Take a Walk on the Light Side 

It's time to raise a beer to summer

The last few weeks of winter may have been warmer than the first few days of spring, but I'm already looking ahead to summer. This time around it's a trio of easy drinking, oh-so-refreshing, lighter styled beers perfect for enjoying after mowing your lawn.

Ballast Point Kolsch Style Pale Ale, $1.70-$2

Kölsch is a German style that's brewed with ale yeast, then cold conditioned like a lager. Ballast Point's has a slightly hazy straw color with a thin white head. Grain and biscuit aromas dominate the nose along with light whiffs of malt and floral citrus. "Pleasant" is the word that best describes this eminently quaffable brew—light, clean and well balanced between the soft malt and smooth hop flavors.

Firestone Pivo Pils, $1.50-$1.80

Poured from a can, it's a bright straw color with a billowy head that fades quickly. The resiny, herbal hop aromas, with their fresh grass and floral notes, are inviting. The flavors are balanced and smooth, offering an immediate hit of bitter hops playing against creamy malt. You get a hint of caramel and apple on the long finish.

Shiner 107 Hoppy Pilsner Birthday Beer, $1.50-$1.80

Texas-based Spoetzl Brewery is celebrating 107 years in business with this crystal clear, very pale yellow ale. There's a bit of pleasant herbal earthiness to the nose along with floral hops and ripe lemon. Flavor-wise, calling this brew "hoppy" is a bit of a stretch. The flavors center on fruity malt, cracker and bright tropical fruit, with just a touch of hops that you feel more than taste.

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