The holidays are always a magical time of year, and here in Indy that’s no exception. The onset of cold weather makes us think of Christmas cookies, mistletoe and crabapples. Well, Clay Robinson, owner and head brewmaster at Indy’s own Sun King Brewery, might be the only one who thinks of crabapples. In honor of Hoosier Holidays, the Visit Indy team recently sat down with Clay to discuss what else gets him in the holiday spirit. Here’s what he had to say:
Visit Indy: What beer will you be pairing with your own holiday dinner?
Clay: My favorite beer to pair with any dinner is Osirus Pale Ale. As a brewer, you get to have at least one quality, selfish endeavor… it’s the beer that if I had to choose a desert island beer, it would be on my island list. It’s something that I enjoy every day of my life. I think it goes great with EVERYTHING, but that’s just my personal preference because I love the beer.
Visit Indy: How do you incorporate Sun King into your everyday cooking?
Clay: For the wintertime, one of my favorite things to do is Crock-Pot cook. So cooking in a Crock-Pot and actually substituting in either a Sunlight or a Wee Mac in place of the chicken stock or water. It adds a really nice, rich flavor. Over at the City Market, there’s a place called U-Relish. U-Relish specializes in these packaged Crock-Pot meals. Well, I was over there talking to them recently, and they said, “you have got to try these black-eyed peas. Instead of using water, cook them in Sun Light Cream Ale. They are going to be amazing.” So I made a jambalaya and black-eyed peas and it was absolutely amazing.
What is Sun King doing for the holidays?
Clay: We break out different beers that we have. We keep private brewers stash of some of our favorite beers. We have some bourbon barrel aging beers that haven’t even been released to the public yet. And we all just get together – eat, drink and be merry. My mom runs a holiday raffle every year and does a drawing for fun swag.
Visit Indy: What is the inspiration behind the ingredients in your Malus Pi Seasonal Brew?
Clay: Crabapples. The Natural Born Juicers juice them for us, Fruit Loop Acres grows them, and then we take them and turn them into this delicious holiday treat using flaked oats and cinnamon, along with the crabapples, and we make this homage to a tart apple pie that comes out in a glass.
Want to try to a pint of Malus Pi in person? Here’s your chance! Now through January 6, Hoosier residents can stay at 20 of our top hotels at rates up to 50 percent. Take a tour of Sun King, while you score a great deal on an Indy hotel – sounds pretty good, right? Just make sure to book your room 72 hours in advance of the date of stay and have an Indiana ID handy at check-in. This Hoosier Holidays offer is good for anyone who calls Indiana home.