Summer reading for adults

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First Posted: 6/16/2014

Of course we all love drinking beer in the summer, but the season is also a great time to catch up on some reading, so why not combine two favorite summer activities?

The endless array of craft beer available can be a bit overwhelming when it comes to ordering at a bar, so a little knowledge goes a long way. Reading informative beer books will not only teach you more about some of your favorite beers, but you may grow to appreciate them even more when you discover great pairings, how the brewery works, or even if the beer is better with a bit of aging. There are plenty of new beer-related books to expand your mind – and palate – this summer.

“The Great Northeast Brewery Tour” by Ben Keene: If you are looking to go on any beer adventure trips this summer, this is the book to check out first. If you were not planning any beer adventure trips, this book may just change your mind. Within it is great information about the breweries and drool-inducing photos of the beers and food. From Maryland to Maine, this book has you covered with some of the best breweries in those states discussed along with all the info you need, like hours of operation and addresses for the tasting rooms.

“Vintage Beer” by Patrick Dawson: We are all familiar with the notion that aged wine typically tastes better, but did you know that this is also true for a wide range of beers? There are certainly beers that are better enjoyed fresh, but this book gives the reader a fantastic breakdown of what beers are great to age and for how long. Properly storing beer to age is also discussed, as well as tasting notes on some beers that were aged and tasted over time. “Vintage Beer” is a fantastic reference guide for those interested in getting into the hobby of aging beer.

“American Sour Beers” by Michael Tonsmeire: The sour beer style is one that is continuously gaining popularity among craft beer drinkers. It is a style that many either love or hate immediately, but over time, as one adapts to the mouth-puckering qualities, it becomes something of an obsession. While this book leans more towards the technical aspect of the beer, it is full of great information for brewers and drinkers alike. If you are a fan of this style, this is a highly recommended book that will really give you a new appreciation for sour beers.

“Craft Beer for the Homebrewer” by Michael Agnew: This is the must-have book for homebrewers who are looking to recreate their favorite beers at home. This book is packed full of beer recipes straight from the brewmasters themselves. Within this book, you will receive the recipes for Lagunitas’ Hop Stoopid, Allagash’s Black, Rogue’s Hazelnut Brown and Dead Guy ales, and Tröegs’ Nugget Nectar. The recipes are given in both liquid malt extract and all grain recipes so they can be used by brewers of all skill levels. This book alone will occupy a great deal of your summer.

“Cheese & Beer” by Janet Fletcher: Beer and food pairing has become all the rage as of late due to the wide range of flavors at play, but if you take a step back and examine simple beer and cheese pairings, a whole new world will open to you. The cheese world has long been full of wide and exotic varieties, ranging from simple cheddar to the stinkiest of French cheeses. However, this book breaks down all the subtle nuances of the cheeses and beer and examines what makes a great beer and cheese pairing. This is a great book to pick up to plan a lovely evening party at home.

Reading these books will not only give you a greater depth of knowledge about beer, they will also make your experience of eating and drinking even more enjoyable, which is perfectly timed with summer just beginning.