Monday, July 13, 2015

Help me assemble this year’s “Best canned beers for Saratoga” list

One of the best perks of this “job” is taste testing beers in the name of consumer advocacy. Every July, when Saratoga Race Course is about to open (Friday, July 24th this year), I begin buying up a bunch of canned beers to determine if it’s the kind that would be ideal to bring to the track on a hot summer day.

NOTE: in case you didn’t know, Saratoga Race Course allows patrons to bring canned beers in for personal consumption. Interestingly enough, they have banned selfie sticks this year!

This will be my third year making a “Top 10 Best Canned Beers to Bring to Saratoga” list, but I wanted to do something a little different this year. First and foremost: no repeats from past years’ lists. That’s not to say I don’t recommend beers from previous lists, just that I want to keep the list as fresh and up-to-date as possible. New canned beers are released all the time – so why fill up a list with beers that have been around for years?

As you can see from what’s in my fridge, there are lot of candidates to consider for the 2015 list:

canned beers 029

canned beers 030
And these are just the beers I’m going to be reviewing over the next two weeks. They don’t include all the other canned beers I’ve drank and reviewed in the last 10 months.

But as the headline of this blog indicates, I need your help in compiling this list. Specifically, by nominating beers you would (or will) bring to Saratoga to drink. The only catch? They can’t be beers that have made my list in 2013 and/or 2014, so the following are ineligible:

Anderson Valley Summer Solstice
Bitburger Premium Pils
Blanche de Bruxelles
Brooklyn Summer Ale
Bronx Pale Ale
Butternuts Heinnieweisse
Caldera Pale Ale
Evil Twin Bikini Beer
Founders All Day IPA
Genesee Bock
Harpoon UFO White
Magic Hat #9
Narragansett Summer Ale
Oskar Blues Dale’s Pale Ale
Sierra Nevada Pale Ale
Sierra Nevada Summerfest Lager
Sixpoint Apollo
Sixpoint The Crisp
Sixpoint Rad
Stillwater Classique
Trader Joe’s Name Tag Lager
Upstate Brewing Common Sense
Westbrook Gose
Yuengling Light

Yes I’m aware there are more than 20 beers on this list. This includes ties and honorable mentions.

NOTE: Standard rules apply: only beers which are readily available for sale in the Capital District are eligible (so no Heady Topper). Also, you can nominate all the IPAs, DIPAs, and Imperial Stouts you want but it’s unlikely they’ll make my list. These beers should be conducive to the atmosphere: sessionable, refreshing, and relatively light (so again – no Herdy Terper).

Top 10 best canned beers to bring to Saratoga Race Course (2014 edition)
Top 10 best canned beers to bring to Saratoga Race Course (2013 edition)

P.S. Those two “Mountain Brew Beers” are not in contention for this list. I’m going to write a completely separate blog about them sometime soon.

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