Excitement over the coming of summer inspired us to pick a trio of lighter, easy drinking brews, each a distinctively different entry in its category.
Columbus Brewing Company Thunderlips IPA
The fine straw-yellow pour gives way to a copious head and a pineapple nose that intrigues. Billed as an “experimental” pale ale, Thunderlips weighs in at 5.3 percent ABV for good sessionable summer ale. The floral chamomile notes are beautifully balanced with a citrusy crispness and a bright resinous finish. Dry, yet not at all bitter, this is one experiment that passes with flying colors.
Urban Artifact Sliderule Chocolate Raspberry Gose
The aroma here matches what the label promises: cocoa, coriander, raspberry and vanilla. At 4.9 percent ABV, this gose is much lighter than expected. The tart berries, cocoa and vanilla are there, but could almost use a bit more backbone to bring them forward in this interesting take on the tangy gose. A slightly salty finish balances the richer chocolate, vanilla and raspberry notes.
Kindred Artisan Ales Hawaiian Shirt
The fruity bouquet and murky pinky color that fill your glass appear more like a cosmopolitan cocktail than a brew. But that color confirms the hibiscus and mango infused in this Belgian-style white ale. At 5.3 percent ABV, the potential sweetness of a plummy mango flavor is equalized by the lemony tartness of hibiscus. Good carbonation adds to a nice clean finish for an interesting beer that’s sure to refresh on a hot summer day.