Craft breweries have been engaged in a limbo contest, seeing how low they can go with alcohol content. Bitters, IPAs, and spicy saisons dip below 5 percent ABV, as breweries devise session beers that are light in alcohol, yet loaded with flavor — perfect to sip by the six-pack
A few top brewers have continued to lower the boozy bar, creating beers that weigh in at less than 4 percent ABV. Welcome to the ultra-session beer. “It’s the next frontier right now,” says Christian Ettinger, the brewmaster and owner at Portland, Oregon’s Hopworks Urban Brewery.
He recently unveiled Nonstop Hef Hop, a wheat-driven, highly hopped ale that registers a wee 3.9 percent. “We’re calling it a sport beer for active people,” says Ettinger, who underscores the point by featuring 12 different sports like kayaking and cycling on the cans.
Whether you’re recuperating after a grueling bike ride or looking for the perfect rehydration beer, here are eight great ultra-session beers to drink anytime.