Coming from a very large, very dysfunctional family, requires a certain expertise in how not to have open warfare at the holiday table. Rather than consider what beer to serve, perhaps a better topic would be, should beer be served at all? Not that I am advocating abstinence (it would probably delay, if not prevent the fights, but half the clan wouldn’t bother to show either), rather, I’d like to take a look at the atmosphere one hopes to achieve at the prospective family gathering.
My long-suffering boyfriend often notes that different types of alcoholic beverages seem to him to produce different styles of inebriation. He notes that beer can produce a “mean drunk”, while wine seems to produce a more mellow mood. Given that he had tested this theory out on me and noted these facts to apply, I became in favor of extending this clinical trial to our next festive family meal.
Why should I serve beer if that will aggravate an already ornery crowd? Let’s give them wine instead! By all means make them mellow!
At our last Thanksgiving, I went all out and bought enough champagne to get them all corked. This was based on my gentleman friend’s observation that I was at my best when imbibing champagne. He presented for evidence a certain morning in “Nawlins” following an excellent champagne jazz breakfast at Cabby’s that included some public singing, dancing, and a long day of mellow, relaxed attitudes afterwards. ‘Nuff said! Champagne it was! Let the experiment begin!
In order to keep me financially solvent, we started with the good (expensive) stuff and as the general air of inebriated cheer escalated (and taste-buds dulled), we introduced gradually less expensive vintages until by the time the Turkey hit the boards they could have been swilling Kool Aid, so long as it was the right golden color and fizzed, they were one jovial band of drunks!
For the first time in recent history, we made it through to the pie course with no political fisticuffs, shouting matches, or comments about “divorced losers”. My least favorite brother actually even complimented my apple pie! There were no Republicans or Democrats, no married people versus unwed strumpets, just one big, happy, pickled family!
I hesitate to go so far as to state that I’ve found the cure for the common family war, but you better believe it will be champagne at our house for Thanksgiving from now on! Keep the beer for when we’re dining with friends!