Vices

Leap Into Spring With the 10 Best Spring Beers

summit beer

summit beer

The calendar may have told us that the first day of Spring was on March 20, 2013. But for much of the U.S., it really hasn’t felt much like Spring until now.

With the end of winter now behind us, we can finally sit back and sip on some seasonal brews crafted just for this time of year. Sure, we may not be able to sit outside at night with just a t-shirt on, but the time has definitely come to transition from those heavy and warm winter beers to the crisp and lighter options that Spring has to offer.

So, without further ado, here are 10 of the best beers for Spring 2013.

10. Weihenstephaner Vitus

The Weihenstephan Brewery, located outside of Munich, Germany, is often recognized as the world’s oldest working brewery, since it’s been in operation since 1040. This weizenbock offering is a light-colored Bavarian hefe that contains banana, lemon, orange, and clove flavors and a strong 7.7 percent alcohol strength.

9. Summit Maibock

Did you know that St Paul’s Summit Brewing Company’s first brewhouse was in Bavaria? This explains why they’ve perfected their own version of Maibock. Summit’s Maibock is a dark blonde-colored 6.5 ABV offering that has been fermented at slightly warmer temperatures. This is done to get more of the spicy aromas from the hops. It combines Moravian 37 and Munich malts with Saaz and Mt. Hood hops to create a sweet toasted flavor that has just a touch of spice and pepper to it.

8. Alaskan Birch Bock

The Alaskan Brewing Company in Juneau has created a copper-colored Doppelbock-style ale that represents its home well. Their Birch Bock includes unique ingredients like Alaskan birch maple syrup, hop varieties from the Pacific Northwest, premium two-row and specialty malts and, of course, glacier-fed water. It also packs a nice punch with its 8.5 percent alcohol strength.

7. Founders All Day IPA

This IPA from the Grand Rapids microbrew is literally something you’ll want to sip on all day, especially with its low 4.7 ABV. Sure, it’s got that bitter and tangy that any well-hopped IPA contains. But, it also has a balanced and clean finish that’s perfect for this time of year.

6. Sierra Nevada Southern Hemisphere Harvest

What makes this ale so delicious? Probably because of the freshly picked hops from New Zealand, which just so happens to be the only location on the planet that harvests hops in March and April, hence its name. This rich copper-hued beer is a 6.7 percent alcohol strength brew that is a nice malty, hoppy, and spicy offering from the Chico, CA brewery.

5. Samuel Adams Alpine Spring

The Boston Brewery seems to have nailed down the seasonal offerings. And, their hazy, golden-hued Alpine Spring is another example of how well Samuel Adams does seasonal beer. With citrus flavors, like lemons and oranges, it’s full of fruit flavors and aromas. Combine that with a slight spicy taste, and you’re in for a treat this Spring.

4. Dogfish Head Aprihop

Has this Milton, Delaware brewery ever let you down? We didn’t think so. Their Aprihop offering is a sweet American IPA brewed with Pilsner and Crystal malts with a 7.0 ABV. And, of course, it has plenty of fruity undertones from the apricots.

3. The Bruery Saison De Lente

While this is the perfect decision for Easter, it remains one of Spring’s most exceptional beers. This pale golden ale from Placentia, CA brewery The Bruery has green apple and lemon aromas with pale malts, Belgian yeast and a spiciness as you take your first couple of sips. It also features an enjoyable 6.5 ABV.

2. Victory Swing Session Saison

At first you may scoff at the Downingtown, PA brewery’s Saison offering. However, this hazy golden beer has a pleasant peppery, lemon zest, apricot, golden raisins, and dates aroma. As for the taste, it has an enjoyable floral bite with its lemon zest, floral esters, peppery, golden raisins, clove, yeasty notes, cinnamon, clove, a little bit of nutmeg. And, with only 4.5 percent alcohol strength, you can keep enjoying this tasty beer for a long time.

1. Widmer Columbia Common Spring Ale

Hailing from Portland, Oregon is this dark, amber-hued hybrid of ale and lager yeast strains which has notes of citrus while giving off a floral aroma. This toasty ale also has characteristics of grassy and spicy hops which is backed by a malty and bready backbone. This 4.7 ABV is crisp, clean and leaves you with a dry finish, which is perfect for this time of year.

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