Derek Warren


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Beer: The Fear

Brewer: Flying Dog Brewery

Style: Imperial Pumpkin Ale

ABV: 9.00%

Description: The Fear pours a dark rich mahogany color with amber blood-like edges with a frothy off-white head that does not linger too long. The aroma smells of toasted pumpkin bread with notes of ginger, molasses, allspice, and nutmeg being the most dominant up front, followed by rich, chewy malts. The taste follows the nose, and upon the first sips, it tastes as if you bit into freshly baked and chewy pumpkin bread.

The spice notes hit the palate up front, followed by the rich malts bringing hints of caramel and a hop bite quickly passing over before a semi-dry finish takes over. The full body and medium carbonation give the beer a smooth feeling across the palate. The alcohol is somewhat apparent but does not detract from the beer and instead aids in making this the perfect fall beer to warm up with on a cool fall night!

Ideal setting: While the argument can be made that any beer is great to enjoy while out with friends, The Fear is a beer that makes a case for an evening together with friends at home or huddled around a campfire. The 9 percent ABV will certainly keep you warm on a chilly fall evening, and the strong notes of pumpkin spice will put you in the mood to watch your favorite horror film. The Fear is a great beer to buy a few six-packs of and invite over friends for a fantastic fall evening!

Ideal music: The label and the beer for The Fear are strong, in your face, and mildly aggressive. This combination calls for music that has that same spirit and attitude and maybe just a light tinge of darkness – it is the Halloween season, after all.

Some great albums to enjoy with this beer are:

Ideal movie: This is a beer that leaves no doubt of the ideal pairing for films – horror movies! While some classic horror films make for a good pairing, so do a great deal of newer ones. Some great horror films to enjoy with this beer are “Dawn of the Dead“, “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre,” “Halloween,” “Dead Alive,” “Rec” and “Rec 2“, “The Beyond,” and “28 Days Later.”

Ideal book: Again, horror is the genre that best makes for an ideal book to enjoy with this beer. The 9 percent ABV will sneak up on you, so if you decide to read a book with this beer, make sure you take your time and sip! Some great books that pair with The Fear are “The Rising,” “World War Z,” “Pet Cemetery,” “I Am Legend,” “Something Wicked This Way Comes,” and “The Haunting of Hill House.”

The perfect experience: The Fear is a beer that should be enjoyed with friends at home watching horror films together. The high ABV makes a strong case for a night in, but with the fall season in full swing, this is the time of year to imbibe some wonderful pumpkin beers and truly savor the season with some classic horror films!

How to Pair Beer with Everything is a weekly column about stimulating all of the senses through beer. Look for it every Thursday on NEPA Scene.