I think we’ve all had enough of winter, so right now I’m going to focus on looking ahead to some warmer weather.
I realize sunshine and beach weather isn’t exactly around the corner, but all this recent snow has me ready for some (enjoyable) time outside. Naturally, that got me thinking about what I’ll be drinking when some higher temperatures make their welcome return and we all start spending more time outdoors.
Now I’m usually an IPA guy, which are great for this time of year or for sitting around a campfire, but they aren’t always great when you’re running around under the hot sun. At least that’s how it was before the recent explosion in “session IPAs,” which aim at maintaining the flavor and hoppiness of an IPA while providing a more manageable alcohol content.
The concept of “session” beer, or even wine, isn’t a new one. It’s been around hundreds of years, actually, traced back to the monks who became the world’s first brewmasters. The idea is simple. Beer tastes great, and it’s fun to drink a lot of it, but that isn’t always the best idea.
That’s where a session beer comes in, it allows you to keep drinking for an extended period, something that isn’t typically possible, or at least advisable, with full blown IPAs.
I guess I started to notice session IPAs a few summers ago, like I said the idea is not a new one. Back then it seemed like there were
just a few options. Founders’ All-Day IPA and Stone’s Go To IPA were the first I remember it trying, but these days there a dozens of
breweries getting into the session business.
Downingtown’s Victory Brewing Co. recently released Anniversary 19 to celebrate the brewery’s birthday, guess what kind of beer it is.
It’s not the first session beer Victory has made, either.
Ratebeer.com, a website that allows users to vote on their favorite beer by type, has a list of 50 different beers in its Session IPA category.
If I have to pick a favorite, I’m going to pick Carton Boat Beer. It’s delicious and hoppy, but light and manageable. It lives up to it’s name, perfect for a long day out on the water under the warm sun. Now only if the weather would cooperate.
Rough Draught is written by Digital First Media staff writer Michael N. Price. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @MikePriceWrites.