[OSBURN ON TAP] Brewed for the Big Game

One of my favorite non “holiday” days of the year is Super Bowl Sunday. It really doesn’t matter if you like either of the teams. All that matters is that it’s party time.  Most people throw a party or better yet, attend some else’s (no post game clean up). Everyone I know, regardless of their sports fandom, celebrates the big game in some fashion. The food, the friends and the frothy brews are reason enough to have a party. Some of us still care about the game though, too.

As you may or may not know, I am more than just the beer columnist at The Father Life. I am also the sports editor, so Sunday February 7th is an important day for me as both beer columnist and sports writer. The Super Bowl is a great day to spend with friends and family. We celebrate not only the good times with good people, but the exciting play on the field (the commercials) as well as great food and drink. Specifically beer (for the adults) and treats more on par with pub appetizers than thanksgiving dinner.

This year’s game pits the Indianapolis Colts against the New Orleans Saints. Personally, I’ll be rooting for the Saints. Mostly because I actually like them and they’ve never been to the Super Bowl before, but also because the Colts just recently won (I love to see a new champion).

My friend Pete is a die-hard Saints fan and I’ve seen the years upon years of non-playoff football he’s persevered through to get to this day. He and the people of New Orleans deserve this. I feel his pain since I’m a Bills fan and they lost four straight Super Bowls in the early nineties. Also, they haven’t even made the post season since the “Music City Miracle” wildcard loss on January 8th, 2000. A date that should live in infamy with any Buffalo sports fan.

The game will be played in more or less the middle of winter, so, come game time, I suggest you give a nice winter beer a try. I know Bud Light will have about a dozen or so commercials during the game, but don’t give into the hype. Mix in some of these delicious wintry brews with the yellow, fizzy beer in your party cooler and hear the crowd roar with excitement:

Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale: American IPA, 6.8% ABV.

Samuel Adams Winter Lager: Bock, 5.8% ABV.

Southern Tier Old Man Winter: Old Ale, 7.2% ABV.

Brooklyn Winter Ale: Scottish Ale, 6% ABV

Or try a nice hoppy brew like Rogue Brewery’s Dead Guy, Stone Brewing Company’s Arrogant Bastard Ale, Ithaca Beer Company’s Cascazilla or Victory Brewing Company’s Hop Devil All of these would pair well with spicier Super Sunday fare.

Now for the meat of the article (pun intended): the food. My mom has made an amazing pizza dip for special occasions for as long as I can remember. It’s cheesy, full of chunks of pepperoni and delicious. Here’s the recipe if you want to be like Reggie Bush and be the show stopper of your party:

Momma Osburn’s Pizza Dip


3/4 cup mayonnaise

12 ounces pepperoni, chopped (can use turkey pepperoni)
1 pound Mozzarella cheese, shredded
1 tomato, diced
1/4  tsp Italian seasoning

1 loaf Italian bread, cubed

Mix together all ingredients except bread.

• Pour into ovenproof dish; bake 30 minutes.

• Use bread cubes as dippers.

Temperature: 350° Time: 30 minutes 4 to 5 cups

No food screams football more than chicken wings, but who wants to go through the hassle of using two hundred wet naps to clean up the mess? My Brother Matt (the chef) has been making a delicious variation of the famous bar food. His chicken wing dip, much like the pizza dip, will surely make you the most popular person at the party. Take a look at the recipe below.

Chef Matt’s Buffalo Wing Dip:


4 chicken breasts

1 package cream cheese

1 pound shredded cheddar

Red Hot sauce to taste

½ pound crumbled blue cheese (depending on desired heat)

2 tbsp mayonnaise

salt and pepper to taste

Boil chicken until cooked, let cool and shred with fork. Mix all ingredients, saving some cheddar for the top. Place in baking dish, cover and bake in oven.

• Use tortilla chips, celery sticks or bread cubes as dippers.

Temperature: 350° Time: 20 minutes

Humus is also a delicious and healthier option. You can make your own or buy it pre made. Use pita bread or vegetables as dippers. But, whatever you choose to have at your party, make sure you share. Also, have a safe and happy Super Bowl experience.

*What are you planning to eat and drink at your party? Throw me an email cosburn@thefatherlife.com or leave a comment below.

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