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7 Tasty Post-Run Beers
Tuesday, January 24, 2012 | by Runner's World |
When it comes to replenishing after a tough workout, it's hard to beat sports drink or a tall glass of chocolate milk. That said, there's no denying that some days we prefer a beverage that's a bit more bracing. Like a nice beer. To help you get the most out of a post-run brew–whether you're searching for a recovery boost, big flavors, or even an ale that can rehydrate you–we've got a few delicious options.
Saint Arnold Fancy Lawnmower
Though named after "lawnmower beer"–the designation given any light, refreshing brew that feels euphoric after an afternoon under the beating sun–Fancy Lawnmower is much richer. Instead of the usual yellow, watered-down lager, Saint Arnold mimics the German Kolsch style that's light in color, but never short on flavor. More impressively, it packs the bready, citrus character into a bottle with only 3.9% alcohol, which studies show is low enough that it may actually rehydrate you (just a little). Prefer the dark side? Try Santo, Saint Arnold's roasty, stout-like version of Fancy Lawnmower.
Tasters say: "Terrific post-run beverage! Very drinkable, but not watery."
Track Town Triple Jump Pale Ale
Few tracks in the world have the history of Eugene, Oregon's Hayward Field, which will host the Track and Field Olympic Trials again this summer. And absolutely no other track has a line of ales brewed in its honor. Just a short jog across town from the facility is the Eugene City Brewery, which among its Track Town beers produces the Triple Jump Pale Ale. More approachable than their 200 Meter IPA, and more satisfying than their Honey Orange Wheat, the Triple Jump complements Pacific Northwest hops with locally grown barley. The resulting mixture makes a complex all-American beer that's just as welcome after a track session as it is when you're sitting in the stands.
Tasters say: "Nice and crisp. Much more going on than your average pale ale."
Harpoon Munich Dark
Hailing from Boston, this brown lager makes an ideal post-run (or post-marathon) reward with its tasty mix of crisp roasted barley and smooth cocoa with hints of coffee and molasses. Harpoon uses a healthy portion of hops to temper the malt sweetness, and make a deliciously balanced beer that's not too heavy to enjoy when you're thirsty, yet satisfying after a rough day. Bonus: The dark grains that define this beer give it an antioxidant power similar to that of red wine.
Tasters say: "Forget post-run. The lower carbonation seems perfect for a mid-run beer."
Stone Ruination IPA
This India Pale Ale from SoCal boasts a tongue-crushing 100+ bittering units (for comparison, Budweiser has 11), making it one of the world's hoppiest beers. While the 2.5 pounds of hops per barrel is great for beer lovers who crave the bitter citrus bite, the hops are also loaded with polyphenols, antioxidants that repair damaged cells and protect your heart. Be warned: At 7.7% alcohol, this ale is to sip, not guzzle.
Tasters say: "Intense with a long bitter finish. One or two and you're guaranteed a good post-run nap."
In the tradition of the storied Belgian brewers, Portland, Maine's Allagash Brewing has recreated the witbier with impressive accuracy. The more familiar Blue Moon from Coors chases after the same Belgian wheat beer style, but Allagash brews up the real deal. The toasty malts, spicy lemon zest and orange flavors are set off by the crisp, Champagne-like carbonation, to make a beer that's just as welcoming on a sweaty day as it is after a chilly long run.
Tasters say: "Very bubbly; tickles my tongue. Spicy, like a holiday nog."
Brewed at Bavaria's oldest wheat beer brewery, Schneider Weisse is a hallmark of the hefeweizen (unfiltered German wheat ale) style. The distinct blend of banana, orange and clove flavors over subtly sweet wheat bread amplifies the common hefe character. Like the Allagash White, this hazy wheat is beer packed with brewer's yeast. The alcohol- and CO2-producing cells provide the snappy carbonation, but are also packed with B vitamins, which can boost recovery. Yeast settles out of suspension in beer, so to ensure you get it all, swirl the bottle when it's less than a quarter full to pick the yeast up off the bottom of the bottle.
Tasters say: "A favorite among wheat beers. Finishes sweet."
Smuttynose Old Brown Dog
It's not unusual for Super Bowl-sponsoring megabrewers to send kegs to a marathon, but New Hampshire's Smuttynose microbrewery sponsors the yearlong Will Run for Beer race series. Their Old Brown Dog brown ale makes an ideal recovery beverage for races in New England's harsh winter, with a slightly sweet taste and thicker body. The dark malts skew towards coffee, with lighter cocoa and caramel flavors that go down surprisingly easy.
Tasters say: "Smooth and well balanced. A classic brown ale."
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Lots of great beers missing here! Fat Tire, 3 Floyds, Founders....c'mon!
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