There are two types of adventurers in this world (or at least, in Colorado): those who wrap up big mission days—whether it be a full-day ski tour, a 30-plus-mile mountain bike ride, or bagging a 14er—with an icy cold IPA in the parking lot, and those who unabashedly grab a Radler out of the cooler. I fall into the second camp. Give me something light, citrusy, and refreshing after a sweat fest. Give me 10 Barrel Brewing’s Swill American Radler.
Founded by three beer lovers in Bend, Ore. in 2006, 10 Barrel Brewing has since grown and opened brew pubs in Boise, Idaho, Portland, Ore., San Diego, Calif., and Denver, Colo. It’s no coincidence that those addresses are home to known beer lovers and outdoor adventurers—10 Barrel Brewing is crafted for people who like to play outside, indicated by the brand’s credo stamped on every can of beer: Drink Beer Outside.
More beer for skiers: Patagonia Provisions Long Root Wit
While the brand has a number of year-round IPAs, lagers, and sours that pair well with the outdoors, it’s their Swill American Radler, a 2019 seasonal offering, that’s the ultimate outdoor activity beer.
While some beer lovers might look down on the Radler—traditionally a light beer mixed with citrus soda—as a fruity concoction masquerading as a beer, I can’t imagine drinking anything else during or after outdoor activity. Having grown up in Germany, birthplace of the Radler (the German word for “biker”), I’ve been trained like Pavlov’s dog to expect the refreshing combo of a German Helles and lemon soda when reaching the top of the mountain or the end of a long ride.
10 Barrell’s Americanized Swill delivers the same thirst-quenching satisfaction as a traditional German Radler, but with a true craft-brew twist. Instead of featuring a traditional German-style lager as its base, 10 Barrell blends an American Sour ale with multiple layers of citrus to give their radler added tanginess. The result is a light, citrusy beer with refreshing notes of grapefruit that’s almost too crushable.
10 Barrel Brewing Swill
Beer type: American Radler
Flavor Profile: Sweet and sour, lemon tartness, bright grapefruit notes
Pairs well with: Sweat and exertion