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Courir de Mardi Gras beer 

Breweries throughout Louisiana honor the Carnival season with beers crafted specifically for Mardi Gras

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Bayou Teche's Courir de Mardi Gras is a biere de mars, which is a variety of the French farmhouse style of biere de garde. First brewed in 2012, its bottle and six-pack carton depict a rider on horseback wearing a traditional Cajun Mardi Gras costume. The beer has a toasty malt flavor boosted by a touch of refreshing wheat and subtly soft hop spiciness. It can be found along the Uptown parade route at Avenue Pub and Ole Saint, and at Lager's in Metairie.

Abita's Mardi Gras Bock is the brewery's homage to the traditional German maibocks of spring. At 6.5 percent alcohol by volume (ABV), the malty and full-bodied bock kicks off Abita's annual seasonal beer cycle. It can be found along the Uptown parade route at Samuel's Blind Pelican, The Irish House and Superior Seafood.

Gordon Biersch's Carnival Bock is another German-style beer, a helles bock, which is stronger (8.5 percent ABV) and more warming than the maibock style. Head brewer Tom Conklin says this is the annual recipe he brews for New Orleans. It's only available in-house at the Biersch brewpub in the CBD.

NOLA Brewing breaks all traditions with its hoppy red ale called Flambeau Red, named in honor of the traditional flambeaux torch bearers who escort some nighttime Carnival parades. First brewed in 2011, the beer can be found along the Uptown parade route at the Circle Bar and New Orleans Hamburger & Seafood Company, as well as on the Mid-City parade route at Theo's and Holy Ground.

These beers are found in many more places as well. — NORA McGUNNIGLE

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