5 Deliciously-Unique Beers to Drink on this Summer

by Caitlin J

Summer: when the sun is beating down and all you want to do is cool off with an ice-cold, invigorating beer. Summer brings out more and more seasonal craft brews each year, and it can definitely grow confusing as trends grow and shrink. It seems, at least IMO, that a summer beer’s greatness always lies in two key factors: its “day-drinkability” (aka a low-key ABV%) and a light, refreshing flavor.

So check out this short list of the five beers that I’ll be chilling with all summer and leave a comment of your favorite summertime beer, I’m always down to try new brews 🙂 ALSO, cheers to the comeback of my blog, Big World, Small Girl. Just in time for my cross-country move to Austin, Texas! Don’t forget to subscribe!

1. Dead Rise Old Bay Summer Ale – Herb/spiced beer
Flying Dog Brewery / Maryland
25 IBU / 5.6% ABV


Ok, if you grew up in the mid-Atlantic region of the US, there’s a real good chance you’re gonna love this beer. Flying Dog has taken Old Bay to a place no one could imagine. Dead Rise summer seasonal is brewed to bring out the intense, delicious, flavor of Old Bay. The Old Bay isn’t overwhelming and you can taste citrusy hops that balance everything. With a crisp, tart finish it’s a great beer to eat with seafood or have in the cooler at cook-outs.



2. Shiner Prickly Pear – Fruit beer
Spoetzl Brewery / Texas
20 IBU / 4.9% ABV

shiner-prickly-pearReason no. 352654362 why summertime is the best time is because of Shiner’s Prickly Pear seasonal beer. The fruit of the prickly pear cactus, which is native to this brewery’s region, gives the beer it’s “tart, citrusy flavor and a crisp finish.” The flavor is pretty strong on the fruity flavors but there is not much sweetness. In the background was some wheat and barley malt just hanging out. Serve this beer icy cold to bring out the best of the light body and the fruit character!


3. Cran-Gose – Gose
Devils Backbone Brewing Company / Virginia
4 IBU / 4.0% ABV


I recently visited Devils Backbone Outpost Brewery and Tap Room (which is different from their brewpub in Roseland which I visited not too long ago) and got to experience their brand-new gose straight from the tap. It’s a traditional gose brewed with “heaps of pureed cranberry,” light, fruity, pink-hued, and naturally, mega tart. Basically, it’s perfect for making adventures on a hot summer day. Don’t let the sour smell get you, that’s just how gose style beer goes. The feel when you drink it is a little fizzy, you can see all the bubbles sticking to the sides, and it is a bit dry which is surprising for something brewed with fruit.

4. Sunshine Pils – Pilsner
Troegs Independent Brewing / Pennsylvania
45 IBU / 4.5% ABV


Crisp, clean, lemony, and slightly sweet, it’s everything you could want in a summertime beer. This Pennsylvania brewery is one I have been digging lately, and I was once again delighted to try another delicious beer from them. The color, yellow, honey, and almost pale-straw, either way, it is beautiful and well-deserving of the “Sunshine” namesake. It’s so, so drinkable; whether you just finished working outside or you’re enjoying lunch with some friends, it’s gonna fit!




5. Cock-a-Doodle Brew Coffee Ale – Cream ale
Parkway Brewing Company / Virginia
5.90% ABV


So last summer, my most favorite brewery blessed upon us in SWVA a one-of-a-kind coffee ale. Brewed with cold-brew coffee from local Floyd fair-trade business, Red Rooster Coffee Roasters , this beer tastes like an iced black coffee had babies with an amber or brown ale. The aroma is dark roast coffee and a bit of dark chocolate with a beautiful yellow-orange color. A bit heavier in body than the rest of these beers but the similarity that I taste to iced coffee is why it is on this list. Plus, Parkway now sells this beer in bottles in many of the local grocery stores, and the limited availability means I must stock up.

** BONUS!!!

6. Modelo Especial – Lager
Group Modelo / Mexico
4.40% ABV

Modelo_Pint_Bottle Ok; bonus beer time! We don’t always have that craft beer budget but that doesn’t mean we have to settle for less.  Mexican beer, in general, is very appropriate for summer weather. Modelo is my favorite, both Especial and Negro, but the Especial is especially good (see what I did there) for hot days floating on the river. Light, refreshing, and cheap, it’s a great sub for watery Corona and it’s just as easy to find!

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