Choosing beer for tailgating isn’t as easy as it seems. Football season opens with balmy, sometimes downright hot weather in the South, but calls for blankets and down coats by the time it wraps up. Then, you have to pick a beer that pairs with your tailgating spread. Finally, it needs a lower alcohol content–necessary for staying upright during a long day of revelry. Here are eleven Southern brews that fit the bill.
Charleston, South Carolina–Light bodied pilsner with fresh, sweet malt notes and a dry light finish, perfect for hot days at the tailgate. Easy to drink, it pairs well with most tailgate dishes–but especially fresher items like veggies and chips and salsa.
Back Forty Beer Company
Truck Stop Honey Brown Ale
Gadsden, Alabama–A medium-bodied brown ale with a sweetness from American wildflower honey that’s balanced with earthy hops. This ale is good choice for sipping with spicy dishes like wings and chili.
Good People Brewing Company
The Bearded Lady American Wheat Ale
Birmingham, Alabama–Great for day drinking due to it is clean, crisp, and refreshing flavor. A lower alcohol content will help you make it to gametime and a mild citrus hop profile lends to its drinkability.
Highland Brewing Company
Clawhammer Octoberfest Lager
Asheville, North Carolina–This seasonal lager ushers in the fall season with pumpkin and spices. It has a brilliant, golden color with a hint of fall flavors and balanced malt profile. This beer captures the flavors of fall in a glass and is a delicious way to start the football festivities.
SweetWater Brewing Company
Atlanta, Georgia–This brew is a mainstay among Southern football fanatics. It will quench your thirst with its bitter yet smooth taste to refresh and revive you for a day in the heat.
Jester King Brewery
Austin, Texas–This saison is a combination of freshly hopped young beer and sour beer aged in oak barrels. It is dry, mildly tart, and thirst-quenching with a low 4.5 percent ABV. Pairs well with spicy foods.
Red Brick Brewing Company
Divine Bovine Stout
Atlanta, Georgia–As the days become chillier, opt for this milk stout with organic chai spices and dark chocolate notes. Its richness and chai spice make for happy sipping during a chilly afternoon.
Avondale Brewing Company
Birmingham, Alabama–Perhaps the perfect tailgating beer for those with a sweet tooth. This kolsch delivers a punch of strawberry balanced with malt and low hop bitterness. Sweet yet savory, this medium-bodied, flavorful brew is on cue for those wanting a lower alcohol, crispy sip on game day.
Westbrook Brewing Company
Mt Pleasant, South Carolina–This refreshing ale, made in the Belgian witbeir style, is made with lemongrass and ginger. It’s sweet yet spicy and wonderfully refreshing.
Good People Brewing Company
Birmingham, Alabama–Don’t let the darker color of Good People’s brown ale fool you–it’s surprisingly drinkable. With a caramel and nutty malt backbone, this beer is perfect for cooler weather. And at 5.4 percent ABV, you can easily sip it until game time.