Ahh, we’ve finally escaped that brutal winter. Now’s the time for Spring and Summer beers! So—feel like having a few (or more) hop-forward beers at an afternoon barbecue but not interested in the 6% – 7% ABV (or more in a lot of cases) that comes with your typical IPA? A Session IPA is designed to deliver all the hop characteristics one seeks in an IPA but has a significantly lower ABV (usually around 4% – 5%) and is generally a tad easier on the palette.
Below are some session IPAs we have at Prost! Get ready for some easy drinking.
- Firestone Walker – Easy Jack IPA (4.5% ABV)
- Firestone Walker is well known in the craft beer world for its big west coast style IPAs. Easy Jack upholds this reputation. Whether you’re a fan of Union Jack/Double Jack or just a lover of big bold West Coast IPAs, Easy Jack is a fantastic session beer that doesn’t make you feel like you’re sacrificing flavor for lower ABV.
- Flying Dog – Easy IPA (4.7% ABV)
- Flying Dog may be most well-known for its eye-catching Belgian-style IPA, “Raging Bitch” (which routinely gets giggles from patrons at Prost!) and its fantastic, albeit unusual branding. However, shock-value and eye appeal aside, Flying Dog is a producer of some great beer. Easy IPA is a shining example of Flying Dog’s work and lives up to its name of being exceedingly easy drinking.
- Otter Creek Brewing Co. – Over Easy (4.6% ABV)
- Brewmaster Mike is responsible for quite a few remarkable beers over at OCB. Their labels feature billowing smoke, Clementine and Oslo (Mike’s VW bus and tie-dye toting Burnese mountain dog) and words like “slice, dosing and stash.” They also claim to brew their beer with 100% positive vibrations which I feel inclined to believe. If you enjoy an easy beer brewed by easy-going people, grab an Adirondack chair, put your bare feet in the grass and inhale this crushable beverage.
- Founders – All Day IPA (4.7% ABV)
- This Grand Rapids power-house is no stranger to the spotlight. Like Firestone, Founders has far-reaching distribution, and a great year-round selection of beers. As Founders writes, “[this beer] keeps your taste satisfied while keeping your senses sharp.” While going all day seems a bit ambitious to me, this is definitely one beer that would fit the bill.
- Baxter Brewing Co. – Ceremony (4.2% ABV)
- Baxter Brewing of Lewiston Maine is awesome. ‘Nuff said. This session beer was made to celebrate four years of making craft beer, (here’s to many more)! Ceremony is a session IPA brewed and flavored with green tea. It’s a refreshing deviation from the traditional and at 4.2% it’s a veritable porch pounder!
- Sebago Brewing Co. – Simmer Down (4.9% ABV)
- Sebago has a portfolio of some very solid beers. This summer session is just short of 5% and has good citrus qualities and a crisp finish. Sebago uses the slogan, “brewed for times like these.” If it just so happens to be a hot summer day, then I agree; it’s times like these that call for Simmer Down.
- White Birch Brewing – Hop Session (5% ABV)
- This Hooksett, NH brewery knows summer beers! If you haven’t tried a Berliner Weisse by them or Hop Session, do yourself a favor and right that wrong. Hop Session sits pretty at 5% and uses a blend of west coast hops to deliver a balanced bitterness in combination with a resiny mouth feel. Yum.