Description: Summer Ale pours a hazy golden yellow with a frothy white head that leaves a trace on lacing on the glass. The aroma is bright and perfect for summer with notes of lemon, sweet wheat, and touches of spices on the backend. The taste follows the nose with wonderful citrus notes of lemons and hints of spice throughout with a deliciously light and sweet wheat malt bill. The full mouthfeel is incredibly smooth and somewhat surprising for a summer ale as many are very light and thin. The moderate carbonation aids in the refreshing quality of the beer. Sam Adams seems to brew great beers for each season and their Summer Ale is no exception. It is a great beer to welcome in the warm weather.
Glassware: The summer-like aromas within the beer should be enjoyed and, a glass that captures them best, services the beer. Sam Adams has a line of glassware that is a true workhorse for a wide variety of styles, including this beer. However, the newly released Spiegelau wheat beer glass is also great for this beer as well as a standard snifter.
Food pairing: Summer Ale is the perfect beer to have with any barbecue dish or standard American faire; however it is also light enough to enjoy with salads. A summer salad topped with goat cheese, strawberries, almonds and light vinaigrette makes for a light afternoon pairing that will showcase the deep flavor profile within the beer. If you are looking for something a bit heavier then don’t hold back and fire up the barbecue. Summer Ale goes extremely well with ribs, burgers, chicken, sausage and pork straight from the grill. The light spicing and crisp body hold enough heft to withstand even the heartiest of barbecue sauces and can scrub the palate clean in between bites. Don’t be afraid to pile the toppings on your burger, this beer is a true workhorse. However, a lazy Friday night with friends always calls for pizza and this is also a beer that goes great with pizza. Some exceptionally great toppings to have on your pizza with Summer Ale are pepperoni, mushroom, sausage, and ham.
The Final Word: Sam Adams is a pillar within the craft beer industry and has long held the torch lighting the way to great beer. Summer Ale has been a staple for them and is a great beer to kick off the season with each year. The light characteristics make it a great beer for backyard cookouts, long hikes, or lazy days around the pool. It is also a beer that is fairly complex when compared to many other summer offerings and that makes it a great beer for many craft beer lovers to still enjoy no matter how jaded they have become. Sam Adams proves again and again they are not only one of the biggest craft breweries out there, but also still one of the best!
Remember, enjoy responsibly!