Brews for the summertime by Robin Loomis
Here in South Boulder we have what seems to be more hop heads per capita than anywhere else in the world, which is something to be proud of. However, as the weather gets hot and dry it just doesn’t seem like hoppy ales are the best way to quench your thirst. Lucky for us Coloradans our wonderful local micro-breweries offer many styles for every kind of beer drinker.
At Pettyjohn’s you will find an array of summer options, such as: pilsner, American lager, wheat ale, kolsch, blonde ale, and even some hoppy lagers (for those who just cannot stray too far from hops). These styles likely still use hops in the brewing processes, but minimally; they are united in that they are very light in color and alcohol, which is why I think they are great for the hot summer months. One long -standing notable blonde is the True Blonde Ale from Ska Brewing, a 5.3% American Blonde style that tastes of sweeter malt and citrusy lemon, with a subtle hop presence.
Kolsch is a very unique style of beer that is a hybrid of Ales and Lagers, using an Ale yeast yet cold fermenting as though it were a Lager. This offers a snappy and light ale that is best served very cold. Crystal Springs is a local micro with humble roots, and makes the very popular Summertime Ale, a great example of what a kolsch can be.
Pilsners and Lagers are fermented in colder conditions creating bottom fermentation opposed to the top fermentation of Ales. In general Pilsners and Lagers are a great option if crispness is the sensation you are looking for (which is what I seek out in my summer beers). There are many notable Lagers in our store to try such as the long standing Mamas Little Yella Pils from Oskar Blues, or my new favorite Creedence Pilsner from Crazy Mountain Brewing, both Czech style. If a hoppy pils intrigues you like I know it does me, you should definitely check out Epic brewings Hop Syndrome Lager, a crisp 5% abv Lager with a notable hop presence that is mellow on the pallet compared to most hoppy beers.
So if you are not convinced at the pleasures of lighter style micros, there’s only one way to really know… come on in to Pettyjohn’s and let us guide your taste buds to a refreshing new beer that most certainly compliments our hot and dry Colorado summers.
** Don’t forget our weekly, free, in-store tastings every Thursday and Friday night. From 5 to 7 PM. A great start of the weekend, and an opportunity to try-before-you-buy.**