It is the middle of summer and I’m moving out of my house. Boxes, a lot of them, heavy and awkward, are littering each room of the abode. How am I going to get this stuff out? Movers are too expensive and aren’t really considerate of your possessions. Ah! I’ll call some mates and promise that the beer will flow and the coals will be lit when the work is done. Now, what should I pour? What goes better with the season other than a swimming pool? Wheat Beer. Yes! That will quench my friends’ thirst. Fortunately the World Beer Championships has just run through the Wheat Ale category and there are some great recommendations to sample.
Let’s start with the White Ales. A classic example hailing from Canada: Unibroue’s Blanche de Chambly (90 points) is a benchmark for the style. Frothy and quenching with a finish that will keep you coming back, it is an excellent beer to session with after some good old-fashioned manual labor. If you were planning on having a snack with this one, try some goat’s cheese. Take it a step further with brown butter-seared scallops. Another notable entry would be the Issaquah Brewhouse White Frog Ale (88 points). Try some ginger-spiced shrimp with this one.
Hefeweizen is always welcome during the warmer months and you’re sure to see many fans quaffing tall glasses of this ale into the warmth of early fall. The low hop content and moderate alcohol make it very drinkable and the same characteristics make it an excellent match with lighter fair, such as seafood or chicken.
Privatebrauerei Aying produces their Bräu-Weisse (97 points). If you are new to the style, this is an excellent example to try. If you want to go the traditional route, pair this brew with some warm pretzels and weisswurst. Feeling experimental? Grill up some fatty fish and garnish with capers and lemon slices. This is a great way to refuel and replenish the system. Other excellent examples of the style included Grieskirchner Weisse (91 points), Brooklyn’s Brooklyner Weisse (89 points), and Burleigh Brewing Co.’s Burleigh Hefeweizen (85 points)―all excellent summer refreshers.
Flavored wheat ales are common in the market these days, with a myriad of flavors to be found. Samuel Adams Blackberry Wit (90 points) is a fun one. Think berry farm-fresh flavors with a clean finish, a great brew to treat yourself to after the meal, or just to whet your whistle. Breckenridge’s Agave Wheat Ale (90 points) was definitely an intriguing entry, well–balanced and quenching. Some fish tacos are in order here. Lastly, Maui Brewing’s Mana Wheat (86 points) is one to seek out; it’s brewed with Maui Gold pineapple and highly refreshing. Try this one with some roast pork sandwiches.
Hope this helps inspire some creative ways to reward your buddies for their hard work. Thanks again to all of the participation breweries and judges for their efforts. One last note, always lift with your legs! Cheers!