Have You Tried Liefmans This Summer Yet?!?!? Sooo Good!!

 

 


BEER

Fruity beers to beat the heat this summer 

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Jordan St. John

BY  ,SPECIAL TO QMI AGENCY

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Liefman's   
Liefman's beer. (Facebook/Leifman's)

One of the strengths of craft beer is that the brewers are becoming fearless in the pursuit of big flavours. There are huge high alcohol beers with gigantic hopping bills that do nearly completely away with established styles of brewing in the interest of experimentation and the expression of an idea.

Of course, that’s really only a strength until the humidex starts creeping towards 40 C and pigeons are spontaneously combusting upon takeoff.

I’ll give you an example. On Sunday, I found myself standing on a patio at the Rhino Summer Beer Festival in Toronto holding a glass of Flying Monkeys City and Colour Imperial Maple Wheat Ale. It’s a collaboration beer done with Dallas Green - of City and Colour - as part of their Treble Clef series which features Canadian musicians. It is 13% alcohol.

It contains more maple syrup than several Quebec townships. It would be an excellent beer to enjoy as an apres ski beverage around a roaring fire. You might consider buying some now and socking it away for that purpose.

However, on a patio in mid-July, it just doesn’t work. All of its strengths are made inappropriate by the punishing afternoon heat.

Ideally, for extreme heat, you want something light and flavourful that you don’t have to think about very much. Something that conveys all of its sensory information in the first sip and simply refreshes from that point on. Something that will stay cold for as long as possible while you’re drinking it.

Two new fruit beers, both light in alcohol and available across Canada, fulfill these requirements completely. In both cases, the bottles are slightly smaller than usual, at 275ml. This is not such a bad thing, since your beer will have less time to sit and warm up. Additionally, both of these beers are intended to be served over ice.

From Scotland’s Innis & Gunn, we have a new range called Melville’s, which specializes in flavoured beers. While Melville’s also offers a ginger beer, the highlight of the line is their Raspberry Craft Lager, which manages to balance between sweet and tart without having reduced the raspberry flavour to a one note pop.

From Liefman’s, we have Fruitesse. Deceptively complicated, Fruitesse spends 18 months on cherries before being blended with a number of fruit juices including raspberry, strawberry and elderberry. It’s highly carbonated; practically sparkling. It reminds me of nothing so much as summer camp fruit punch. It can be a touch sweet, but Liefman’s has thoughtfully provided options for customization on their website including a mint and lime version. I have had some success mixing it half and half with a pineapple-y IPA.

Of course, you could stay inside and sit directly in front of the air conditioner for the next month and drink whatever you want. I can’t advise that. The flaming pigeons are spectacular.

Jordan St. John writes about beer at saintjohnswort.ca. This week he’ll take you through a brewday at Toronto’s Beer Academy.