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Fall Off the Wagon

Three months. 11 beers. You can do this.

Beer

Fall beer drinking is altogether different.

Gone are the lazy, ankle-baring days of summer, when any Freezy Freaky, cold-activated suds will do.

Not so fall, when cooler temps call for more sophisticated, burlier brews.

For recs we turned to Joshua M. Bernstein, hops’pert and author of The Complete Beer Course, out today.

Fresh HopFresh Hop Ales
“It’s harvest season for hops, especially in the Pacific Northwest,” says Bernstein. “Think of hops like fresh cut grass ... it smells amazing right after it’s cut, right? Fresh hop is when the brewers rush the hops to the brew kettle, allowing them to really shine. It’s the beer of the season.”

Drink: Great Divide Fresh Hop Pale Ale, Sierra Nevada Northern Hemisphere, Sixpoint Autumnation
Pair with: Delicate cheeses, chicken – “Nothing too intense.”

Pumpkin AlesPumpkin Ales
“An American classic, from the settlers' days. A true seasonal beer. I like them not too over-the-top or heavily spiced. You need to hit a right balance.” [Ed. note: Beer snobs argue mightily over pumpkin beers; we happen to be fans.]

Drink: Cape Ann Fisherman’s Pumpkin Stout, Elysian Night Owl, Dogfish Head Punkin Ale
Pair with: “Good in and of itself. If not too sweet, a dessert, or even a roast chicken or turkey.”

OktoberfestOktoberfest
“Traditionally, this is beer brewed in March and allowed to rest. Over time, the flavor comes out. It’s a perfect bridge between summer and fall: approachable, but with plenty of flavor and complexity.”

Drink: Great Lakes Oktoberfest, Brooklyn Brewery Oktoberfest, Paulaner Oktoberfest Marzen
Pair with: “Grilled meats and sausage, obviously. Great for washing away the fattiness.”

Gose Beers
An Old German beer style from Leipzig with at least 50% malted wheat. “Low-alcohol, really refreshing, really changing the perception of German brewing ... Try Westbrook out of South Carolina.”

The Standby
Yuengling — always a solid beer,” he says. “One of the oldest breweries in America. It has character, and it’s always appealing. And I can get a case for $16. Which is awesome.”

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