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Saturday, January 28, 2023

Welcome home, Gators. How’s your champagne hangover treating you?  Mine might be gone by the time this prints, but I’m not counting on it.

2011: Just another year, or an opportunity to drink deep of new experiences? Undoubtedly, every day brings a chance to try a new drink, and the possibilities are overwhelming. Even  the most avid beer connoisseurs have room to expand their palette. Break out of the light beer rat race. Use alcohol as a means to live and experience, not a medication to help you forget.  Here are some tips to get you started on a year of drinking you’ll want to remember.

Try a New Scene, and a New Beer While You’re at It

Bored with the club scene?  Mix it up!  Gainesville now boasts three dedicated beer bars, all within walking distance of each other. 

If you can afford it, Stubbies Shirt Pub has the most beer in Gainesville, and with a constantly rotating stock, you’re always sure to find something new and incredible.  The Alcove is always stuffed to the rafters with beer nerds, drawn to a great selection of craft beer and friendly, knowledgeable bartenders.  Not a fan of the loud and the crowd?  Check out Midnight, with eight tap handles and a quieter, café-like atmosphere.

Drink Local

If you haven’t tried Gainesville’s first and only craft brewery, now is the perfect time.  It’s been more than a year since Swamp Head Brewery put out its first pint, and the uninitiated are all out of excuses.  Head over to Salty Dog on University Avenue, the first bar with all five Swamp Head standards on tap.  Warm yourself this winter with Midnight Oil, a coffee-infused oatmeal stout sure to keep you buzzing.

Watch the Show, Drink the Beer

This year on Sunday nights, Discovery will take you around the world in search of the greatest and strangest ingredients to make some of America’s most innovative beers.  Dogfish Head Brewery founder Sam Calagione sets out on an epic quest to recreate the ancient beers of the world. 

The best part?  Interactivity.  Head out to the store and buy the very brew you just saw broken down to the atomic level by one of the most respected names in craft brewing.

Get Talking

Alcohol is likely to be one of your largest investments in college, both in time and money.  Learn about it, and you’ll enjoy it a lot more.

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  Head to your local bottle shop and ask questions.  Talk to the people buying it next to you.  Invite five friends over and tell everybody to bring a six-pack of something new. 

Do what you have to do, and make your 2011 drinking experiences so fresh they’re unforgettable.

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