I’D TAP THAT: Lighten up

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Description: Hop Sun pours a clear, light honey-hue with a very thin, bright white head that leaves no amount of lacing behind on the glass. The aroma has strong notes of semi-sweet wheat malts backed by touches of lemon rinds and very subtle hints of pine from the hops. The taste brings forth a stronger presence from the sweet wheat malts before a solid punch from the hops imparts fresh citrus fruit notes and pine leaving behind a refreshingly bitter, clean and dry finish. The light body and moderate carbonation aid the summer-like sensation this beer imparts. Hop Sun is an extremely well-balanced beer and comes across as very refreshing. This beer is perfect on a hot summer day, especially when yard work is involved!

Glassware: Wheat beers have wonderful light aromatics with touches of spice that tend to bring about thoughts of summer. They should also be enjoyed cold. Glassware that accommodates both of these suggestions will best service the beer. Spiegelau recently released a wheat beer glass that is great for the beer, but a weizen or snifter glass will also be a good choice.

Food pairing: The light touches of citrus and airy qualities of the beer make it perfect for pairing with many summer favorites. If you are looking for something lighter, try pairing with a lovely summer salad with grilled chicken, fresh berries or shrimp on top with light vinaigrette. The crisp qualities from the beer will lock into the toppings, but the lightness of the beer will not overwhelm the lettuce, enhancing its natural fresh qualities instead. Meanwhile, the carbonation will scrub the palate clean. Hop Sun is also a beer that is great for backyard BBQ’s and goes extremely well with BBQ chicken, ribs and hamburgers, but don’t go too overboard on the toppings as some spicy peppers may overtake the beer. This is also a great all-around beer to keep in the fridge for any last minute get-together’s with friends or family, the perfect companion for those go-to pizza choices many make in that situation.

The Final Word: While summer is not in full bloom just yet, the weather has most definitely improved from the brutal winter that we all suffered through. This warm weather makes a strong push towards lighter summer beers and Hop Sun falls perfectly into this category. Southern Tier has been brewing perfect seasonal beers for a number of years now and seems to have the perfect beer choice for each of the four seasons. Hop Sun captures the wonderful light crispness of a wheat beer with a hefty dosing of hops that imparts delightful bitterness and dry finish. This is a beer that has something for everyone and certainly deserves a place in your hand (and mouth) this summer as the real summer heat begins to settle over the area!

Where can I get it? Currently available in 12 oz. bottles at: Exit 190 beer Deli- Dickson City; Weis Markets- Hazleton; J & H Beer- Plains Twp., Armetta’s Pizza- Chinchilla; Wegmans- Wilkes Barre; What’s Brewin’ 6 Pack Shop- Old Forge; Brews Brothers- Pittston.

Remember, enjoy responsibly!