To preface this blog with a bona fide disclaimer: I am, in no way shape or form, a beer connoisseur (is that even what they’re called? – is there an actual word for it?) so let’s just get that out of the way. In fact, I know a hell of a lot more about wine (if we’re being honest though, still nowhere near conneseuir level) and I’d be way more comfortable talking about that. But that would also be way too easy and wayyyyy too long of a blog).
For you fellow self-proclaimed wine-os, sometimes you want to shake things up and have a beer. But, like, you’re not a “beer drinker” and “don’t even know what to get”. Totally get that. It’s simple, though–the secret is to reach for the coolest-looking packaging you can find, and bonus points for water-coloured mermaids or shimmering unicorns adorned with lightening bolts. Kidding (am I?)!
Obviously craft beer has been having minute (k at this point, a week), and the blank artist’s canvas that is beer can packaging these days is no different. If you understand my aesthetic preference at all, you’ll probably understand right away why I was drawn to try these ones. HOWEVER, they’re my latest faves for reasons other than the pretty packaging, I promise. (Even though they do entertain the F outta me.)
In no particular order, here we go.
1. 9 Mile – Golden Ticket
This is probably the easiest for me to call my ‘go-to brew’. Not only is it offered on tap at a bunch of spots in town, it’s perfect for the craft beer newbie that craves something familiar, and, according to the brewery, itself–”the craft beer veteran that wants some complex Belgian yeast character in a refreshing ale”. (Not 100% on what that means yet, not going to lie).
All I know is it’s quenching, a little hoppy, and so (almost too?) easy to drink.
2. Flying Monkey – Juicy Ass American IPA
SO juicy, this one!
I first tried this at my favourite pizza hangout here in Saskatoon, Thirteen Pies, and it couldn’t have paired better with my go-to Lost Boys pie. Actually, I’ve since learned that it goes quite well with absolutely any type of food. In any type of situation. Seriously, it’s a favourite for a reason.
It’s tropical and hoppy and if I were a beer I would probably be this one. The contact info on the packaging even includes the ‘Universe, Milky Way Galaxy, Planet Earth’. C’MON!
Although these are ranked in no particular order, this one is my actual new #1, if we’re being honest. It’s just SO CRISP, ya know? It’s slightly less hoppy than the Flying Monkey and a tad fruitier (but NOT in a overly sweet way). It’s a white pale ale too, but a little higher on the alcohol percentage scale.
4. Kona Big Wave Golden Ale
Straight from the Big Island of Hawaii! The first time I tried this one was actually in Hawaii, which is probably one of the main reasons for my soft spot for it. Through the citrus hops, I can pretty much feel that island sun on my face. This beer tastes like vacation. You know how it is.
I’ve seen this one around a lot, so I’m thinking it’s not overly hard to find. All nostalgia aside, this is an easy-to-drink beer that usually hits the spot, although it’s a tad on the heavier side and not as light as some of my other suggestions.
(Please note: the packaging has no way at all influenced my decision, but the fact it says “Liquid Aloha” on the front does not hurt. Cuuuute.)
4/5 would recommend.
At this point, I think it’s apparent I’m into pale beers right now (although I don’t discriminate and love all alcoholic beverages equally. Jk that sounds problematic), and trust me, this one is tried and true. A self-proclaimed ‘no-frills beer with a clean finish’, Two Wolves’ Arctic Blonde Ale is a solid pick if you’re not typically into beer or just starting out. Think of it as the training wheels for beer…?
What are your favourite beers? Leave a comment below. Move over vino, let’s get into a full on beer phase, shall we?