Best Craft Beer Cans for the Cooler in the Dog Days of Summer
Alchemist Heady Topper
Once you've enjoyed a can of Torpedo, you've primed the palate for something with significantly more kick. Though it calls Waterbury, Vt., home, Alchemist has no problem producing a 16-ounce can of West Coast Style 8% ABV double IPA. Just how bitter is this beer? Beer bitterness is measured in International Bitterness Units that usually top out at 100. Alchemist claims 120 IBUs for Heady Topper. Good luck unpuckering.
Big Sky Brewing Company Moose Drool
As great as a citrusy IPA can be on a warm summer's day, a mild brown ale can be just as inviting. Moose Drool out of Missoula, Mont., has a little more kick than a light lager at 5.2% ABV, but is so malty, caramel flavored and lightly carbonated that having more than one isn't out of the question. Considering this is one of the best brown ales made in the U.S. and cans of brown ale are still fairly scarce, it's worth considering if you come across it in your area.
Half Acre Daisy Cutter
Do you really like hoppy pale ales but also like walking around and conducting cogent conversations an hour after having a couple? An American Pale Ale and its lower alcohol content is your answer, and few as fruity and pungent as Daisy Cutter are available in cans. Don't be intimidated by the tall, 16-ounce package: Daisy Cutter goes down easy, with very little kick. Folks in the Chicagoland area with easy access to these silver beauties should consider themselves fortunate to enjoy what is possibly the perfect summer can of beer.
Sixpoint Sweet Action
It's not easy to pick a favorite from Brooklyn-based Sixpoint's family of canned brews, but this red, hoppy cream ale is just about the best this brewery has to offer. Cream ale can conjure a lot of bad memories if your last taste of it came from a cheap case of cans found at the cash and carry, but Sweet Action tastes more like a hoppy pale ale with the subtlety of a low-alcohol Belgian farmhouse beer. At 5.2% ABV, 16-ounce cans of Sweet Action are well suited to summer sipping.