4 Go-To Beer Styles for Spring

4 Go-To Beer Styles for Spring

Surrounded by the crowd of summer’s wheat beers, fall’s Oktoberfests, and winter’s porters, spring fades into the background. It’s a month of transition, a month of waiting for winter to clear and summer to set in, but spring shouldn’t be overlooked. Styles harmoniously paired with this wallflower season are light on the stomach, light in alcoholic content, are sharp and crisp in finishing effect, making them suited for any spring festival, picnic, or St. Patrick’s Day celebration.

Pilsner

Pilsner beer had humble beginnings in the Czech Republic where Josef Groll, a Bavarian brewer employed by a Bohemian brewery, crafted a concoction of Saaz hops, Bavarian bottom-fermenting lager yeasts, and pale malts in 1842. In its original Czech form, this pale lager is earthy in flavor, high in foaminess, and floral in scent.

While categorized as a lager, the usage Saaz hops, which are noble hops with distinctive herbal flavors, define pilsner beer. Saaz hops infuse pilsners with a flowery aroma and a spicy bite, all leading to a refreshingly clean finish. The added kick makes pilsners perfect for mid-spring, right when the weather begins to warm.

Fruit Beers

If the rain showers and blooming flowers weren’t any indication spring’s arrived, you’ll definitely know when fruit beers hit the shelves. Mainly released in spring, fruit beer saw its modern emergence in Belgium where the Belgians brewed the first cherry lambics and krieks in the 1930s. Beer drinkers recognize fruit beers for their fruity aroma and addition of flavors like peach, cherry, and raspberry.

The brewing process incorporates fresh fruit, purée, or extracts which give these brews their hint of sweetness and tartness that plays off the base beer. Flavor, aroma, and finish of fruit beers are dependent on the base beer’s style although wheat, sour, and IPAs are some of the more popular styles combined with fruit. Double down on spring by trying a fruited pilsner!

Bock

_DSC3060.jpg

You can’t discuss spring beer styles without mentioning a traditional favorite, bock beer. This strong and smooth lager originated in Einbeck, Germany, and is notorious for bottom-fermenting and extensive lagering, resulting in an uninhibited malt taste. Bock beers are usually dark amber to brown in color with moderate carbonation. The full mouthfeel of bock beer allows for easy sipping during any May afternoon.

There are also various substyles of traditional bock like maibock and doppelbock. Maibock or “May bock” is light and sweet with minimal hop flavor. Doppelbock or “double bock” is slightly stronger than traditional bock, meaning every sip will hold a chocolatey, toasted edge. While bock, maibock, and doppelbock are styles that tend to share the spring limelight, substyles like weizenbock and einsbock aren’t to be forgotten either. Bock it up!

Stout

_DSC3055.jpg

At first, the term “stout” was used to categorize strong beers, but as darker beers gained more attention in Ireland, stout became its own smooth, dark, and roasted style. Now stout, specifically dry stout, holds the title of Irish icon mostly due to the popularity of Guinness, the most famous brewing family in Ireland. With representative ties to Ireland, this style can’t be passed up on St. Patrick’s Day.

Stouts possess a harmonious roundness, dry finish, and a touch of roasted flavor. The roasted twist derives from the use of roasted barely, an unmalted barleycorn. This ingredient gives stout its signature expresso bitterness, deep color, and opaque appearance.

Beer Myths Debunked

Beer Myths Debunked

We are living at the apex of beer. According to the Brewers Association, as of 2017 we have over 6000 craft brewers operating in the U.S. While this provides an abundance of choices for drinking, it can also create some confusion in navigating all the taps we have to choose from. To do so, we’d like to dispel some of the myths surrounding beer and help you fully enjoy this amazing bounty.

The Perfect Pour

The Perfect Pour

Pouring beer is an art. How you put that beer in your glass can change in not-so-subtle ways how your beer tastes, smells and feels. Doing it right allows the flavors of the beer to fully emerge. For the best drinking experience it is essential that you have the right beer poured right.

What four primary ingredients are used to make beer?

What four primary ingredients are used to make beer?

Though used in varying proportions depending on the style being made, ALL beer is made from grainhopsyeast, and water. That’s it! In the hands of a skilled brew master these four simple ingredients can be transformed into a unique work of brewing art. There are hundreds of beer styles, thousands of breweries and tens of thousands of unique beers – all generated from these simple ingredients. The ever increasing number of new brewers are pushing beer creativity to new heights. With the addition of other ingredients – like spices or fruits – the flavor combinations are endless. As brewers continue to innovate, the future, for beer drinkers, is very good.

How Many Beer Styles Are There?

How Many Beer Styles Are There?

This is a great question. Understanding the answer will go a long way in helping you find the beer you love most, making it easier to navigate the ever expanding choices at the tap. Including all the major beer styles and all of their sub-styles, there are believed to be over 100 different beer styles in the world.

Ale vs Lager - What's the Difference? 

Ale vs Lager - What's the Difference? 

As a beer lover, this is the best of times to be alive - with local breweries opening everywhere and so much great craft beer available. However, in the face of this abundance, it would be easy to feel overwhelmed by the choices: pilsners, IPAs, bocks, browns, stouts, porters and so on.

Each of these styles are uniquely wonderful, but it can be overwhelming to understand them all. So, let’s take a step back for a moment…

Your Beer Education Begins

Your Beer Education Begins

Don’t worry, Craft Brew U is school as you wish it would have been. Here, we all major in beer! There are no tests, but we will have homework, which will consist of drinking beer (to better understand what we have learned).

What is Craft Beer?

What is Craft Beer?

Every year, numerous craft breweries go on tap, giving beer lovers more choices than ever (a good thing in our opinion). However, with all the talk of craft beer one must ask: What is craft beer?

Embrace Independence with us

Embrace Independence with us

On your next visit to our tap room, you'll notice an emblem of a large flag with 13 hops positioned in a circle with the slogan, “Embrace Independence.” Our team receives many inquiries on “what does it mean?” or “what are you embracing independence from?”

Don't Fear Dark Beer

Don't Fear Dark Beer

Welcome to Craft Brew U, our blog on the art of craft beer. Every week we’ll take a look at interesting beer styles, discuss key ingredients, answer common questions about beer and offer insights to help you fully enjoy the beer revolution.

 

Welcome to Craft Brew U

Welcome to Craft Brew U

RATR_CRAFT_BREW_U.jpg

Craft Brew U is the university of Red Arrow Tap Room. Our mission is to educate on craft beer and provide content that makes craft beer approachable and fun. Craft Brew U delivers classroom sessions at our tap room and also provides online educational content.

Interested in a private beer class? Click here to learn more.

Pour your own, sit back and drink knowledge. Embrace independence with us!

Embrace Independence,

Joseph B. Tota, CEO, Red Arrow Tap Room

24297602_10155469804891917_316287569560154621_o.jpg