First of all, whatever one you celebrate, have a healthy and happy holiday!

I do fervently hope that this time of year finds you celebrating a favorite holiday rather than enduring the rituals that, at the darkest time of the year, essentially acknowledge our mortality.

You can bet that the ancients sensed that essential to human nature is the sharing of experience in rituals… the shared round of beers… meals at table… the shared knowledge that only veterans, parents and grandparents have… and the shared secrets that have become basic beer brewing techniques.

I can only hope that a meal shared at table is part of your seasonal celebration. The sharing of food and drink seems to be essential to all of the religious rituals so to be properly socially and secularly celebratory I share with you…

Here in Brooklyn USA the annual Christmas feast, featuring a standing rib roast, roasted Brussels sprouts, bourbon yams, sautéed harcourt verte, a four cheese plate after the main course, and the traditional Buche Noel. Yes, beer will be the table beverage… big bottle beers.

For the last twenty years it has been my responsibility and pleasure to prepare this annual feast for a minimum of five people and a maximum of eleven. Don’t give me too much credit. Cooking for twenty five is just as easy as cooking for two, in fact, almost easier.

What’s not so easy is the choice of beverage. Yes I know we are all fans of fermented malt beverage but there are times when our friends and fermentation, the vintners, are welcome at the table. For those of you who will enjoy the grapes this year I will toast your good health.

Here in Brooklyn USA I’m going to take advantage of a number of good breweries who have sent me samples of their most powerful beers over the last year. In a future post I shall give them proper thanks and photographic acknowledgment. I also intend to post a series of text and photos of the preparation and enjoyment of the great feast. Believe it or not, I shall keep copious notes. Wish me luck!

And that is what is being anticipated this year here in Brooklyn USA. How many people will I be cooking for this year? Five hearty eaters…

Let me once again extend my good wishes to you and yours for the holidays and into the next year.
If you would care to share with me, and the rest of the readers of this blog, a description of your culinary celebration I would be glad to cobble them together ( shoemaker that I am) and post the result early next year.