Mission 1: Beer 22 - Celebration Ale


Celebration Ale is the best beer ever made. Period. End of story. I have been waiting for this beer all month! Cele (pronounced Sell-y around here) is a seasonal brew from Sierra Nevada. It typically comes out around my birthday, Halloween. It's like Sierra Nevada is giving me a gift every year. My friends know to bring a box with them to my house when we are having a gathering. It is pretty much all I drink from October to January, longer if I can stock pile. A few years back, for my birthday, everyone who brought beer brought me a box of Celebration, I have never loved my friends more.

I think everyone has that beer, or drink, that just goes right to their happy place. Whether it's the taste of the beer itself or the memories made while drinking with friends, everyone has that one special beer. Celebration is mine. The Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas gambit is my favorite time of year. I wear jeans and sweatshirts, hang out with my huge family and drink Celebration. We take it by the case to our family gatherings.

So now that you understand how much I LOVE this beer we can move on to the taste. Celebration is a seasonal brew and as such is subject to change from year to year. The flavor is just a little different every year. I am a hop head, I love a bitter, fresh, hoppy beer. Celebration is what really started me off on that path. When I first tried it, back in 2001 or 2002, it was the most powerful beer I had ever had. The piney, hop flavor punched you right in the mouth. That punch stays until the end. Just a hint of malt smoothness comes through at the end to soften the blow.

That is how it used to be anyway. The last three or four years I have noticed a more balanced flavor to the Celebration. The power punch of hops has receded from an Ali or Lennox level knock out to perhaps a Chris Brown level. I am all for balance in my life, but leave it out of my Celebration! I still love this beer, it is still the best.

I wouldn't recommend that all you habitual Coors, MGD, or Corona drinkers take on a Celebration. It's too big for you, maybe when you're older and can drink big kid beer you should give it a try. I was so happy to have this beer in April, but I was so sad to drink my last one, knowing I have to wait until October to have another!

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