Posts tagged ‘summer’

Anderson Valley Brewing Company: Summer Solstice

While on vacation to Washington, D.C. this past weekend, I got to try a few new beers (and brought even more home!) Expect lots of updates in the next couple of weeks!

Today’s selection is from the Anderson Valley Brewing Company in Boonville, CA. I tried their “Summer Solstice,” which as you might have guessed, is their summer seasonal. It’s a copper-colored cream ale and it was excellent.

As you can see, the beer is a clear copper color. Not your typical summer drink at first glance. But the taste is all summer. The aroma of the beer is mostly malt with a mild hops scent. It was very creamy and smooth with a clean finish. The taste is malty, mildly hoppy, with mild sweetness from the fruits and spices used in the brewing. It is meant to be served at 40-45 degrees, although it will taste great right out of the fridge too.

No suggestions for this one. I’ve had cream ales before but not one with as much fruit and spice flavor.

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Leinenkugel’s: Summer Shandy

I have been (not so) patiently waiting for this beer to hit shelves in New York since it last left shelves. Shandy season is my favorite time of year….and there’s good reason for it. I. Love. Summer Shandy. In fact, I love it so much that I am willing to pay the exorbitant six-pack prices here in New York. And…on to the review!

So…what is shandy? Shandy is the term for beer mixed with lemonade. If you took Leinie’s Honey Weiss and mixed it with lemonade, you’d get Summer Shandy. Leinie’s calls it “the perfect summer refresher” and I completely agree. After a hot day of laying on the beach or sitting out on the balcony reading, all I want is one of these.

Summer Shandy is light, crisp, and very citrusy. You can tell it’s brewed with lemonade just by smelling it. It has a lovely golden color and pours fairly clear with a decent head. I could drink this beer for days. Literally, ’cause it’s only 4.2% ABV. It is not bitter at all, so for those of you who don’t like the taste of hops, this is a good one for you.

I don’t have any “try this if you like these” suggestions because I’ve never had a shandy from any other brewery. If you know of one, I’d love to try it. (Side note: mixing Berry Weiss with lemonade makes it a hundred times better.)

Now, maybe this beer technically isn’t worth five stars, but this is MY blog and this is one of MY favorite beers, so take that, arbitrary rating system.

5 Stars

Heartland Brewery Part 1

While in NYC over the past two days I went to an awesome brewpub called Heartland Brewery. The worst part about this place is that you can only get its beer here. I had a 7-beer sampler, which offers their 6 regular brews plus one of their seasonals. Not bad for $15. I’ll review the seven beers over the next couple of posts, and we’ll start with a 2-for-1!

First up, Indian River Light.

This was an excellent summer beer, reminiscent of Blue Moon, but MUCH better. It’s also not cloudy like Blue Moon. The aroma is nearly all orange with hints of coriander. The taste is the same: LOTS of orange, bits of spice, and a clean, finish. This is a great summer beer–I could drink this for hours.

Try this if you like: Blue Moon

5 Stars

Next up, Cornhusker Lager. This was a very generic lager, made with corn hops like many of the American macrobrews. The website even claims that it’s similar to Bud. No wonder I didn’t like it.

There was really no aroma to speak of. On first taste I thought “yup, this is an American lager.” It was quite bubbly (a very tingly mouthfeel,) with a mild malty taste. This definitely had more taste than your typical Bud or Miller (a plus for it), but other than that it wasn’t anything special. I’m glad I only had to drink 5 ounces of it.

Try this if you like: Bud, Miller, Heineken, Amstel

Lost Coast Brewery: Great White

This Thursday night I went out to Syracuse’s great beer bar, J. Ryan’s. A couple reviews will come from this night, so here’s the first.

Great White, by the Lost Coast Brewery in Eureka, California, is a light, refreshing witbier. It was fairly typical in color, texture, and taste. Great White has strong hints of citrus and no real after taste. It’s highly carbonated and not very bitter. This is definitely a beer to have on a hot summer night–or a brisk spring evening. Either works!

Lost Coast Great WhiteUnfortunately the color doesn’t come out very well in the photo–that’s the problem with forgetting your camera and having to use your boyfriend’s Android phone camera. But, you can even SEE the carbonation in it.

Overall, this was a pretty decent Belgian witbier. Nothing too special, but tasty enough. I’d drink it again if given the chance.

Try this if you like: Blue Moon

3 stars

War Horse Brewing Company: Riesling Ale

This week Eric and I took a little trip down to Geneva, NY to go on some wine tastings and get away from work for a little while. We ended up discovering War Horse, this great little “soon-to-be-legendary” (as they call it) brewery on the shores of Seneca Lake. We tried 4 beers plus their old-fashioned root beer, which was AMAZING, by the way. Can’ t beat old fashioned root beer.

While the American Black Lager, Peace Bomber Ale, and India Pale Ale were certainly good, their Riesling Ale was the star of the show.

It’s a light wheat beer base with New York Riesling grape juice in it. The result is a little fruity, high on carbonation, not too hoppy, easy to drink, and TASTY. A perfect summer beer to match the…um…snow outside. (Well, it WAS sunny, I suppose.) I could drink this beer for hours on end. Unfortunately we only brought home one bottle.

Riesling Ale is a beer for anyone. It has a clean finish (no weird aftertaste), and is a unique taste you’re not going to get from your average summer ale.

Try this if you like: Bell’s Sparkling Ale

4 stars