There’s no getting around it, when you’re talking tailgating, the consumption of beverages is at least as important as the ingestion of solid foods. Okay, if we’re being honest, it’s probably the main reason football fans lower their tailgates and put up the tents. The food just helps you to get sober enough to recognize which teams have the ball during the game.
The fact that the beer sold inside the stadium is probably going for 7 or 8 bucks a pop is enough of a reason to bring your own pre-game beverages. Plus, when you bring your own, you can be more creative with what you pour.
Considering that many tailgates commence in the early to mid-morning hours (depending on kickoff time), beer isn’t necessarily the libation of choice at 8:45 a.m. A nice Bloody Mary, Mimosa, or Screwdriver might be just the ticket.
As a public service, we now present our starting lineup of recommended cocktails and mocktails for Tailgating 2008.
Pineapple Greyhound This classic cocktail pairs vodka and grapefruit juice. We’ve added a unique twist by stirring in fresh pineapple juice for an eye-opening effect. Perfect for those early kickoffs.
Sangria A Spanish classic. We like the combination of brandy, red wine and fresh fruit juice to help kick-start any morning event.
Spicy Bloody Mary The smoothness of vodka pairs well with the bite of tomato juice and spicy horseradish. The Bloody Mary has become an almost indispensable brunch (and tailgate)companion.
Golden Peach Margaritas For the early arrivers, combine frozen peach slices, fresh lime and a splash of tequila in a blender. Give it a whirl and serve in your favorite team cups.
Mulled Cranberry Cider for a Crowd For those particularly chilly game days, nothing’s more warming than a big simmering pot of spiced cider. You can serve this two ways, with or without the rum. Either way, give this a full 30 minutes to steep so the flavor has plenty of time to infuse.
Mimosa Don’t think a little bubbly is too fancy to consume on parking lot asphalt. Bring along plastic champagne flutes to serve this brilliant brunch beverage. It is a time for celebrating, after all.