All beers are summer beers when you drink it in the summer. But when we talk about the best beers to drink in the summer, we have a few styles in mind. The ideal summer beer is easy to drink — and easy to drink a lot of. Think: crispy lagers, juicy IPAs and soda-like sours. These are the beers you reach for over a tall glass of water, not because they're any more hydrating, but because they just go down so damn easy. So while the kids are grabbing their juice boxes, reach for one of these great summer beers.
Jack’s Abby House Lager
Style: Helles Lager
Brewery Location: Framingham, MA
Jack's Abby manages to be nearly everywhere, but doesn't get the credit it deserves for making one of the best lager-style beers ever. Its House Lager, styled after a landbier, is as golden as golden can be. It has a comforting malty backbone with a nice bread-like sweetness and mild, pleasant bitterness.
Sierra Nevada Summer Break
Style: Session Hazy IPA
Brewery Location: Chico, CA
Just like summer breaks in school, you’ll hope this beer never ends. Sierra Nevada has yet to disappoint in its 40-year lifetime. This session IPA retains the tropical flavors and haziness of a full-on IPA, but manages to bring it down to a crushable 4.6 percent ABV.
Hopewell Brewing Scenic Route
Brewery Location: Chicago, IL
Ditch the frat bro Blue Moons, and discover what a witbier should really taste like. Samantha Lee's Hopewell Brewing makes a seasonal wheat beer, Scenic Route, that's zesty and hazy thanks to the addition of orange peel, coriander and both raw and malted wheat.
Brooklyn Brewery Pulp Art
Style: Hazy IPA
Brewery Location: Brooklyn, NY
Somehow Brooklyn Brewery managed to capture a taste of the tropics in a 12-ounce can. The brewery's latest release, Pulp Art, holds its own against the flagship Brooklyn Lager, and provides a nice hazy alternative to the East IPA. Take a sip and get notes of all your favorite tropical fruits, like mango and pineapple, minus the mosquitoes.
Dogfish Head SeaQuench Ale
Style: Session Sour
Brewery Location: Milton, DE
SeaQuench is a bunch of beer styles in one, but all you need to know is it’s damn good. It's also sort of like a beer, wine and margarita got really drunk together and ended up in a can together. It's highly drinkable like a Kölsch, slightly salty and sour like a gose and tart like a Berliner Weisse.
New Belgium Sour IPA
Style: Sour IPA
Brewery Location: Fort Collins, CO2
This is a shockingly easy-to-drink IPA considering its high ABV. It probably has to do with its bright, zippy acidity. New Belgium crafts its Sour IPA by brewing its base IPA, that's then blended with a bit of its Foeder-Aged Golden Sour. The beer gives notes of lychee and peaches, and if you drink too many, you might think you're actually eating those fruits.