All-American craft beer
There was always something about cracking a Budweiser on the Fourth of July. Don’t deny it, it felt good to grab “the King of Beers” as you celebrated our country’s independence. You could basically hear the chorus, “I’m proud to be an American,” in the background the second you took a sip.
I made that last part up, of course, but obviously Budweiser was effective for years in marketing its beer as the most American beer you could drink. I’m not really sure the beer changed but the whole thing where it’s owned by a company based in Belgium now does take away some of that ’Merica feeling when you drink one.
Budweiser is crisp and refreshing — it tastes like a beer — and especially when you’re enjoying a Fourth of July cookout, I think we all just want a beer that tastes like a beer.
There are countless craft breweries cranking out all-American lighter brews to whet your whistle on the Fourth of July and really all summer long.
Might I also add that while the price of IPAs and other craft brews has continued to climb to unprecedented highs, lighter styles, like Pilsners and kolsch, have remained closer to what I would call reasonable, when it comes to price.
Lighter brews in the mold of Budweiser, if I’m allowed to say that, are also lower in calories and in alcohol, making them more sessionable than a double IPA. Plus, on a screaming hot summer day at the beach, beside the pool or in the backyard, light and refreshing is the name of the game.
Here are three New Hampshire craft brews you can proudly crack on the Fourth of July as you watch the fireworks or listen to “I’m Proud to be American.”
Dad Reflex American Lager by Portsmouth Brewery (Portsmouth)
This “is a macro-style American Lager brewed in honor of the superhero dads out there who deserve a cold one after a long day of saving lives without trying, or mowing the lawn,” according to the brewery website, and while I haven’t actually had this, that description spoke to me as a dad. I keep reminding my wife I’m basically a superhero but I do think the third-party validation here might have more of an impact. Cold and refreshing, that’s what beer is about on the Fourth of July.
Beer Hall Lager by 603 Brewery (Londonderry)
Get out the frosted glass; this features your classic straw-yellow pour. The brew is light, crisp and flavorful with some lightly sweet fruity notes, balanced by subtle breadiness. Picture yourself with a hot dog in one hand and this brew in the other — it’s a good picture, aside from the mustard on your cheek. This one goes down very, very easily.
Lady of the Lake New England Lager by Able Ebenezer Brewing Co. (Merrimack)
Celebrating “the 150th anniversary of the M/S Mount Washington, and the history of New Hampshire’s Lakes Region,” according to the brewery, this brew stands out for its simplicity. You just don’t have to think about it. It has a touch of citrus and fruit but it’s really all about being crisp, bright, refreshing and, well, pleasing. I think it would be best enjoyed lakeside, of course, and it would be a perfect accompaniment to a fireworks show.
What’s in My Fridge
Santilli American IPA by Night Shift Brewing Co. (Everett, Mass.)
The brewery’s flagship American IPA, Santilli combines bright citrus, including grapefruit, and pronounced notes of pine. Every time I have one I wonder why I don’t keep this in my fridge at all times. I still don’t have an answer to that question. It’s just a terrific all-around IPA that you can drink anytime. Particularly with the prevalence of hazy, juicy New England IPAs, this is a refreshing change of pace when you want the hops but would like to hold the orange juice. Cheers.
Featured photo. Lady of the Lake New England Lager by Able Ebenezer Brewing Company. Courtesy photo.