The first day of summer 2020 just passed. Flew right by; we hardly noticed it. The season that we’re trained as kids to look forward to all year is finally here. Next, come the Dog Days, then the hot August nights, and then it’s over. Better grab a cocktail or a beer (or a cocktail made with beer!) while you can.
Even if summer 2020 is significantly different than in years past, you deserve to bask in it a little. And these hazy days are perfect for sipping a hazy beer. A cloudy, refreshing brew that just seems to fit late-June like a glove.
Hazy beers aren’t limited to just New England-style IPAs in all of their unfiltered majesty, either. There are also hazy wheat beers, sour beers, pilsners, and even farmhouse ales. Since we’re avowed fans of the style, and plan on spending the summer drinking of them as possible, we figured that we should get picks from the pros. So we asked a handful of bartenders to tell us their go-to hazy beers for summer 2020.
Warpigs Foggy Geezer
Hayden Miller, head bartender at Bodega Taqueria y Tequila in Miami
Warpigs makes Foggy Geezer hazy IPA and it doesn’t need to be summer to drink this awesome beer from a rad collaboration between Three Floyd’s and Mikkeller. No mistaking it for any other style. It has a fruity flavor, matched with a clean body and nice hop finish.
Dry Dock Sour Apricot
Michael Webster, tasting room manager at Lone Tree Brewing Company in Lone Tree, Colorado
Dry Dock Brewing Company — Sour Apricot. One of the first sour beers I ever had in a can. The Apricot flavor and sour notes blend together perfectly for a beer that I can drink all summer long (sour beers are one of my favorite beer styles).
Mikkeller Windy Hill
Sondre Kasin, principal bartender at Cote in New York City
For more flavor, hops, and character Mikkeller Windy Hill Hazy IPA is a really good choice. I can be tricky to find, however, look online and it should be there. A fresh, tropical, and citrus-driven beer that has a lot of character. Summer for me is tropical fruit and this is definitely that!
Perfect Plain Holy Spin
Nate Simmons, operations director at Perfect Plain Brewing Co. in Pensacola, Florida
Perfect Plain Brewing Co.’s Holy Spin. It has bright tropical notes and a velvety mouthfeel. It’s crushable at 7 percent abv, so it will definitely sneak up on you.
Tree House Julius
Bill Myers, bartender at Kimpton Brice Hotel in Savannah, Georgia
When I think of hazy beer, I think of New England Style IPAs… and if we’re talking about NEIPAs, we have to mention Trillium and Tree House breweries. I can’t wait to start traveling again so I can go to the Boston area specifically to go to these breweries. If you’re not traveling yet, I suggest that you find some friends that live in that area, and request that they ship you some Trillium Scaled or Tree House Julius.
Cigar City Florida Cracker
Jay Culham, beverage manager at Bonsai at Hilton Pensacola Beach in Pensacola, Florida
Cigar City Brewing Florida Cracker – it has nice orange and lime notes that keep you going back for more during the Florida summer heat. It’s also made here in Tampa, Florida.
Eva Al-Gharaballi, bartender for the Datz Restaurant Group in Tampa, Florida
Allagash White from Allagash Brewing Company in Maine is a delicious hazy beer for the summer. A traditional Belgian haze that is complex and refreshing. I visited Portland, Maine last summer and I had one of these tasty beers everywhere we went.
Upland Juiced in Time
Sarah Fackler, bartender and manager at Upland Brewing Co. in Bloomington, Indiana
Upland Juiced in Time clocks in at 6.5 percent abv, absolutely dripping with tropical fruit flavors. This one is definitely a favorite amongst my patrons. The hazies have really taken over summer beer. I get requests for these far more than I do for sessions or saisons. Quite the change over the past ten years.
North Coast Scrimshaw
Piero Procida, bartender at The London West Hollywood in Los Angeles
One we have on tap in all our bars at the hotel is Scrimshaw Pilsner. I fell in love with this beer during a tasting and immediately knew it was going on my menu. Scrimshaw is a North Coast California Pilsner that is simply amazing. It is our fastest and most popular beer especially during the summer and for good reason. Scrimshaw is incredibly refreshing, light, and, of course, very flavorful. This is truly a craft beer that has taken off in so many ways and has not fallen into the trap of watered-down mass-produced beer, as so many popular beers tend to do over time.
I took this beer off once on my menu for some or other reason and the immediate cries from our guests made me realize to never do that again, at least for a while! It’s a beer you can drink all summer without trying anything else and its crisp refreshing flavor make it an easy drink in the heat.
Resident Brewing Chasing Samba Hazy IPA
Dean Powers, restaurant and bar manager at Shore Lodge and Whitetail Club in McCall, Idaho
If I could, I’d drink Chasing Samba Hazy IPA from Resident brewing in San Diego. A single hop beer with mosaic drinks clean and fresh all summer.