It's happening all over the place these days - everyone is weighing in on their favorite summer beers. I don't just mean you, me and all of our favorite craft beer bartenders but rather some of the more popular online and print magazines and newsletters have jumped on the craft beer bandwagon. As a craft beer enthusiast (READ: nerd with a slight drinking problem) it always intrigues me how these lists are seemingly created. Sometimes the lists are for the masses - widely known beers that everyone can relate to (even the ice cold blue mountain drinkers), sometimes they include some bonafide craft brews but try to include brews from every state/region and end up containing a lot of filler brews that no one can either find or would drink during the hot months of the summer and other times the list is one of beer snobitude - impossible to find, extra expensive and rarely very palatable for the type of summer drinking we all like to partake in.
And sometimes, these popular media outlets hit it right on the head. Enter Esquire Online Newsletter's "Best Beers for Summer 2013." Despite Esquire's know-how when it comes to cooking up the most delicious man-food ever and their top of the line fiction/non-fiction writing staff I was wary that their summer beer list would be more on par with their men's style section - snobby, expensive and mainstream. I was definitely proven wrong.
Although they definitely make a point to include beer from a variety of regions and definitely include some more mainstream breweries/beers the choices are a mixture of unique and intriguing (Cigar City Guava Grove and New Belgium Rolle Bolle), delightfully surprising and slightly rare (Brooklyn Blast and Deschutes River Ale - can't get it in NY) and as for the obvious choices - obviously delicious enough to be on any craft beer enthusiasts summer list (Victory Golden Monkey, Bell's Oberon and Avery Joe's Premium American Pilsner).
The descriptions of each beer are fun to read and the food pairings will make your mouth water. Check it out here, this one gets the Beer Friend's stamp of approval:
Other Lists for You Craft Beer Masses to Enjoy and Judge Accordingly: