By Brandon Chaplin, Specialty Manager
With summer arriving and with it the wonderful warm weather, many of us will be spending time outdoors with friends and family or doing outdoor chores. These summertime activities can cause a serious thirst for a nice, crisp India Pale Ale (IPA), or delicious summer wheat ale. These beers are truly meant for when we shed the heavy layers of clothing and, along with them, the heavily spiced winter ales and stouts for more thirst-quenching, lighter offerings.
In late spring and early summer, be on the lookout for some really top-notch IPAs and summer ales. In early April, Shipyard Brewery will be releasing XXXX IPA (yes, this is really the name). This award-winning beer uses Cascade Hops and is copper in color. XXXX IPA has been described as having a citrus nose, the flavor of red grapefruit and a nice, clean hop finish. It pairs best with Cajun dishes and traditional barbecue, but is also perfect to enjoy by itself after a long day of yard work. For an even more intense IPA experience, try the new seasonal release from Oscar Blues Brewery: GUBNA. This Imperial IPA is 10 percent alcohol by volume and uses only Summit Hops in a post-formation dry hopping process to give its intense citrus flavor and an international bittering units rating of 100. Look for GUBNA in four-pack cans.
For those who are not huge IPA fans, there are many other fine choices for summertime beer refreshment. One of my favorites is Bell’s Brewery summer wheat, Oberon Ale. This wheat beer is available year round in six-pack bottles and embodies the taste and warmth of summer. With its clean finish and light body, complemented by a refreshing hint of orange, Oberon Ale truly is sunshine in a bottle.