The Best Seasonal Summer Beers to Drink Right Now

Innovative IPAs, refreshing lagers and suds with a citrus twist are up for grabs

2021 Summer Beers Promo
Left: Jack’s Abby

Being well-versed in the art of imbibing takes some practice. Or at least, some well-intentioned know-how. Think of exploring the world of beer like exploring the world of watches or rugged outerwear: Shop with intention and care, then enjoy the fruits of your “research.”


Stocking your beer fridge for summer is actually a lot like building your seasonal wardrobe. You want variety and versatility, which is what makes the best seasonal beers all the more important for the hot summer months. What you imbibe really is as important as what you wear. Pick the wrong menswear and you’ll overheat; pick the “wrong” beer, and you’ll be stuck with a six-pack you can’t finish.

Whether you want a crisp and cold sipper after a day on the water, an English porter to enjoy around the bonfire or a surprisingly refreshing IPA (India Pale Ale) to toast with friends, there’s a beer to match every palette. That’s especially true even if you’re new to the wide, delicious world of hops. Here are a few favorites to sip this summer, from breweries big and small: 

Threes Brewing Kicking & Screaming

Threes Brewing

Threes Brewing, out of Brooklyn, does a remarkable job at making beer that’s both relatable and bold, beer that’s easy to pick out of a lineup. Kicking & Screaming gets its distinctive refined taste (with hints of Nilla wafers, believe it or not) from fermentation in oak barrels, or foudres. From $21.99 

Bell’s Tropical Oberon

Bell’s

Enjoying an Oberon on the lake is a Michigan tradition, but you can get this much-loved classic plenty of different places these days. Oberon itself is already best enjoyed with an orange as a garnish, but Tropical Oberon takes it a step further and adds a “mango twist.” We’ll drink to that. From $10.25

Jack’s Abby Blood Orange Wheat Radler

Jack’s Abby

The radler style came about, legend has it, after a German innkeeper blended his dwindling supply of beer with lemon soda to feed a huge gathering of cyclists. This modern edition from a Northeast favorite zests things up with Blood Orange for a refreshing finish best enjoyed around a campfire. From $10.59

Alpine Beer Co. Hoppy Birthday

Alpine Beer Company

While it’s nice to have a selection of hazy, hop-packed IPAs, sometimes, the occasion calls for something a bit lighter. Enter the Session IPA, so named because the ever-so-slightly lower ABV makes it optimal for (responsible) drinking sessions in the summer sun (or any time of year at all). From $13.99

Firestone Walker Pivo Pils

Firestone Walker

Firestone Walker is in the midst of celebrating 25 years of pioneering beer excellence, and with classics like the Pivo Pils, it’s not hard to see why. It’s a European-influenced pilsner (“pivo” literally means “beer” in Czech) that’s every bit as flavorful now as it was when it debuted last decade. Bring some to your next cookout. From $10.07

Anchor Brewing Little Weekend

Anchor Brewing

Anchor’s history as an innovative brewer precedes itself. While we love the iconic Anchor Steam, for instance, intrigue enters the equation when a brewery steers a course towards innovation in modern times. Such is the case with beers like the Little Weekend, featuring a mere 100 calories and yet tons of mango flavor. From $9 

Elysian Brewing Contact Haze IPA

Elysian Brewing

Elysian is another brewery celebrating 25 years in business, and doing so in a big way. Contact Haze IPA, the latest from the Seattle-founded brewery, is a surprisingly easy summer sipper that’s sure to satisfy even those who craves loads of hops. From $11.99

Oskar Blues Death by Flapjacks

Oskar Blues

Consider this eye-catching English porter the kind of beer to enjoy on an unseasonably breezy night around the bonfire. You get tasting notes of everything from maple to vanilla and lemon. Be sure to guard your cooler closely, because your friends will want to snag more once they’ve tried it. From $11.49

Green Flash Saturhaze IPA

Green Flash

We said there’s a beer for every palette out there, and we meant it. The Saturhaze IPA is the ideal solution if you want a hazy IPA that’s still surprisingly light (it clocks in at 4.2 percent alcohol by volume). All the haze and not too overpowering? That’s more like it. From $10.99

Narragansett Bohemian Pilsner

Narragansett

Narragansett’s classic Lager is also an undeniable summer favorite, but this traditional pilsner provides more flavor and aroma for when you want a change of pace. However, it tastes just as great ice-cold as the timeless lager for which the famed brewery is known. Better still: Enjoy this one in Rhode Island itself on an East Coast road trip. From $9.36

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Beau Hayhoe