Photographer: Jack Andersen/Getty Images
Beer

Five Top Beer Masters Recommend Their Favorite Brews for Fall

These bar owners have their eyes on a whole range of hoppy treats for the new season

Now that summer is drawing to a close, and fall is nigh upon us, we spoke to five beer experts to see which brews they will be hunting down for the new season. The group—four from the U.S. Northeast and one from Sweden—chose a wide selection of rare and readily available saisons, pale ales, and more.

 

Justin Philips, Owner of Beer Table

From left: The Commons’ Fleur de Ferme; Dieu du Ciel!’s Route des Épices.
From left: The Commons’ Fleur de Ferme; Dieu du Ciel!’s Route des Épices.
Source: (from left) Made in Oregon/Courtesy of The Commons; Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!

The Commons – Fleur de Ferme (USA, Oregon)

“The Commons’ Fleur de Ferme satisfies a few specific fall cravings; it’s somewhat rich, deep in color, and has a botanical complexity that is wonderfully integrated with its body and texture. Brewed with a late addition of hibiscus, lavender, and chamomile, its mahogany sweetness calls for something salty, charred, and possibly vegetal. I could see this marrying beautifully with Brussels sprouts that have danced around a screaming hot cast-iron pan.

Dieu du Ciel! – Route des Épices (Canada)

“I have an affinity for spicy things but acknowledge that most beers brewed with spicy ingredients are failures in terms of balance. Dieu du Ciel!’s Route des Épices however has the skeletal structure of a robust enough creature to support its sharp teeth. . The rich, bready rye carries the aroma and finishing flavor of black pepper with ease. But pair with caution! This will require some particularly pungent cheese or a bloody piece of meat.”

 

Cory Bonfiglio, Manager at Proletariat

From left: Jolly Pumpkin’s Fuego del Otoño; Stillwater Artisanal's Autumnal.
From left: Jolly Pumpkin’s Fuego del Otoño; Stillwater Artisanal's Autumnal.
Source: (from left) Craftshack.com; Stillwater Artisanal

Jolly Pumpkin – Fuego del Otoño (USA, Michigan)

“As the seasons change, most folks busy themselves with work, family, and social activities to avoid falling into a seasonal funk. I, however, embrace the funk with open arms — and an unslakable thirst! Jolly Pumpkin reliably obliges my funky, cool-weather inclinations with its Fuego del Otoño, an oak-fermented, subtly complex farmhouse amber ale with chestnuts. The Autumn Fire offers a velvety mouthfeel punctuated by overripe stone fruit and slight citrusy notes. Implied caramel and spice qualities offset an ever-present yet subdued funkiness, evoking early sunsets and cool evenings. This s--t is f---ing beautiful.”

Stillwater Artisanal – Autumnal (USA, Maryland)

“Pale ales, lagers, and all manner of wheat beer still reign supreme in today's craft segment, while many antiquated and traditional styles remain outliers for only the most dedicated of beer geeks to pursue. Never one to back away from a challenge, Stillwater Artisanal's Brian Strumke took on our beloved Düsseldorf Altbier style the only way he knew how: by assembling a beer independent of classic definition! Autumnal begins with a base of German malts and just a pinch of wheat. After a generous addition of old- and new-school German hops, it is fermented to well-attenuated perfection by an expressive Belgian farmhouse yeast strain, further coaxing fruity esters from this otherwise dry, earthy, fruity, deep copper beer. Not to be missed.”

 

Chris Lively, Owner of Ebenezer’s Pub

From left: De Struise’s Pannepot; Hanssens Artisanaal’s Oude Kriek.
From left: De Struise’s Pannepot; Hanssens Artisanaal’s Oude Kriek.
Source: (from left) De Struise; Ratebeer.com

De Struise – Pannepot (Belgium)

“As the summer dwindles, I think of De Struise’s Pannepot in my glass. Huge notes of figs, raisins, cherries, vanilla, and the most subtle hint of spice round out this beautiful mahogany brew. A true delight for the season. Pair this with a traditional French cassoulet and you are in for a gorgeous experience!”

Hanssens Artisanaal – Oude Kriek (Belgium)

“My next choice would be Hanssens Artisanaal’s Oude Kriek. No need to feel excessively full in the fall! Easily accessible in most fine beer outlets, this approachable cherry lambic ale pairs well with the heartiest of salads, packing a nice sourness and a funky ride on the palate you're sure to enjoy.”

 

Nathan Hobbs, Owner of the Dirty Truth and Seymour, the Pub

From left: Mahr’s-Bräu’s Ungespundet; De Ranke’s XX Bitter.
From left: Mahr’s-Bräu’s Ungespundet; De Ranke’s XX Bitter.
Source: (from left) Mahr’s-Bräu; Ratebeer.com

Mahr’s-Bräu – Ungespundet-hefetrüb (Germany)

“My two recommendations are complex, nuanced beers that I love in all seasons, and especially in autumn; they complement the season's own rich and layered nuance. Mahr’s Ungespundet, an unfiltered, lightly carbonated Franconian lager, is an elegant union of mild hoppiness and delicate roast of malt. It is charming, yet powerful in its subtle structure and order.”

De Ranke – XX Bitter (Belgium)

“De Ranke’s XX Bitter has considerable hop bitterness, but is balanced with an oily, mineral softness, without being overly sweet or flabby. These beers match the fall and its austere beauty perfectly for me.”

 

Magnus Svensson, “Head of Stuff” at BrewDog Bar Sweden and MankerBeer.com

From left: Brekeriet’s Brillant; Brewski’s AnanasFeber.
From left: Brekeriet’s Brillant; Brewski’s AnanasFeber.
Source: (from left) Brekeriet; Jeff Flindt/Courtesy of Breski

Brekeriet – Brillant (Sweden)

“The fall is upon us and here in Sweden we get rain and wind from all different directions for about six months, so to compensate let’s drink some awesome summery brews! Brekeriet’s Brillant is a saison-style ale brewed with Brettanomyces [a wild yeast] in the south of Sweden. Pour the beer into a snifter, swirl it around, and the aroma of citrus, fruity esters, and slight funk will be revealed. A light, refreshing taste of pear, hay, and citrus zest pairs really well with something heavy and salty such as a bacon-wrapped grilled cheese or your favorite burger! Brekeriet is distributed by Shelton Brothers in the U.S.”

Brewski – AnanasFeber (Sweden)

“Brewski’s AnanasFeber gives you a massive pineapple slap-in-the-face with loads of bitter hop flavors. This American-style pale ale kicks in at 5 percent alcohol by volume. Hints of tartness to accompany the fruit flavor means get yourself a fish taco with heaps of salsa and fly off into taste heaven. Brewski is a shooting star on the Swedish brewing sky, with the most awesome team imaginable located in Helsingborg. In October, Shelton Brothers will get a few pallets of their beers for distribution in the U.S.”

Before it's here, it's on the Bloomberg Terminal. LEARN MORE