Finally, sunny day-drinking weather has returned. Let the people rejoice on Yampa. In honor of this fine weather, I have compiled a list of the best day-drinking beers. I included a variety of beers for all palates and price ranges.
Keep in mind that while day drinking, you want something light on both taste and ABV. Unless you want to pass out in the lawn at 3 p.m., pick something that’s no more than 6 percent alcohol.
I’ll start with the classic cheap beers. If you want to go for quantity over quality, I recommend Coors Light. The raw frosty taste is sure to leave you refreshed. Plus, I heard that if enough Colorado College students drink Coors Light at one time, then the Coors Bullet Train will come through. Stray away from the Coors Light summer special—the ‘Citrus Radler’—as it’s not very good.
If you want to go even lower on the totem pole of cheap beer, go for Genesee. Genesee is what my great-grandfather drank. It’s palatable and extremely cheap. You can get a 30 rack at Weber for just $15.99.
Now I’ll switch gears to some more sophisticated beers. Most craft breweries release some sort of spring or summer beer, which are great for the daytime.
New-Belgium Brewing in Fort Collins just released a new spring-summer seasonal called “Skinny Dip.” This tribute to nude swimming is a lager brewed with Colorado peaches. The flavor starts sweet, gets slightly sour from the peach, and then finishes smooth and clean. In this sense, it’s kind of like an everlasting Gobstopper from Willie Wonka & The Chocolate Factory. At 4.2 percent ABV, it won’t take a toll on you if you’re tying to last all day. I would definitely try this while it’s available.
Dry Dock Brewing Company is another Colorado-based brewery that makes a good fruit-infused lager. The Apricot Blonde Ale is delicious; it’s honestly one of my favorite beers. The brewery uses fresh apricots, leading to a full-bodied fruit compliment rather than an unpleasing artificial taste. It’s in the perfect ABV range for day drinking, coming in at 5.1 percent. Apricot Blonde is available at Weber and Coaltrain; look for the orange cans.
Texas-based Shiner Brewing Company makes an interesting spring seasonal called ‘Prickly Pear’. As you might expect, Prickly Pear is brewed with the distinctive pink fruit of a prickly pear cactus. This beer is refreshing and unique. I find it very hard to describe the flavor of a prickly pear cactus, so go ahead and try it for yourself. Shiner is cheaper than other craft beers, and it’s available in six-packs at Weber. Prickly Pear is only released every few years, so get it while it lasts.
As spring fades to summer, look for a whole host of great day-drinking beers to be released from your favorite breweries. Remember that if you’re going cheap, keep it simple. And never forget to drink extra water when you’re out drinking in the sun.