We already know that’s the case with beer writing. The week before Thanksgiving 1983, Michael Jackson loosed a long look at which beers paired well with which traditional parts of the feast for no less than The Washington Post. It was the first time such beer-food writing had appeared in a major American newspaper, and it proved immensely influential. A pale German beer with the turkey? Not Miller Lite? Get outta here!

As for pre-Thanksgiving wine writing that blazed new trails, let’s go back nearly 20 years. On Nov. 22, 1964, Robert Lawrence Balzer‘s first column appeared in The Los Angeles Times, then the nation’s largest daily newspaper by circulation. Balzer’s meandering run-through of wine lore and classification, coupled with prose that seems laughable in the post-Robert Parker era (“Fine wines, like beautiful women, invite comparison…”), represented the first major-length wine criticism in a big-time American newspaper since Prohibition; though he had been writing about wine for smaller publications since the late 1930s.

Why right before Thanksgiving? C’mon, what other American holiday is so much about food and drink?
· Thirty Years Ago, a Beer-Food First []