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Take the Edge Off a Hot Afternoon

Summer seasonals make for a refreshing reward


It's officially summer, and we have the heat to prove it. Fortunately, we also have a trio of new seasonals that will take the edge off a hot afternoon, or make the perfect, refreshing reward for a well mowed lawn. Don't have any grass to tame? Then celebrate your liberation from that tedious chore with any one of the following:

Ninkasi Brewing Co. Radiant Ale

This Eugene, Ore., entry pours a copper-tinged amber with a worthy head that collapses quickly. The hop presence on the nose is subtle and lightly herbaceous, but sweet malt aromas are more dominant. This brew offers a decent hop bite from start to finish, backed by toasty malt and sweet fruit flavors. The beer finishes with a refreshing bitterness and a bit of crisp citrus.

Odell Brewing Co. St. Lupulin Extra Pale Ale

From Colorado, this brew has a lightly hazy golden pour with a thin head. Things get interesting with the first whiff of enticingly floral- and pine-tinged hops, backed by hints of peach and citrus. The flavors don't take a back seat, with heady hops playing against smooth malt in an impeccably balanced brew colored by ripe mango, spicy apple and peach. Named for the hop cone resin (lupulin) that is an essential beer ingredient, this is a deliciously drinkable summer brew.

Widmer Brothers Marionberry Hibiscus Gose

A tribute to north German wheat beers, which are typically tart with a salt tinge and a touch of coriander, this Portland, Ore., brewery adds berry and hibiscus to the mix. Matt Gelsthorpe, "the Beer Guy" at Boise Co-op calls this the rose of beers, and it's an apt description. This brew pours a hazy, rhubarb pink with a decent head and light aromas of grain, currant and berry. It's delightfully different and eminently drinkable, marked by lively, just tart fruit flavors with a salty edge and subtle spice.