The Best Beers For Planning Your Socially Distant Fourth Of July

A nice, frosty beer is good any time of year. Especially when the heat hits. Especially on Fourth of July. Even if this Fourth looks to be a mellow one because of COVID, you’re still going to want some beers on hand. Besides, nothing pairs better with grilled hot dogs and burgers, if that’s in your game plan.

“Nothing is more refreshing in the summer heat or under the pandemic pressure than an ice-cold beer,” says Melissa Reigle, beverage manager/ head bartender at Byblos in Miami. “After a crazy ride for most businesses so far in 2020, I’d say the best beer to drink, regardless of style or preference, is the beer at your local brewery.”

Definitely try to grab a six-pack or two from your local spot. But if you also want to support your favorite bottle shop, try one of these bartender-approved brews.

Wild Heaven Emergency Drinking Beer

Bill Myers, bartender at Kimpton Brice Hotel in Savannah, Georgia

Wild Heaven Emergency Drinking Beer will be the go-to for the Fourth of July this year. I have to stick with a beer brewed here in Georgia, and what better choice than this super crushable pilsner/gose hybrid? The packaging is incredible and with it being 4.5 percent ABV, it’s suitable for the marathon of a day that we think of with the Fourth of July.

Toast Pale Ale

Sondre Kasin, principal bartender at Cote in New York City

One of my favorite beers at the market now is Toast Ale. This Brooklyn based brewery is using surplus bread instead of barley — which is really unique and innovative. I have not tried their full range, but their American pale is delicious and not too heavy on the hops. It’s a crisp, hoppy, and citrus-driven American pale ale. Great for the summer heat and for a barbecue.

Deep Ellum Dallas Blonde

Nancy Conaway, bartender at Republic Street Bar in Fort Worth, Texas

Deep Ellum Dallas Blonde. It’s easy drinking and has a quirky appeal. “The love runs deep ” with this beer, not to mention I’m considered a bad wife if we ever run out at the house!

Perfect Plain Sabine Rations

Nate Simmons, operations director at Perfect Plain Brewing Co. in Pensacola, Florida

Perfect Plain Brewing Co.’s Sabine Rations Kölsch, a crisp and flavorful brew. Perfect with something off the grill or a slice of watermelon.

Landshark Lager

Sammy Norris, bartender at EVO Entertainment in Schertz, Texas

Landshark was born in Margaritaville, and who wouldn’t enjoy a beer from Margaritaville? It has the island vibes without actually being at the islands and the perfect malt taste for summer.

Leinenkugel Summer Shandy

Eva Al-Gharaballi, bartender at Datz Restaurant Group in Tampa, Florida

Leinenkugel Summer Shandy is great to drink at your Fourth of July barbecue. A traditional shandy of a weiss beer mixed with lemonade offers sharp citrusy flavors to match any Fourth of July celebration.

Wynwood La Rubia

Melissa Reigle, beverage manager and head bartender at Byblos in Miami

In Miami, definitely try Wynwood Brewery’s La Rubia, a blonde ale that is light in body but not in flavor. You may also want to try De Las Americas Fruited Sour, a local collaboration between the Dogfish Head, Okcidenta, and Concrete Beach breweries. If you want light beer to cool you off all summer long, Concrete Beach Brewery’s La Clara is a great one to try.

Many breweries across the country offer pick up and/or delivery services. So channel your inner Lewis and Clark. Explore. Be bold. Support your local brewery.

Bad Dad The Sodfather

Payden Jones, bartender at Grains & Grill in Fairmount, Indiana

A great option is Bad Dad Brewing Co.’s summer Shandy, The Sodfather. This seasonal offering is perfect for hot summer days, offering a light and refreshing option. Let’s just say it’s a lemony, gingery offer you can’t refuse.

Montucky Cold Snacks

Dean Powers, restaurant and bar manager at Shore Lodge in McCall, Idaho

My go-to beer is Montucky Cold Snacks. A new kid on the block compared to the old guys like Rainier, Olympia, and Hamms. Cold Snacks are privately owned and give a percentage of profits back to the community and pay their staff for volunteer hours.