I sit here sad and crying in my Spaten Oktoberfest as I realize that my favorite seasonal beers are now vanishing from the shelves until late Spring of 2013. Oh well, it gives me something to chat about and something to look forward to. So here’s my spin on two different summer ales before the season is completely gone.
Summer Ales are great for many reasons. They go great with half naked women in a boat, in a pool, or anywhere there is water. Most of them are light and easy to drink when it’s 105 outside and you can’t breathe or if your inside watching the Olympics bored to tears because basketball and football season has not started up yet. Summer Ales literally are for everyone that drinks beer whether your a craft brew conisseur or you are a red blooded American that only drinks light beer from the two powerhouses most of the time.
How can that be? How can I, Joe six-pack like something that doesn’t come in a blue or silver can? That doesn’t make sense??? I’ve already said! They are light and easy to drink. So sit down the freaking can that changes color when it gets warm and tastes like pisswater and grab one of these.
I’ve decided to compare two Kölsch style beers that are made right here in America.
Goose Island: Summertime versus Harpoon: Summer Beer. Battle of the Kölsch
Summertime from the famous Chicago brewery Goose Island is one of my favorite summer beers. No doubt about it and it is easy drinking. This is a German style Kölsch that anyone who has ever put a pint glass to their lips will enjoy. I give it a 7 out of 10 on Jon’s Boozehoundz rating scale. (Jon’s scale to be published soon!)
For those of you stuck on the word Kölsch…it is pretty simple. It is a style of beer that originated in Cologne, Germany. It’s straw yellow in color and not overly hoppy. It is warm fermented then cold conditioned, or better known as lagered. (Beer lesson of the day. See, it’s not all stupidity here.)
Only one problem though for us folks that live in Tennessee. There isn’t a distributor that carries Goose Island currently in East Tennessee to my knowledge. I try to load up when I head back to Kentucky on beers like this that I am unable to purchase in this odd region of the country with less selection and more strict alcohol laws. But, such is life.
I put it head to head against Harpoon’s Summer Beer. It is a Kölsch style lager as well, so I am completely comparing apples to apples here.
Harpoon is a close second to Summertime, but falls a little short. It is a bit more hoppy than I would prefer for an easy drinking, summer Kölsch style beer. But, if it’s all I have to choose from in the fridge, then it will work with me. I give it a 6 on Jon’s boozehoundz rating scale.
If you are unfamiliar with Harpoon brewery and the UFO brand, be sure to check them out whenever you can. They have many beers to choose from. You can find them at many establishments around the country as well as right here in Knoxville, Tennessee at stores like The Casual Pint, which has two locations in town.
Either way you can’t go wrong with these brews. Both are very light, easy drinkers that anyone can down a pint of if they are thirsty. They seem to go down waaaay easy if you have been mowing a yard or done anything outside and have started to sweat. I don’t imagine you would run in the house and crack open a coffee porter or stout to quench your thirst. If you do, you are demented and need help. Grab one of these summer beers next time instead of old faithful. You will be pleasantly surprised.