As the weather turns from warm to hot, local brewers — and breweries from out of state — are releasing new beers to stores and bars around Louisiana, crafted to refresh beer lovers on the hottest days of summer.
Abita Brewing Company on the Northshore is rolling out a new Harvest lineup. Replacing Lemon Wheat is Blueberry Wheat, because of its popularity in the brewery's taproom. Made with fresh Louisiana blueberry juice, the light wheat imparts lots of flavor without being heavy on the palate.
Abita's other summer seasonal, Seersucker Summer Pils, also has been released. "Our water is perfect for brewing pilsners," says Abita head brewer Mark Wilson. "It's great for the Louisiana summer because it is on the lighter side with regards to color and (alcohol by volume), but still full of flavor from the malt and traditional German hops."
• Covington Brewhouse released its summer seasonal, Rock & Roll Summer Farmhouse Ale, for the second year. Head brewer Brian "Bruiser" Broussard says this year's version is a blend of two batches of beer, one made with French saison yeast and one made with Belgian yeast that are combined right before bottling. At 5.5 percent alcohol by volume (ABV), this beer is well-suited for quenching thirst in the summer heat.
• Second Line Brewing in Mid-City released its 22-ounce bottles of the brewery's latest flagship beer, Route 47 Red IPA, to retailers last week. This is the first bottled beer to come from the brewery, which recently tapped Gar Hatcher, formerly with Bayou Teche Brewing, as head brewer at Second Line.
• Social and traditional media have been abuzz with news that the country's oldest operating brewery, Yuengling Brewery, will send its beers to Louisiana in the near future. While details are sketchy — such as where in Louisiana it will be distributed, who will distribute it and which beer will be distributed — the news has excited many local beer drinkers.