Citrusy Beers for Refreshing Spring Sipping

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Citrus naturally complements many beer styles—there's not much better than fresh-squeezed lime in a Mexican lager or fresh orange into a Belgian wheat. beer. And adding citrus to a beer while it’s being brewed isn’t unheard of either; traditional Belgian-style witbiers are made with orange peel. However, like all things West coast, local craft brewers are pushing the envelope, in this case by including lots of fruit and citrusy hops into their brews. We've rounded up a few options that may be the perfect replacement for your morning OJ.


Ballast Point’s Grapefruit Sculpin

This easy drinking citrus version of Ballast Point’s signature IPA is selling nearly as well as the well respected original. The new brew retains the same hop profile as before and the addition of grapefruit enhances the flavor and aroma. Keep it on hand and pray for hot weather.

Almanac’s Valencia Gold Belgian Strong Ale

This aromatic Belgian-style ale was brewed with fragrant orange blossom honey and fresh Valencia oranges from California’s Central Valley then dry-hopped with tangerine-scented Mandarina hops. Almanac Brewer and co-owner Jesse Friedman notes that the last remaining stash of this is on the shelves now. He also reports that a new batch of Farmer’s Reserve Citrus Barrel Aged Ale will be out in early Fall.

Ale Industry’s Golden State of Mind

This California Native Tea Beer is brewed with locally grown barley, oats, and wheat. Local and organic orange peel, coriander, and chamomile are added at the finish, to give the brew a smooth and citrusy bite.

Anderson Valley’s Blood Orange Gose

This tart wheat ale is soured with lactobacillus and, like a traditional gose, includes a touch of sea salt and coriander. However, unlike traditional versions of the gose style, Anderson Valley’s includes heroic additions of blood oranges during fermentation. This imparts additional tangy citrus notes to create a complex and sessionable ale.

Lost Coast’s Tangerine Wheat

Temperate and slightly sweet, this ale is nicely balanced by peppery wheat and a strong aroma of spicy tangerine.

Maui Brewing Company’s Lorenzini Double IPA  

This gorgeous American Double IPA was brewed with blood orange and Hawaiian citrus. The unique hop profile of Azacca, El Dorado, and Sorachi Ace add grapefruit to the aroma followed by a clean nip at the finish.  

Woods Beer Company’s Greyhound 

Owner/Brewer Jim Woods describes this Belgian-style Pale Ale as “A zesty barnyard brew with a funky Belgian yeast, golden as a hayfield, tart and bracing as a glass of grapefruit juice with a warming boozy finish.” He added the zest of a full case of Texas Grapefruit to the mix.

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