I like beer. It’s a very refreshing drink on a warm summer day, or a great way to wind down from a long week at work. Over the past 5 years, my taste in beer has changed. Luckily for me, most places that I attend on a regular basis, have embraced the craft beer movement. U.S. Cellular field is no different.
For 7 years I lived in Huntington Beach, CA. California has become a beacon for the craft beer industry, but sadly I stuck to my watered down American domestics during my time out there. It makes me sick now, but that is just the way it was. It took years for me to understand that since I liked Guinness, I would more than likely enjoy other stouts. In 2010, along with my brother-in-law, I traveled to Minneapolis, MN for Soundset. We meet up with a high school friend at Brit’s Pub, which is a lovely place to grab a drink. While we we sitting at the bar, one beer seemed to sell more than all the others. While drinking my Guinness, I remarked to my brother-in-law, that we had to try this beer since everyone was drinking it. Without missing a beat, the bartender threw me a taster of this mystery beer. I took a drink and it tasted like a beer infused grapefruit. I loved it. That beer, it turns out was Surly’s Furious. Great beer, I was hooked.
Later that year, I was in Rock Island, IL at RIBCO watching the Smoking Popes. I had been drinking a bunch of local stouts and trying whatever I could. While there I asked for a coffee stout and the bartender threw me a taster of Founders Breakfast Stout. Delish. I had two before I noticed my ears getting hot and feeling the booze just a little. Later that month, I bought a case of Breakfast Stout. I love that beer. That began my love affair with craft beer which continues to this day. Always try something new, always try the local fare.
U.S. Cellular Field has a pretty good array of craft beer that will keep most beer lovers happy. They have their “Beer’s Of The Midwest” stands (Sections 108, 124, 142, 155 & 531) that have a great selection of craft and domestic offerings including: Revolution Anti-Hero IPA, Lagunitas IPA, Lagunitas Day Time Pale Ale, MillerCoors Smith and Forge Hard Cider, Miller Fortune, Veteran Beer Company Blonde Bomber Ale and Bell’s Two Hearted Ale. Behind section 113 (and 513) is the secret gem though. If the game is poorly attended, these stands might not be open, which is always a damn shame. At these stands they pour 24oz drafts of both Revolution’s Anti-Hero and Lagunitas IPA. Last year they were $9.75 a draft which is 40¢ an oz. For comparison, the 16oz Lite’s that they sell for $8 are 50¢ an oz. But this year, the Sox have increased the price of these drafts to $10.75 which is still a pretty decent deal at 45¢ an oz. Also consider that the ABV of Anti-Hero is 6.5%, Lagunitas IPA 6.2% and Lite is 4.17%. So not only do you get a great tasting beer, you also get drunker if you are into that sort of thing.
I go to games with a group of guys that are big beer drinkers, well, big drinkers in general. Most nights or days start on a porch by the field, drinking some beers. Most nights end at that same porch or at ChiSox Bar and Grill (maple wings / half price). I would say that most of us appreciate a fine malted beverage, but when mass consuming them (like we do most of the time) we stick with the domestic stuff. I’ll drink a Lite with the best of them, I think every Beer Snob needs to have that domestic fall back. I was a huge Bud Light fan back in the day, but they don’t serve that at the Cell. I also have been known to drink a TON of Busch Light, but that isn’t available either. This year they offer MGD, Lite and Coors Light in the seats for $8. Pretty decent selection that I am sure encompasses about 90% of beer drinkers. You also can get a Summer Shandy in the seats, but that is $9.25, and Summer Shandy isn’t worth a $1.25 more. Guys I roll with like Miller High Life, which is pretty damn hipster. I like it also, but after a few good beers it is pretty darn hard to choke down. Lite seems to go down pretty easy regardless. So Lite is my fall back, which is crazy to me, since that is a beer I have talked so much shit about. Welcome to Chicago I guess.
So for 2015, I have decided to bring back my blog, but only to talk about the game experience and anything else that I might wanna bitch about in general. There are plenty of baseball blogs that do a baseball analysis much better than I ever could. So if you are looking for that, seek them out. I had some loyal followers back in 2012, hope some of you give me a chance again this season. I can’t say how many blogs I will do this year, but I have started and have a few ideas already cooking. If you want, follow me on Twitter or Facebook. MySoxSummer is at both places. I don’t do either that regularly, but I try to at least check in for the games. If you need to contact me, send me an email at email@example.com. Thanks for reading and looking forward to seeing you all at a game this season!