Singing the Summertime Blues
A Review of Hop Sun by Southern Tier Brewing Co.
Posted on 4/29/2011 by Chops
                   
Bad
Southern Tier Brewery describes Hop Sun with the following statement: ''give it a long whiff and you'll realize that this isn't your average wheatbeer.'' Very true, but in a bad way. You know why? Because it smells like a cheap pilsner. Not exactly my definition of thinking outside of the wheaties box.

First of all, the term ''hop'' should be nowhere near summertime wheats. The whole point of summer wheat beers (i.e. hefeweizens and the like) is to remove themselves from the hefty taste load of the working man's beer. When you order a summer wheat, you expect something that's light, refreshing and somewhat tropical. You want to be reminded of summer things like beaches, fruits, sea breezes, etc. The added citrus from an orange or lime is supposed to balance the sweetness to make them very smooth and refreshing brews.

This beer just comes across as a bland lager. When you open the beer and give it that first whiff, it reminds you of a mass produced pilsner. No character whatsoever, just rusty tap water. It looks equally as bad when you pour it into a glass. It looks like a cheap lager. There's absolutely no golden haze that gives summer wheats their trademark look.

Unfortunately, it tastes like a crappy lager too. The added citrus from the orange doesn't help at all, just tastes like orange flavored crappy lager. At it's very best, which is about halfway through the beer when the citrus had time to blend, it tasted like a really weak hefeweizen. Course, that flavor doesn't carry over into the nasty aftertaste of a crappy lager. It's that unpleasant lingering bitterness of sub par beer.

In all honesty, I have no idea why Southern Tier is calling Hop Sun a summer ale. It tastes like a boring baseline lager and nothing more. There's very little redeemable about this beer in my opinion. Granted, Hop Sun is a bit better than the piss water domestics, but that's not exactly a difficult achievement.

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Hop Sun by Southern Tier Brewing Co.
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