If you enjoy the mild spice of summertime Belgian ale, it's an easy seasonal transition to a fall pumpkin beer. Pumpkin beer was an American original, a colonial beverage invented out of necessity by beer-loving pilgrims, who had more access to Native American squash than English barley malt.
When cooked at a low heat, enzymes in the pumpkin flesh convert starch to sugar, which the yeast can later ferment into alcohol. Pumpkin beer recipes improved over the years and the rustic style remained popular from the 17th to the 19th century, when it was swept into the dustbin of beer history by malt-based beers produced by increasingly large industrial breweries.
Mimosas and Bloody Marys may dominate the brunch-beverage rankings, but MateVeza is aiming to change all that with their line of caffeinated brews, which derive their buzz from yerba mate. With a brew that packs both alcohol and caffeine, it's no wonder they're promoting the concept of "Beerunch," a magical time when drinkers can knock back a couple of brews without returning to bed by 2 pm.
Beerunch will be in full swing this Sunday, and the MateVeza folks have brought a lot of good friends along for the ride, with their rare brews in tow. The event boasts seven beers in total, each paired with a different brunch dish. San Diego-based Ballast Point's beloved Sculpin IPA, which is rarely found on draft in these parts, will be paired with huevos rancheros, while Sierra Nevada and Dogfish Head's second Life & Limb collaboration (also a draft rarity) will go head-to-head with Medjool dates wrapped in Niman Ranch bacon.