There’s no better time than a warm summer night to kick back with an ice-cold beer. Whether you’re relaxing on your backyard patio or one at your favorite brewery or restaurant, a warm summer night is the perfect setting to enjoy few beers with some friends.
Since you’re reading this, you’re most likely a Michigan resident, and even more likely, one of the southeast Michigan area. There are countless breweries in the state of Michigan, and these days, ones that are outside of Metro Detroit are shipped into local grocers and eateries, so you just may find your favorite beer from the west side of the state without having to travel there.
Here are a few of Michigan’s greatest summer craft beer offerings, ready for you to sample in the coming months:
Arbor Brewing Company, 114 E. Washington St., Ann Arbor (brewpub), 720 Norris St., Ypsilanti (microbrewery)
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- Strawberry Blonde is a medium-bodied beer with citrus, spice and fruit flavors. The strawberry ale is available through the end of August, and you’ll find it anywhere from the ABC Microbrewery and Brewpub to grocery store shelves in the form of a six-pack.
- While the Anahata Chakra Honey Lavender Ale is a specialty, not seasonal beer, it’s currently available on draft at the Brewpub. I had the pleasure of trying it last weekend, and with notes of honey and fresh lavender, it was reminiscent of Blackrocks’ Honey Lav.
Arcadia Ales, 701 E. Michigan Ave., Kalamazoo
- Whitsun is a refreshing wheat beer with notes of Michigan honey, orange peel and coriander. If you purchase a six-pack for enjoying on the patio at home, try pairing it with a dinner of grilled whitefish, citrus salad or sushi.
Atwater Brewery, 237 Joseph Campau, Detroit,
- Summer Time Ale is an American wheat-style spice beer, with a citrusy lemon finish.
- Atwater’s Summer Party pack is great if you’re hosting a barbecue—the 12 pack includes a variety of beers, including Purple Gang Pilsner, Summer Time Ale, Traverse City Cherry Wheat and Dirty Blonde.
Bell’s Brewery, 8938 Krum Ave., Galesburg
- Oberon is Bell’s quintessential summer release, and the citrusy wheat ale with notes of orange is enhanced even further with a slice of orange in your glass. It is available by on draft, by the can and in a mini-keg, if you’re really thirsty.
Jolly Pumpkin, locations in Ann Arbor and Detroit
- Luciernaga, a Belgian-style spring saison pale ale, contains spicy notes of coriander, and is available beginning in June.
- Weizen Bam, a golden colored sour wheat ale, has notes of lemon and banana. It will be available beginning in July.
Motor City Brewing Works, 470 W. Canfield, Detroit
- Summer Brew is a wheat beer with a trace of citrus, and is deep orange in color. It’s available now through the end of September, and you’ll find it bottled in six-packs and 24 packs.
New Holland Brewing, 66 E. 8th St., Holland
- White Hatter is a white pale ale that combines the notes of a Belgian white with the hoppy citrusness you’d find in an IPA. If you’re drinking it with a meal, try pairing it with fish or grilled chicken.
Short’s Brewing Company, 121 Bridge St., Bellaire
- This year’s Summer Variety Pack includes Deacon Blues (an extra pale ale), Twist of Cain (a black lager with notes of molasses and chocolate), Yosemite Scooter (an American pale ale) and Bucktricity Kills (a pale yellow Berliner Weisse). It is available beginning this month.
- Nicie Spicie, an American wheat ale, is brewed with citrus zest, coriander and a peppercorn trio blend. It’s more than refreshing, and is available through August.
- Several specialty releases that fall during the summer months include: Alien Einstein (June), Hopstache (June), India Spruce Pilsner (July), Strawberry Short’s Cake (July), Cerveza de Julie (August) and Sticky Icky Icky (August).
There are plenty of other Michigan breweries you can enjoy in Metro Detroit throughout the summer, without filling up your gas tank. Don’t miss out on other breweries like Dark Horse Brewing Co. of Marshall, Founders Brewing Co. of Grand Rapids, Kuhnhenn Brewing Co. of Warren or Liberty Street Brewing Company of Plymouth.
Cheers to summer in the D!