Yes it is that time again. Our list of Ten Beers You Must Drink This Summer. There are some basic guidelines that we follow for this list. Some of the beers will be seasonal releases, while others may be year round sessions beers. Some of the beers made the list for their rarity , some for their nostalgia. All of these beer made the list because they taste so damn good.
For the first time we are going to include a “malt beverage” on our list. This addition officially make the 2011 list 10.5 Beers You Must Drink This Summer.
1.) St. Arnold Fancy Lawnmower: This would not be our summer drinking list if it didn’t have a true German-style Kölsch. This is the session beer of all session beers. Fancy Lawnmower is clean and crisp with a great fruit flavors and citrus aroma. Fancy Lawnmower is light enough to be enjoyed with summer melons and fruits, this beer is also perfect for washing down burgers and dogs.
2.) Bell’s Oberon Ale: This golden wheat beer has a very delicate palate and nose. It pour a hazy deep golden color with a fluffy white head. The aroma is of orange and lemon zest with touches of malt. The flavor is light with noticeable carbonation, a refreshing crowd pleaser. This is an awesome beer to pick up if you have a mixed crowd of beer snobs and mass produced lager drinkers.
3.) North Coast Brewing Company Red Seal Ale: Is you kick up your summer grill with a bit of hots and spices this is your beer. This American Pale Ale is a nicely hopped pale ale with a nice malt backbone. The sweetness and bitterness are perfectly balanced making this an awesome summer sipper. Red Seal Ale is typically priced nice making this a great daily drinker. That is if you drink every day in the summer.
4.) Dogfish Head 120 Minute IPA: Every time we do this list Dogfish Head 60 Minute IPA enters the conversation. Then someone within minutes will mention the Dogfish Head 90 Minute IPA. Before long the list turns into 10 Dogfish Head beers you must drink this summer. This summer we are going to suggest you drink the holy grail of IPAs, Dogfish Head 120 Minute IPA. Dogfish Head 120 Minute IPA is an 18% abv and a whopping120 ibus adventure in hops. This is a perfect sipper for those chilly nights around the fire pit.
5.) Chimay Tripel (White): This is a big beer for a summer beer list. But this beer always makes it into my summer drinking rotaqtion. Chimay Tripel has a bitter, crisp flavor that I jones for in the summer. This trappist triple has wonderful fruit tones awesome sweet fruit aromas. I would suggest pairing for this magnum opus but I suggest you simply pour it in a snifter and enjoy it on a breezy summer day.
6.) Pabst Blue Ribbon: Yes we are putting PBR on the list yet again this year. You know why? We have been drinking PBR since we started drinking beer. If you stop buy the house of any TMRZoo staffer you are sure to find ice cold PBR in the fridge. This American Adjunct Lager tastes great and comes at a perfect price point. Our Sports and Culture Writer – Cletus P. Stillwater Jr. calls Pabst Blue Ribbon “Heaven wrapped in aluminum” probably because we pay Cletus in beer.
7.) Sam Adams Cherry Wheat: This American ale brewed with cherries and a touch of honey has become a family favorite in my house (yes my kids are of legal drinking age). The summer beer fridge is always stocked on the heavy side with this light summer session beer. The cherries add a subtle sweetness to this beer and are balanced perfectly with the hops giving you a perfect session beer. Try mixing a bit of Sam Adams Cherry Wheat with your favorite BBQ sauce and brushing it on some grilled center cut pork chops. Of course you should wash the pork chops down with more Cherry Wheat.
8.) New Belgium Ranger IPA: This hop bomb hits the scales at 70 IBUs. What I love about this beer is it doesn’t lose its character in its quest for hoppiness. New Belgium started with a beautiful malt backbone for this masterpiece of hops. This beer is hopped with a combination of Cascade, Chinook , and Simcoe hops giving Ranger a citus, floral and fruity esters. Ranger IPA is available in 12 oz cans making it the perfect golf course or beach companion.
9.) Blue Hills Brewing Anti-Matter Pale Ale: This is a great offering from a relatively new brewer located south of Boston. Everything these guys do seems to be right on mark. The Anti-Matter Pale Ale is an absolute homerun. The nose is flowery and grassy, it reminds me of the Blue Hills in the summertime. The mouthfeel has a light carbonation that has a huge wash of spicy hops across the tongue. It is a fun beer to drink, as you go back and forth between the sweetness in the aroma and the spiciness on the tongue.
10.) Harpoon Belgian Pale Ale: A relatively new ale in the Harpoon portfolio this ale is an awesome summer session beer. Like all of Harpoon’s portfolio of beers Harpoon Belgian Pale Ale is priced conservatively allowing you to pickup this nectar by the case as I do. The Belgian yeast gives the beer a cool spiciness that plays off the hops wonderfully. This ale is leaning more toward the American interpretation of the style so expect a hop blast with every sip.
10.5) Miller Genuine Draft 64 Lemonade: This is not a true “malt beverage” it is more of a shandy. A shandy is a English drink which is typically made by mixing a lighter beer and a lemonade 50/50. Typically shandys are considered a “woman’s drink” but even the roughest soccer hooligan will pound one down on a sweltering day. Miller Genuine Draft 64 Lemonade is definitely a thirst quencher and a low calorie option.
So that is it our 2011 list. Please keep in mind this is a list not a ranking of these great beers. Even if you have had some of these beers run out and try them again.