10 Favorite Local Craft Beers for Poolside Drinking

If you’re a regular drinker of craft brews, you may have noticed some of your favorite beers being packaged in a cans. And judging by the number of Arizona beers now available in aluminum, it would seem the trend for canning beer is making a comeback in Arizona, too. With temperatures rising, we think this is a great thing. More canned beers means more poolside drinking options. 

Here are 10 of our favorite locally made craft brews, perfect for poolside drinking: 

Biltmore Blonde (Phoenix Ale Brewery)

Style: Golden Ale

ABV: 5 percent

This is a brew that will impress even your wine-drinking friends by aiming to please even the most complex of palates. Unpasteurized and unfiltered, this blond ale entertains with crisp, grapefruit-y appeal.

Sunbru (Four Peaks Brewing Company)

Style: German Kolsch Ale

ABV: 5.1 percent

Looking for old school tradition? This brew has you covered. This Kolsch-style ale hits firmly with wheat and barley flavors up front and a smooth, clean finish. Super-refreshing, a definite go-to on a hot day.

Orange Peel IPA (Phoenix Ale Brewery)

Style: West Coast India Pale Ale

ABV: 6.4 percent

This brew lives up to the easy-drinking reputation of a West Coast-style IPA. It starts with hints of sweet citrus, and while you won't get big orange-y flavors from the addition of orange peel, the fruity element does tone down the bite or bitterness associated with IPAs. 

Knotty Pine (Lumberyard Brewing Company)

Style: Pale Ale

ABV: 5.4 percent

If piney, hop-forward IPAs are your style, then look no further. Taste-wise, this beer qualifies as a session IPA with intense hoppy flavors that send your tastebuds on a pine-filled adventure. The crisp, clean finish further exemplifies the quality craftsmanship of this brew. 

Big Blue Van (College Street Brewhouse & Pub)

Style: American Pale Wheat Ale

ABV: 5.4 percent

This brew is as fun and colored with flavor as a bowl of Fruity Pebbles. It begins with aromas of cotton candy, followed by a blast of blueberry and finishes with a smooth, sweet hint of vanilla to balance everything out. Even if fruity beers aren't your thing, this beer is worth a try. 

Mr. Pineapple (San Tan Brewing Company)

Style: American Pale Wheat Ale

ABV: 5.0 percent

Don't be fooled by the cloudy pour of this ale; it's nothing but sunshine. Its light, fruity tones pair perfectly with a dip in the pool. Add citrus or a slice of pineapple if you prefer and Mr. Pineapple is a great poolside companion.

Barrio Blonde Ale (Barrio Brewing Company)

Style: American Blonde Ale

ABV: 4.53 percent

This beer is just begging Arizona summers to give it their best shot. The flavors are clean and bright, starting with a little spice up front, followed by an unexpected sweetness that dances around your palate. 

Orange Blossom (Papago Brewing Company)

Style: American Wheat Ale

ABV: 5 percent

This well-loved local brew is like a drinkable dessert. As the flavor of mandarin oranges hits your mouth, a sweet splash of vanilla follows up to smooth everything over. The effervescent texture is a nice alternative to the standard cloudy pour of a wheat ale, making this brew crisp and refreshing. 

Scottsdale Blonde (Huss Brewing Company)

Style: German Kolsch Ale

ABV: 4.7 percent

A perfect day drinker, this beer gets your attention right from the start with a hit of spice up front. It quickly balances out with a light, crisp sweetness and finishes clean. 

Achocolypse (Prescott Brewing Company)

Style: American Porter

ABV: 6.0 percent

We know what you're thinking, what is a porter doing on this poolside list? But take our word for it, this one's worth trying. The sweet chocolate aroma is the first indication of the smooth, creamy deliciousness of this brew. Delivering an impressive balance of sweet and smooth, it hits your mouth like a melted chocolate bar. Savor this one straight up or grab some ice cream for a real treat.

KEEP PHOENIX NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Sara Palmer is a local improviser, writer, teacher, and storyteller. You can commonly find her exploring the surrounding wilderness areas of Phoenix.
Contact: Sara Palmer