1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

Summer Solstice - Anderson Valley Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Summer SolsticeSummer Solstice

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,317 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,317
Reviews: 457
rAvg: 3.68
pDev: 15.76%
Wants: 45
Gots: 114 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Anderson Valley Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Cream Ale |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: xlperro on 05-09-2005

Our Summer Solstice Seasonal Ale is a slightly sweet, malty session beer with a creamy mouth feel and clean finish. With hints of caramel in the nose and a touch of spice, it’s become affectionately known as “cream soda for adults”. The unique flavors and superior drinkability make for the ultimate refreshment on a hot summer day.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Summer Solstice Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,317 | Reviews: 457 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of GR_Rick
2.9/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured July 13, 2012 from undated bottle.

Reviewing with New Glarus' Spotted Cow as my anchor for this style.

A: Pours a nice deep caramel/amber color with a little under a finger of head (aggressive pour). Short head retention, gone after a few minutes, but nice lacing. Darker than I expected for a summer seasonal.

S: Caramel/sugary sweetness with a little bit of grainy undertones. Follows the appearance pretty well.

T: Taste doesn't quite follow the nose for me. I get more grainy taste and less sweetness, although there certainly still is some sweetness underneath showing up in the form of cream soda and graham cracker near the finish. No hop and very little bitterness.

Taste is definitely to style, but with a little more complexity than I'm used to in a cream ale. Cream ale isn't necessarily a style of choice for me, but I'd heard such good things about this beer that I had to try it when I saw it at the store.

M: Nicely carbonated and medium bodied. A little thicker than I personally like in a summer beer, but seems to be to style. Goes down easy, but not something I'd want to have multiple of, which is something I look for personally in a summer beer.

O: I had pretty high expectations coming into this beer and overall I was disappointed. It's not a bad beer by any means, just not as good as I was expecting. I'd try it again, but there are a lot of beers out there I'd go for first before having one of these again.

Photo of MightiestBeard
3/5  rDev -18.5%

Photo of iKrystin
4/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of EyePeeAyBryan
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of Cookie8
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of JohnK17
3.25/5  rDev -11.7%

Photo of hanlonrn
4/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of StoutHunter
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked up a can of Anderson Valley's Summer Solstice for $1.79 at The Lager Mill. I like Cream Ale's but I haven't tried many so I thought I should give this beer a try, lets see how it goes. No visible bottling date, but I know it's a fresh summer release. Poured from a 12oz can into a imperial pint glass.

A- The can looks good, but similar to all their other cans, I do like the golden background. It poured a hazy amber color that looked the same when held to the light and it had three and a half fingers worth of creamy off white head that died down to a thin ring that stayed till the end and left some nice rings of lacing. This is a good looking Cream Ale, I have no complaints.

S- The aroma starts off with malts that have a medium amount of sweetness and impart some caramel, grainy, and bready aromas. Next comes a light vanilla aroma that is followed by a nice and noticeable creamy aroma that is a little similar to the way a cream soda smells. Towards the end I get a slight toasted aroma along with a little more caramel malts and some earthy and slightly grassy hops. I like the aroma of this beer, it's nice and malts with some light cream and vanilla aromas to make it stand out.

T- The taste seems to be pretty similar to the aroma and it starts off with a good amount of malts that have a lower amount of medium sweetness and impart some grainy, caramel malt, bready, and slightly toasted flavors. Next comes the cream aspect which imparts some lighter creamy flavors along with a slight bit of vanilla. On the finish there is hardly any bitterness and it had a grainy and slightly creamy aftertaste. I like the taste of this beer, it's got some good balance and it has a nice creamy aspect.

M- Very smooth, creamy, slightly crisp, medium bodied with a good amount of medium carbonation. I liked the mouthfeel of this beer and it worked well with this style, I have no complaints.

Overall I liked this beer and was a little impressed with it, I also thought it was pretty good example of a Cream Ale, the Cream Ale aspects of this beer showed up nicely and made this beer pretty true to style. This beer had great drinkability, it went down really smooth and it had enough flavor to hold my attention, this would make a good warm weather beer, I could see drinking three or four of these on a nice summer afternoon. What I liked most about this beer was how true to style this beer was and how well put together it was. What I liked least about this beer was nothing, I can't think of anything that I would want to change about this beer. I would buy this beer again when in the mood for a nicer Cream Ale and I recommend this beer to just about anyone. Anderson Valley makes some pretty solid beers, while this isn't my favorite from them, it sure is close. My gt to Cream Ale is Genny Cream, it's cheap and tastes good, but I feel that this beer has much better flavors and overall is better a Cream Ale, but till Anderson Valley can match the price and put this in 30 packs, I will still be keeping the Genny Cream on hand, but when I want to switch it up with a better tasting Cream Ale, I will go with this beer. Good job guys, I will be on the look out for more of your beers.

Photo of kojevergas
2.9/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a Guinness pint glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are average.

Served straight from the refrigerator. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a two finger beige-light khaki head of fair cream, pretty decent thickness, and above average retention. Colour is a clear gold. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show.

Sm: Clean malts, wheat, ripe orange peel (over ripe methinks...), cream, and caramel. Orange flavored toffee hints perhaps. A mild strength aroma.

T: Wheat, orange peel, vague butterscotchy notes, a hint of toffee, caramel, and cream. Interestingly built, with bright malts coming through. The fruit is vague and indistinct. The butterscotch is off, perhaps a diacetyl note. Simple and lacking depth or subtlety.

Mf: Smooth and wet, with some nice coarseness about the climax. Nice carbonation. Moderate on the palate.

Dr: Drinkable but boring and underwhelming. It's a fair summer beer - pleasant and fresh and that - but there's little here that would bring me back to it. A decent offering, but still rather meh.


Photo of maximep
3.85/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

this is one of the more accessible beers to a wide audience in both taste and availability. Anderson Valley always crushes malt profile in their beer and this is no exception; this brew is absolutely phenomenal. One of the most drinkable ales in America. SRSLY.

A- Golden, wheaty

S- really bright and vanilla-y sweetness that has a hint of grassy and chocolate

T- sweet, vanilla, chocolate, amazing brew. Light tasting, not overly complex. really nice highlighting of the malt. no hop bitterness but grassy hop aroma.

M- creamy, full bodied yet light. Nice pure white head.

O- one of America's great beers. Perfect sweetness and ABV so you can drink 2-3 and feel well satisfied and light.

Photo of amstokesdb9
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%

Photo of buckyp
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of Chugs13
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of Fleeflam
1.75/5  rDev -52.4%

Photo of Hatzilla
3.98/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. can poured into a Newcastle schooner.

A: A clear darkish orange, similar to iced tea. Little to no head or lacing.

S: Cream soda, vanilla, orange and spices.

T: Very tasty, I can definitely taste the cream, vanilla and orange. There is also a light nutty/roastiness similar to a brown ale.

M: Lively mouthfeel and carb, with a dry finish. Malty cream soda sticks around in the aftertaste.

O: A very drinkable cream ale, not what I was expecting for a summer ale but a pleasant surprise. Cheers!

Photo of trc5004
1/5  rDev -72.8%

Photo of mccorjf54
4/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of strongaf
3.25/5  rDev -11.7%

Photo of HamGlade10
4/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of Shnanign
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%

Photo of buiter
4.5/5  rDev +22.3%

Photo of gutbuster
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of Maegodfrey14
3.25/5  rDev -11.7%

Photo of ajanesz
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%

Photo of George2744
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%

Summer Solstice from Anderson Valley Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 1,317 ratings.