Summer isn’t quite here yet, but that’s not stopping Bay Area breweries from kicking out summer quenchers. This week’s highlights include new bottles and canned releases, a gluten-free beer, and a multitude of fresh tap offerings across the region.
Gilman Brewing – The Berkeley brewery is debuting their first gluten free beer on tap: Le Petit Hibou (“the tiny owl”). A red rice golden ale, this beer is a table beer version of their Belgian golden with a Japanese flavoring twist. At 3.7 percent alcohol, this beer displays a crisp malt backbone with flavors of stone fruit and berry from the Belgian and sake yeasts.
Barebottle Brewing – The Bernal Heights neighborhood brewery is releasing their Muir Woods IPA in bottles this Wednesday. Winner of their Muir Woods contest, this 6.2 percent alcohol release is described as being like “a citrus-laced pine cone, bursting with notes of pine needles and oranges.” The rye malt backbone of the beer contributes some spiciness that adds to the refreshing and layered texture of the beer.
Black Hammer Brewing – Conjuring the most tropical of summer vacations, We’re With Paris is a New England IPA released by the SoMa-based brewery in San Francisco. Flavors of mango, papaya, fresh squeezed lime and some slight bitterness shine through the dry hopped murkiness of Motueka and Citra. The beer comes out at 7.8 percent alcohol and 30 IBU.
Brasserie St. James – Amongst the new IPAs from San Francisco this week, the Reno brewery’s SF outpost is debuting an unfiltered German-style pilsner called Zwickel Pils. This 4.9 percent alcohol traditional style is brewed with saphir hops and all German malt, boasting a slight fruity aroma with some tangerine and juicy pear tones, with a backbone of bready malt that kicks through crisp texture with quenching bitterness.
Alpha Acid – Juicy and refreshing, the Belmont brewery released a North East style IPA called Fidget Spinner. At 6.5 percent alcohol with Nelson, Wakatu and Motueka hops, it’s the perfect summertime quencher.
Sonoma Springs Brewing Company – Up in the North Bay, Conan’s Haze is one of the new releases from Sonoma Springs. Named after the Vermont ale yeast strain used to brew this beer, it uses Mosaic and Simcoe hops with a backbone of Pilsen malt, flaked oats and barley. Favors of tangerine, grapefruit, passion fruit, lychee flavors and a refreshing hop topping make this Northeast IPA a must try.