Summer Beers 2017

As this is published, we, the British beer drinker will be in the midst of one of the best sunny summers of recent memory, and as such; will have mighty thirsts to quench. Looking through my Untappd check-ins and back to previous years I have put together my personal list of favourite summer beers. This list has been curated from my own drinking experiences over the last three or so years, and whilst my palette can certainly be observed to be different today, there are obvious trends that can be followed throughout. Taking in an overview of the beers, there are common styles that have proved to be stalwart summer go-to’s. Pales, Saisons, Fruit Beers, Goses & Lambics dominate my summer check-in activity, with many of the beers falling under multiples of the aforementioned style lines. Those listed as follows are quintessential summer beers, search them out and drink them down in the stifling heat – cheers!

PALES

THE BEST: MAGIC ROCK – HIGH WIRE – 5.5% West Coast Pale Ale

A stone cold classic from one of the fastest growing breweries in the UK. Dry with a consistently brilliant bitter hoppy bite, leading to a crisp, clean finish. ALWAYS have a can of this in the fridge.

THE REST: VERDANT – BLOOM 6.5% IPA

BUXTON – WYOMING SHEEP RANCH 9% DIPA

CHORLTON BREWING COMPANY – 5.7% HULL MELON INDIA PALE LAGER

YEASTIE BOYS – GUNNAMATTA – 6.5% IPA dry-leafed with earl grey tea

BEAVERTOWN – BLOODY ‘ELL – 7.2% IPA with blood orange juice & zest

FOURPURE BREWING CO – JUICEBOX CITRUS IPA – 5.9% orange zest IPA

SAISONS

THE BEST: TO Øl – ROSES ARE BRETT – 6% Red Saison brewed with raspberries

Fruity and spicy, this herbaceous farmhouse beer has been dosed with raspberries to enhance its’ already abundant refreshing qualities, pouring with an aesthetically pleasing deep red hue.

 

THE REST: PARTIZAN – BLACKCURRANT & JUNIPER SAISON 4.7%

FRUIT BEERS

THE BEST: MIKKELLER -SPONTANTRIPLEBLUEBERRY – 10% lambic with 1500 gram blueberries per 1 litre

You read that right, 1500 grams of blueberries per 1 litre. This beer is the fruitiest fruit beer you will ever have. The tart, vinous complexity and deep viscosity allows this beer to be drunk like a full-bodied wine. You won’t believe you are drinking beer. Simply stunning.

SpontanTriple.jpg

THE REST: BUXTON/OMNIPOLLO – LEMON MERINGUE PIE – 6% Lemon Fruit Beer

DUGGES/STILLWATER ARITISINAL – TROPIC THUNDER – 4.5% Sour Ale fermented on Mango, Passionfruit & Peach

GOSES

THE BEST: MAGIC ROCK – SALTY KISS – 4.1% Gose flavoured with Gooseberry, Sea Buckthorn and Sea Salt

Quite simply put, my favourite beer of all time. It won’t change your life, but it will offer layers of flavour and instant liquid gratification each and every time. Pictured below, paired with the ‘Johnny Vegas’ burger (garnished with a slice of black pudding & a petite jam donut) from Annie’s Burger Shack in Nottingham.

Salty Kiss

THE REST: BEAVERTOWN – TEMPUS PROJECT EL MARIACHI – 5% El Mariachi Tequila Barrel Aged Gose Infused with Lime & Sea Salt

WILD BEER CO – SLEEPING LEMONS – 3.6% Gose Infused with Salt-Preserved Lemons

WESTBROOK BREWING CO – KEY LIME PIE – 4% Lime Infused Gose

MODERN TIMES BEER – FRUITLANDS – 4.8% Blood Orange & Hibiscus Gose

LAMBICS & OTHER SOUR BEERS

THE BEST: BRASSERIE-BROUWERIJ CANTILLON – ROSE DE GAMBRINUS – 5% Framboise Lambic

A Holy Grail for beer hunters with an international cult following; Cantillon are one of the most highly regarded Belgian family brewers in the world. Rose de Gambrinus is a raspberry lambic (framboise), utilising the maceration of frozen raspberries in 20 month old lambic for months at a time. After maceration, the fruited beer is blended into two-thirds its’ quantity with young lambic; the resulting product is pure decadence.

THE REST: MAD HATTER – TZATZIKI SOUR – 4.3% Tzatziki Kettle Sour

LINDEMANS/MIKKELLER – SPONTANBASIL – 6% Blend of 1 & 2 Year Old Lambics fermented on Oak with Fresh Basil Herb

8 WIRED – HIPPY BERLINER – 4% Berliner Weisse with US/NZ hops

TABLE BEERS

THE BEST: THE KERNEL – TABLE BEER – 3.4% Table Beer

The Kernel were the first brewery to dig its’ heels into the now renowned ‘Bermondsey Beer Mile’ and they have been setting benchmarks ever since. A brewery shrouded in the sophistication of being understated, this beer takes on the namesake of its style and incidentally is the best example I have enjoyed to date. Low ABV and massive amounts of aroma & flavour allows this uber-sessionable beer to set a very high bar for other brewers attempting to perfect the style.

THE REST: MIKKELLER – DRINK’IN CUCUMBER BERLINER – 2.7% Cucumber Berliner Weisse

WILD CARD

MIKKELLER – NELSON SAUVIN DRY HOPPED BRUT – 9% Dry Hopped Belgian Wild Ale Aged in Chardonnay Barrels

Could you fit anymore buzzwords in one beer? Mikkeller are not to be taken lightly when they throw around these big hitting brewing techniques, a ballast for innovation since their inception in 2006, the Danish brewery have been continually hitting the mark on many ambitiously formulated and expertly executed beers.

Combining the trendy Nelson Sauvin (NZ) hop with a refined, traditional continental style this beer is dry and estery with massive character. To finish, Mikkeller have fermented with champagne yeast and aged in white wine barrels. Get a 750ml sharer bottle of this to celebrate a special summer occasion or to take centrepiece of an alfresco dinner party.

Mikkeller Brut.jpg

 

HONOURABLE MENTION

SALOPIAN – DARWIN’S ORIGIN – 4.3% Bitter

It would be remiss not to mention something simple, something entrenched in British tradition, something that can be appreciate regardless of budget, context or company – a humble cask bitter. Initially brewed in 2009, the bicentennial anniversary of the birth of Charles Darwin, this beer pays homage to Shrewsbury’s own pride and joy. As if to take a brief from the theory of evolution, Salopian have produced a fantastic copper coloured bitter, a style that is the perfect embodiment of traditional British beer, and have hopped with amongst others, Galaxy and once again, that oh-so trendy Nelson Sauvin.

The finished ale showcases the very best of Old and New World ingredients, a perfectly knitted together beer that laces the glass and inspires curiosity in the drinker sip after sip. If you’re in a pub beer garden this summer, make sure this pint is in your hand.

These are my top summer beers to look out for in 2017 – what are yours?

Author: onefortybeers

A new blog with irreverent beer reviews and industry observations.

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