photos on Facebook — tag yourselves!

Winemaker Paul and Brewmaster Ryan both created some really cool, custom bevs for the evening.

Ryan took the Brewery at Hershey’s Naughty & Spiced winter warmer and aged it on bourbon-soaked chestnuts. He dubbed it the “Naughty Sara Boozich.” It was delicious.

sbhh holiday 14

Paul took a batch of fresh-pressed Weiser Orchard cider and fermented it on blueberries and Grand Marnier for an incredible, smooth, super-drinkable “Saranade Cider.”

"Saranade Cider"

“Saranade Cider”

There’s a small chance there is a bit leftover, so hurry out this week to try these one-time-only craft beverages.

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