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Beer of the Week: Alaskan Summer

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Alaskan Summer

Alaskan beer is actually from Alaska. It's not some marketing name or gimmick designed to make you think of a drink that's cold and frosty. The brewery, opened in the late 1980s by beer lovers Marci and Geoff Larson, was the first in Juneau since Prohibition, according to the website. Over the years, it has developed a lengthy lineup of brews, including a kolsch-style ale called Summer that is a real charmer, especially when you get it iced down. Kolsch ales are made in the style of a German brew noted for its harmony of flavors in a light style that's refreshing in the heat — and Alaskan certainly gets that down pat.

Alaskan Summer

Pop the cap on a bottle, pour it into a pint glass and you notice a golden ale that shimmers in the light. The head is decent, about 1 to 2 fingers, but it dissipates fairly quickly into a lacy ring around the edge. Aromas of apple, caramel, hoppy flowers and malt are all swirling about together, none more dominant than any other. That carries over into the flavor, which is pleasantly bitter and sweet with all of those aromas carrying over to the palate. What you'll notice most is how clean it all, from the fine fizz on the tongue to the finish. That makes it so easy to have a couple. When pairing this with food, remember to keep it light. Spicy Mexican food would likely overpower it, but grilled sausages or bratwurst, a four-cheese pizza or a cold Italian sub would all be great. So, if you can't get to Alaska this summer to chill off, just grab an Alaskan Summer. It'll take the edge off the heat, at least for a while. I found it at H-E-B for $1.49 a bottle.
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