Here Are the Only Beers You Should Be Drinking This Summer

Here Are the Only Beers You Should Be Drinking This Summer

1

Best Wheat Ale

Bell’s Oberon Ale

Bell's Oberon Ale

Hailing from Michigan, the seasonal Oberon Ale is synonymous with welcoming summer after a long, cold winter. The refreshing wheat ale is citrusy, with a hint of spice, and is often garnished with an orange slice.

It’s celebrated annually at the end of March on Oberon Day, the unofficial start of summer for Michiganders and beer lovers (me) across the country. Yes, in the Midwest, we skip right past spring.

2

Best Golden Ale

Kona Big Wave Golden Ale

Kona Big Wave Golden Ale

The Kona Big Wave Golden Ale is perfect for drinking on the beach. It’s brewed with Citra and Galaxy hops, giving it a fruity and juicy taste and aroma, while remaining light and easy to drink.

3

Bets Golden Ale Runner-Up

Montauk Summer Ale

Montauk Summer Ale

Montauk Summer Ale is a seasonal beer we wish were available year-round. It’s well-balanced with caramel malt and wheat, and has the flavor and body to stand on its own with a 5.6% ABV.

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From its birth in Mexico City in 1925 to its 1979 release in the U.S. to now, there might not be any other beer more internationally associated with warm weather, the beach, and a general good time. The Mexican lager is light and crisp, with notes of citrus and honey and can be found in 120 countries across the globe. Drink it with or without a lime—it’s pure summer.

5

Best Lager Runner-Up

Pacifico Clara

Pacifico Clara

This pilsner-style lager was created in 1900 by German brewers in Mazatlán, Mexico, on the Pacific coast. Then in the 1970s, it’s said that California surfers discovered the refreshing, crisp beer and brought it to the States.

It’s a well-rounded beer—not overly citrusy, and light yet flavorful. Whether you’re a surfer or not, this beer is a summer essential.

6

Best IPA

Founders All Day IPA

Founders All Day IPA

While lagers and pilsners are more associated with summer, IPAs can have a place at the picnic table too. Unlike many IPAs that have a rich taste and high ABV, Founders All Day IPA was designed to keep you going through your summer activities—just look at its name. It has a 4.7% ABV and maintains a clean finish that’s not overly hoppy.

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7

Best Lighter IPA

Bell’s Light Hearted Ale

Bell's Light Hearted Ale

Bell’s Two Hearted Ale is probably one of the best IPAs you can find nationally. Even IPA haters love it. But at 7%, it’s not exactly what you might be pounding under the sun (hats off to you, if you do). Enter: Light Hearted Ale, a session IPA that’s flavorful, easy, and only 3.7% ABV and 100 calories.

8

Best New England IPA

Old Nation M-43

Old Nation M-43

So hazy New England-Style IPAs aren’t exactly light, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be a summer beer. When the struggling Old Nation Brewing launched M-43 in 2017, it immediately took the business to new heights and created a craze surrounding the often sold-out beer.

Brewed with Calpso, Simcoe, Citra, and Amarillo hops and full of tropical flavors and aromas, it’s sunshine in a can.

9

Best Session Ale

Montauk Watermelon Session

Montauk Watermelon Session

Nothing says summer like juicy watermelon, so what better way to quench your thirst than with a watermelon beer? Many fruit-flavored beers are just too much—too sweet, too sticky—but the seasonal Montauk Watermelon Session Ale is the exact opposite. This 4.9% ABV beer has very subtle watermelon notes and will absolutely quench your thirst on a hot summer day by the pool.

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10

Best Sour

Dogfish Head SeaQuench Ale Session Sour Beer

Dogfish Head SeaQuench Ale Session Sour Beer

The Dogfish Head SeaQuench Ale is very refreshing. It’s a mix of Gose, Kölsch, and Berliner Weiss beers, with a touch of lime juice and sea salt, which makes for a crisp and tart libation. It has a similar flavor to a margarita, but not as sweet and without the tequila.

11

Best Pale Ale

Brooklyn Summer Ale

Brooklyn Summer Ale

This balanced American Pale Ale is a go-to for summer. It’s smooth with a touch of citrus and is perfect for quenching your thirst on a hot day.

12

Best Pilsner

Threes Brewing Vliet

Threes Brewing Vliet

The award-winning Vliet Pilsner is so crisp and smooth. It’s brewed with Saaz and Spalter Select hops and German Pilsner Malt, and is so complex in taste and body. It’s difficult to do a pilsner right, and Vliet gets it done.

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13

Best Kölsch

Alaskan Kölsch Ale

Alaskan Kölsch Ale

When you think summer, you might not think of Alaska, but you should definitely be thinking of a kölsch. A mix between an ale and lager, the German-style beer is crisp, smooth, and refreshing. It’s made with glacier-fed water from the Juneau Ice Field and a combination of hops and malts.

14

Best Radler

Samuel Adams Porch Rocker

Samuel Adams Porch Rocker

What could be more refreshing than lemonade and beer? German for “cyclist,” the radler, a mix of beer and lemon-flavored soda, is said to have originated in Germany as a drink for cyclists. The Samuel Adams Porch Rocker is a blend of Helles lager and lemons for a tangy, refreshing drink that’s low in ABV.

15

Best Shandy

Leinenkugel’s Summer Shandy

Leinenkugel's Summer Shandy

Shandy is another name for a radler, and Leinenkugel’s Summer Shandy has been a popular citrusy drink for years. It’s a weiss beer with natural lemon flavor that’s ideal for drinking by the lake (or anywhere).

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