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4 min read

A Guide to Game Day Food and Drink

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Touchdown-Worthy Tailgating Beer and Wine Tips 

Before the kickoff, you want to kick up the party with the right food and drink. To make the perfect pairings, you need to plan ahead. Anyone who’s attended a football game in Minnesota knows the struggle of tailgating in cold weather, so here are some of our best-kept tailgating secrets.

Tailgating With Wine

Drinking wine while tailgating can be tricky because you need to make sure you’re choosing wines that won’t fight with your food but will cut through the flavors. Great white wines for tailgating include Riesling, Pinot Grigio and Sparkling wine or Champagne. These wines pair well with a number of go-to pregame foods – especially chicken or shrimp.

If you’re tailgating with red wines, you’ll want to go with Zinfandel, Côtes du Rhône or Beaujolais. These red wines are great for game day because they are still good with a little chill to them.

Best Wine and Food Pairings for Tailgating

Don’t stress out on this. Wine pairs great with a lot of game-day foods. Both white and red wines go well with just about every tailgating recipe you might have on the menu. Here are some specifics that can guide you:

Hamburgers—Côtes du Rhône, Beaujolais, or Pinot Noir
Bratwurst—Cries for Riesling or a light Pinot Noir
Smoked Turkey—Riesling or Beaujolais
Ribs—Malbec (the perfect combination of sweet and spicy) or Zinfandel

Share Your Team Spirits

A nice drink can warm you up on a crisp fall day (or a snowy wintry one). Here are some of our favorite tailgating drinks:

  • Bloody Mary—The breakfast drink of champions. Make sure you have some of your favorite fixings to dress it up.
  • French 75—The perfect recipe for a tailgating drink.
  • Bull Shot—An acquired taste, but perfect for a cold winter day when served warm.
  • Margaritas—They’re not just for warm weather getaways. You can save yourself on bartending duties and opt for an easy, pre-made margarita too.

In fact, there are lots of good pre-made cocktails to check out.

Cheers to Beer

Of course, for many football fans, it’s hard to beat beer. Here’s a pro-tip, pack the beer cans first in your cooler because the bottom will stay the coldest the longest (this may not be as important if you’re going to a game in January).

Football is a truly American game, so going with domestic brews kind of makes sense. It’s nice to be able to offer your tailgating guests at least two choices of beer. Get a light one that’ll be popular with the not-to-picky crowd and then a darker or seasonal one (or two, or more) for people to try out. Minnesota is blessed to have lots of great breweries. Check out this guide of local breweries, distilleries, and wineries, so your tailgate can have a 100% Minnesota drink menu.

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Founded in 1934, Haskell’s has championed fine wines for over 80 years. With 13 wine stores in Minnesota, two delis and one restaurant. Haskell’s ships throughout the U.S. and delivers locally. As one of the top wine shops in North America, Haskell’s is known for legendary service and one of the finest collections of wine, beer and spirits. Led by Chairman and CEO Jack Farrell, and the Farrell family, Haskell’s continues to be at the forefront of the wine scene throughout the world.


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