At this point in your adult life you should well be over resolutions. They serve no purpose other than to induce feelings of guilt through the first, coldest, and darkest month of the year. Feelings that are not needed and only compound what the sensation of overwhelming dread many of us sun deprived individuals feel through the winter. And really, if you have something that needs resolved during the year, why are you waiting until the New Year to lie to yourself and say “This year will be different”. We all know if there is a problem or you want to improve your life in some way, waiting until the New Year to make some grand gesture is not the way to go; this isn’t the sitcom “How I Met Your Mother” and life has no blue French horn.
Now that we got that out of the way, and you’ve made the sane choice of foregoing pointless dietary restrictions for the first 30 days of the New Year, let’s explore some beers that push the caloric limit. Beers full of flavor, chewy, delicious, and more filling than take-out Chinese. These beers are best enjoyed on cold January nights and given the usual high alcohol content that comes with them, also best enjoyed in moderation (something that should be practiced all year!).
Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Barley Wine. A winter classic that has been around for decades. Bitter, malty, and worthy of being cellared for up to 5 years (or more!). This beer packs a whopping 330 calories per 12 fluid ounces and an impressive 9.6% abv. Pairs great with some bread pudding.
Dogfish Head 120 Minute IPA. Not so much an IPA, as it is a test of extreme hoppiness. With the recent lift on the Ohio alcohol limit you are now able to find this beer at the best beer retailers in the city. This monster clocks in at roughly 18% alcohol and more akin to a bitter whiskey than it is a beer. It packs a flavor punch and comes in at 450 calories per 12 fluid ounces.
Scottish brewer BrewDog is coming to Columbus in 2017, opening their first brewery in America. This brewery produces some insanely high alcohol beers, and what comes with that is ludicrously high calorie counts. First up is their stout, “Tokyo”, oak aged with jasmine and cranberries this beer packs a full 25% of your daily caloric value at 546 calories per 12oz. The next, and most dietary crushing of all is their “The End of History” a 55% (yes, 55%!) abv beer brewed for those that invest $20,000 or more into their new Columbus based brewery. A beer with this much alcohol clocks in at roughly 2,600 calories! Far more than is needed to get you through the day.
In short, if you’re looking for some calorie and diet busting beers this winter anything that is high in alcohol content generally is high in calories as well. Sweet, malty, and boozy. I can’t think of a better way to spend the cold dark days of winter.
This post was originally written by Bret Kollmann Baker for The Northsider in 2017.