By Max Tabachnick

Beer bottles

Your turn to supply the suds? Bringing beer for your team is a simple task that is often overcomplicated. Here are some tips on how to do it right.

  1. Do: Bring enough. You’ll more than likely have this task only once a season, so make sure you bring a sufficient amount. If you need help, follow this simple formula: Multiply your expected roster by three and bring at least that amount.
  1. Don’t: Bring cans smaller than 12 ounces. We’re sure there’s a place where a half-can is acceptable, but that place is not the hockey locker room.
  1. Do: Keep the beer cold. The beer guy may as well be called the Beer and Ice Guy, so plan on shelling out a couple of extra of bucks for a bag. The task can get a bit trickier if you’re coming straight from work but is still entirely manageable: one of our guys showed up last week with a plastic trash bag full of cans on ice. And if you are in a position to travel to games with a cooler there’s no excuse not to. Look into picking up a couple of large insulated bags. They’re relatively inexpensive and lend themselves better to most cars than larger, bulkier coolers. Though keeping the beer ice cold may require some improvisation, it’s an absolute must.
    1. Don’t: Bring dark or heavy brews. If you’re craving nutty brown ale after stepping off the ice, chances are you’re in the minority. Pick a beer that’s crisp and refreshing over something heavy, malty, or excessively hoppy.

  1. Do: Bring cans over bottles. Cans fit better in coolers and are easier to toss across a locker room. And you won’t need to worry about broken glass, especially in a car full of empty bottles. Need further convincing? Just ask the rink employee cleaning up your locker room for his take on the matter.
  1. Don’t: Show up with bottles that require an opener unless you’ve got one. Duh.
  1. Do: Be deliberate in your beer selection. Whether you show up with your old college standby, the beer your dad drank when you were a kid, or something you just had and want the team to try, give some thought to what you bring. Keep in mind that the task of providing beer for your team is a subtle reflection on you; try not to blow it.

Editor’s note: Please respect local laws concerning the consumption of alcoholic beverages. Drink responsibly.

Max Tabachnick played varsity hockey in high school and now plays defense for his rec league team.

How do you handle beer duty for your hockey team? Share your comments and let us know!