Summer is days away, and BBQ season was here weeks ago. You want a beer that’s refreshing in the hot, humid dog days of Summer. But is that really all you look for? Is a Blue Moon good enough for you? Of course not. I still want a beer I can taste, that has some complexity, and most importantly for this site, one that pairs well with smoky meat and barbeque sauce. Here are three of my favorite beers to drink while I act like a man and cook animal meat over a fire.
1. Anderson Valley Summer Solstice:
“Summer” is in the title… must be an unfiltered wheat ale like everything else, right? Ugh. Pass the orange slice, right rube? Hell no. This is something different. AVBC’s Summer Solstice is actually a rich, copper colored cream ale that is malty, a little sweet, with an smooth mouth feel. This is a malt forward beer with a hit of caramel and sweet molasses that pairs perfectly with any grilled meat. The 5.0% ABV won’t overpower you. This isn’t a beach beer or a beer you drink at the peak of the July heat. But this is the perfect beer to drink at 6 p.m. on a Summer night as you finish putting the sauce on the ribs you just bbq’d!
2. Bell’s Oberon Ale
If I’m going to drink a wheat ale, this is the my #1 go-to. Bell’s is one of my favorite breweries, and you can find this in pretty wide distribution, both on tap in your favorite bar, and at the super market. 5.8% ABV of refreshing goodness. This beer is tart and spicy for a wheat ale, and if you put fruit in it, you’re crazy.
3. Port City Optimal Wit
My favorite new brewery, from Alexandria, Virginia. I generally stick to their pale ale and excellent porter, but their Optimal Wit is worth a try this Summer. Refreshing and citrusy, with a hint of orange, coriander, and banana, with a hint of spice on the finish, this is a beer you can drink all day long. Your girl will like this beer too, if that matters at all. It doesn’t.