For the Panthers and Saints game two weeks ago, I chose Big Boss's Aces and Ates. In addition to being a good beer, I thought Riverboat RonTM might have been able to make something of the "dead man's hand." Unfortunately, a victory just wasn't in the cards. A fortnight has passed, however, and this team may finally be ready to take the division lead and clinch a spot in the playoffs.
Baltic Porter - The Duck-Rabbit Craft Brewery
Almost synonymous with their popular Milk Stout, The Duck-Rabbit Craft Brewery has been the "dark beer specialist" since 2004, when they opened their brewery in Farmville (yes, it's a real place outside of Facebook).
Duck-Rabbit's Baltic Porter just recently landed at most beer stores in the area. It is not only my favorite beer from Duck-Rabbit -- it might be one of my top five beers period. Baltic porters are stronger than the average robust or brown porter. Another distinction is that Baltic porters were often lagered: this means they used a lager yeast instead of an ale yeast and underwent a much longer fermentation period. Duck-Rabbit's Baltic Porter is indeed lagered, resulting in a smooth porter with notes of coffee, cocoa, Hershey's syrup and more of a dark fruit quality than you get in most porters (think figs, raisins, and even tart cherries).
How it relates to the game
It just takes time, both in lagers and life. The Panthers are better than the game two weeks ago would indicate, and I think this game in front of the home crowd will show that. Duck-Rabbit's Baltic Porter is a big and bold beer, yet the lagering period smooths it out and gives it a cleanness that most big porters lack. Likewise, the Panthers will need to be aggressive and yet restrained if they hope to win this game. They absolutely need to rush Brees when they can, but not if it means they're going to let him complete pass after pass as they did in the first meeting.
Price Point / Availability
You can find Duck-Rabbit's Baltic Porter in most stores for $10.99 a six-pack.
Looking to drink craft beer at the game? Here's a list of craft beers in Bank of America Stadium.