Low-alcohol beers are becoming increasingly popular because they are easy to drink and go well with any meal, at any time of day.
And for the calorie-conscious connoisseur who still wants to enjoy themselves, low-alcohol beers are just what they need. Whatever your reason for looking for beers that take less effort to drink, it’s never been easier to find something delicious with a variety of styles, from Radlers to Pale Ales.
Community as API; $9/12oz 6 Pack, 97 points. A low abortion rate API that doesn’t sacrifice taste. Cut from the fabric of West Coast APIs, this light golden brown ale generally has a slight hop bitterness, but lots of pine, green onion and some dried orange peel. Enjoy your stay by the fire. -John Hall
Firestone Walker Flyjack Hazy India Pale Ale; 6 pack, 97 points. Containing only 96 calories, IPA Session tastes like a full-bodied IPA, as you’d expect from this highly respected hop brewery. It’s a lively blend of citrus and mint that leaves the palate fresh. Perfect for a warm day in the garden, there’s a malt backbone that looks like a cracker and balances out the beer. -JH.
Wormtown Rocket Pale Ale; pack of 4 $11/16 oz bottles, 97 points. A wonderful combination of orange peel, tangerine and apricot is balanced by a malty and pungent flavor that makes it a refreshing beer. Brewed with rye from the local maltster, this is the type of Pale Ale that locals are lucky enough to have access to and beer lovers should look for. -JH.
The Side Project brews Grisette Mix #6; $15/750ml, 95 points. A beautiful aldeanslok, enlivened only by a ripe strawberry and peach. The champagne-like carbonation awakens the taste buds to reveal a sweet wheat character reminiscent of lightly toasted country bread, followed by a bite of slightly earthy hops. At the end is the symbol of the cloud oak, which was used to mature the beer. This beer manages to be both traditional and modern with every sip. -JH.
Wowza Falls! Pale Ale; 10-12 oz. 6-pack, 92 points. Craft breweries are trying to broaden their appeal to new consumer groups and some, like Deschutes, are turning to sports chains. This Pale Ale is glossy, with a lemon curd and sweet orange tones, all balanced by a malt ready to go. At 100 calories per serving, it’s not too much of a reward after an intense workout. -JH.
Euphonia Pilsner from the New Kingdom; pack of 6, $10/12 oz, 92 stitches. While lagers are very pleasant to drink, sometimes the situation requires just one beer, such as at a business dinner. You want something tasteful and encouraging that will satisfy you for the first time. This beer, with notes of tangerine, strawberry and honeydew, has a bit of bitterness to balance the sweetness and give the crisp yeast profile a clean edge. -JH.
Apple Spice Gose Crane; 4-piece package of $13/12oz, 90 stitches. Somehow, the brewery managed to bring the full flavor of the freshly baked apple and cinnamon pie into the aroma of the beer. It’s comforting, like a warm sweater in the early days of autumn freshness. On the palate, the spiciness fades and apple appears alongside the acidic swirling head. Its color corresponds to the color of the leaves that change in autumn, and this is the time when this beer can be most appreciated. Catch of the season in a jar. -JH.
Abby Blood Jack’s Orange Wheat; 6-pack of 10/16 oz, 90 points. This combination of fruit juice and beer is sure to please lovers. Blood orange red does not overwhelm the senses. The lager style helps the fruit go from a strong, confident flavor to a beautiful peach color that is crisp and refreshing. It could easily be replaced with a mimosa for breakfast and be better than what you might find in the average golf cart, so BYO. -JH.
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Ommegang Idyll Days Pilsner; pack of 4, $11/16oz, 90 pts. The lemon blossom aroma and citrus flavor are refreshing and add a thirst-quenching element to this light, effervescent and slightly grainy beer. It shows traces of bubble gum and a slight hop bitterness. A fridge full of these at a picnic would be a great day. -JH.
Two Road Wee Demon IPA; $9/12oz 6 Pack, 90 points. A low-cal API with only 95 calories, it’s an appealing API for long afternoons at a garden party or playing softball with friends. Malt with candied orange peel and a bit of bitterness in the finish. -JH.
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