The age of the domestic beer monopoly in the United States shrinks with each passing day. The beer industry around the world dominates the alcoholic beverage industry, as consumers drink 3,500 bottles of beer for every one glass of wine – that makes 8,000 times more beer consumed by the liter. Annually, consumers worldwide drink 189 billion liters of beer, but only 24 million liters of wine. While drinking habits may peak during certain times of the year such as holidays, the consumption of beverages remains fairly consistent and rarely makes huge changes in consumption from one day to the next. The changing seasons do have a great effect on the types and styles of beers consumed, as more people start to prefer full-bodied beers. While fall should tune the weather down a bit, Southern California remains hot as ever. Tons of pumpkin beers start to surface around this time, and perhaps the people have gotten tired of seeing pumpkin beers everywhere. However, some breweries continue to brew new pumpkin beers, reimagining how we will perceive these fall-style beers. If you still have room for pumpkin beer in your system, read on for five fall beers that I recommend trying this season, all of which you can find at your local bottle shop throughout Southern California.
5. Rogue Ales & Spirits‘ Honey Kolsch
Most businesses start off specializing in one or a few products. During the initial years, the business focuses on getting their products done right while growing the business. Over time, once the business grows larger, that business may consider expanding their product line. If not, they can at least find other ways to expand, such as how In-N-Out keeps adding stores without expanding their product selection. For other businesses, once you have maximized return on your current products, the time comes to start looking into what else to sell, and Rogue has done just just by turning into Rogue Ales & Spirits. No longer just a brewery, Rogue now also carries their own line of spirits. Despite this addition, Rogue still churns out lots of beer, including some of their odd, eccentric brews. For those less inclined to try their odd brews, you can stick with something more familiar, such as their Honey Kolsch. At just 5.0% abv, this German style ale pours a beautiful copper color with rolling sweet honey aromas using Rogue farms hopyard honey and wildflower honey harvested from bees right at Rogue farms. While smooth and refreshing for warmer days, the Kolsch style fits right in with autumn for its defined body. The Honey Kolsch also fits right in with any Oktoberfest party, so enjoy one with some sausages this season.
4. Evil Twin Brewing‘s “Ryan And The Gosling” All-Brett Pale Ale
Sometimes people need to take a step back and understand that famous people have human lives and emotions too. We cannot treat such people as objects, discounting them as some random thing that we can cast aside when we do not feel like dealing with it anymore. As such, we remember such certain famous figures in mysterious ways, although I have no idea why showing one’s genitalia pays homage for remembering someone. Anyways, to idolize someone famous, sometimes an item gets dedicated to that person, something that Evil Twin Brewing does. Originating in Denmark, Evil Twin boasts a huge portfolio of brews, a handful of which bear the face of someone significant. However, none appear as significant as the so-called Ryan And The Gosling. This 4% all-brett pale ale falls under multiple styles, from pale ale to saison to farmhouse ale and more. It pours hazy golden with aromas of yeast and sweet orange. The brew has a bready flavor with hints of orange zest that finishes slightly bitter. The low abv and intense flavors makes this the perfect beverage to share with a loved one, or someone you simply admire.
3. Sound Brewery‘s Mortal Kombat X beers
Intellectual property should remain in its medium. This holds largely true for movies and video games. Historically, movies based on video games have never done well, and video games based on movies have never done well. When one industry tries to cross over into another, it tends to end tragically. In the case of Sound Brewery, they managed to get this done right. Washington’s Sound Brewery actually got the chance to brew a limited edition series of beers to tie in with the video game Mortal Kombat X. This series contains three imperial brews that pair a style to one of the game’s characters: Raiden has a saison, Scorpion has a stout, and Sub-Zero has an IPA. The Scorpion Imperial Stout sits at 8.5% abv and represents heat for Scorpion’s Hellfire abilities. It contains southwest chilies as well as Madagascar vanilla for a cooling and sweet element. The Sub-Zero Imperial IPA also sits at 8.5% abv and represents the cold for Sub-Zero’s cryogenic abilities. It represents a balance of hops and malt, and you can control how much of each you can taste based on the temperature that you drink the brew at. I did not get a chance to taste the Raiden Imperial Saison, but I strongly suggest you try all three from your local bottle shop.
2. Saranac Brewery‘s Pumpkin Ale Growler
To ring in the new season, a new harvest appears right before our eyes. Fall represents a change in local produce, notably in fruits and vegetables. Some key produce includes yams, sweet potatoes, eggplants, corn, and pumpkins. Pumpkin tends to take the most hype out of anything edible, from pumpkin spice lattés to pumpkin pies to pumpkin ravioli to pumpkin beers. Pumpkin beers tend to get a lot of hate in the recent years with people trying to bash it down as a gimmick style. However, when brewed right, pumpkin beers taste phenomenal, something that Saranac Brewery has done right. Out of New York comes Saranac, a brewery that has garnered quite a bit of popularity over on the east coast. Saranac brews many different styles of beers, including their fall seasonal Pumpkin Ale that comes in a 32oz growler jug. This hearty 5.3% abv ale comes with cinnamon, allspice, cloves, and vanilla. It pours boldly with a deep color profile that looks good going down. This Pumpkin Ale pairs well with traditional autumn foods such as poultry and pastries.
1. Alaskan Brewing‘s Perseverance 30th Anniversary Russian Imperial Stout
When a business has remained in the industry for decades, it stands as a testament to the fortitude of that business to stick with it for that long, especially a business that remains a local mom & pop business. Truly, to hold onto a business for that long represents the American Dream. An aspiring entrepreneur dreamed of a business long ago, and to this day can rightfully claim the legacy of having raised something from the ground up. Alaskan Brewing has remained in the industry for over three decades with sheer determination and understanding of the market. Sometimes a local legacy proves your worth, and Alaskan Brewing has built a legacy on their own. It all culminates with their 30th anniversary ale, Perseverance Russian Imperial Stout. At only 9.0% abv, this approachable Russian Imperial Stout comes with Alaskan birch syrup to lend a dark yet slightly tart flavor to the malts, while wildflower honey adds sweetness and a floral component. Balanced exquisitely, this brew contains a bold profile without the excess alcohol. Celebrate this season with Perseverance and taste perfection.