A summer release I’m just getting around to reviewing is Triple C Brewing’s Golden Girl Blonde Ale, brewed with a local roaster’s coffee blend and tart cherries. The result is light, refreshing, and utterly delicious. The nose is light and malty, and has an unexpected hint of sour yeast and a bit of cherry. The middle is malty blonde ale base with strong but not overpowering tart cherries, and just a hint of coffee for balance that builds just a bit in the finish. Ultimately this is a cherry blonde ale, but the coffee is wonderful addition that gives it extra complexity in the finish, but not enough to give it any bitterness. I honestly didn’t know what to expect with this beer, but even had I had high expectations, this might have exceeded them. A wonderful new brew that’ll I’ll definitely be looking for again next summer. The body is medium to heavy, and the alcohol is a light, summery 4.5% ABV.
I give it a 4.7 out of 5.
So it’s November, and Bière de Provence is a summer saison. Sue me. I try every Dogfish Head beer I can find, and this is when I happened to find this one, and I won’t pass up the opportunity to try it, whatever the season. This is a Belgian Saison, and the tagline is that it is brewed with lavender, marjoram, and bay leaves. The lavender is immediately apparent in the nose, which is predominately floral with a bit of fruity Belgian yeast adding some banana esters. The middle explodes with pepper, herbal notes and sweet malty undertones. The finish is yeasty, fruity and mellow. The body is medium and the for a summer saison the alcohol is a beastly 8.3% ABV, A delicious beer and a fine saison that I wish I’d discovered earlier.
I give it a 4.4 out of 5.
Now that summer is upon us, I thought that it might be time to offer up some choices for a nice refreshing craft beverage. They’re slanted towards my tastes, obviously, but I hope you’ll find something here that you can enjoy and will keep you cool in the heat.
In no particular order:
- Sierra Nevada Pale Ale – Light, refreshing, slightly hoppy, and available virtually everywhere, this is a classic that comes into its own in the summertime. Available in both bottles and cans, this is a go-to beer for any summer occasion.
- New Belgium Shift Pale Lager – For those who don’t enjoy the hoppier side of beer, and want something less bitter, Shift Pale Lager is an excellent option. Light, malty, and available in 16-ounce cans, it can quench the mightiest thirst.
- Shiner Ruby Redbird – A grapefruit twist on a shandie, Ruby Redbird is a beer that gets not so great reviews, but demonstrates that there’s no accounting for taste, because I happen to love it. It’s easy-drinking, highly carbonated and refreshing, and I look for it every time I’m in Texas in the summer.
- Victory Summer Love – The hoppiest beer on the list, Summer Love is an option for those days when you need something that’s still nice and light but that has a little more bite.
- Bell’s Oberon Ale – Oberon Ale is a wheat beer and the mildest on the list for those who are most averse to bitterness, or who don’t traditionally drink beer, perhaps. It’s smooth and subtle and another fantastic option.
These are some of my favorite summer treats, and they’re certainly one reason to look forward to the months of heat and sun ahead.