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Harpoon Summer Beer - Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall

Not Rated.
Harpoon Summer BeerHarpoon Summer Beer

Educational use only; do not reuse.

380 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 380
Hads: 1,035
Avg: 3.58
pDev: 13.41%
Wants: 25
Gots: 181 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Kölsch |  4.80% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: pezoids on 09-08-2001

Harpoon Summer Beer is a beer brewed to be enjoyed with summertime activities. It is light, refreshing, and crisp.

28 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 380 | Hads: 1,035
Photo of AnalogReigns
4.88/5  rDev +36.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Koelsch is best drank at celler (50F) temperature, not ice cold.

A: A beautiful beer, pours perfectly into a Koelsch glass, with a tall fluffy long lasting head (always a sign of a good German style beer). Light bright golden color, no cloudiness at all.

S: Noble hops apparent in the smell, with some floral notes, as is typical of this style, as tasted in Cologne.

T: This really is an excellent version of the classic Koelsch style. Slightly sweet very well ballenced, with a solid hop finish--and a very nice bread-like aftertaste. One can taste a very subtle kind of hint of cherry from the ale-temp fermentation (NO cherry flavor added thank you!) .

M: Full but not thick...and very refreshing on the palate. A great alternative to weiss beers, in my opinion.

D: Summer beer brings out the girly beers....and of course lots of weissens. This is a beer you can drink in the finest company--as it really is a delicate wonderfully tasting, the fussiest wine drinker may like it... but its not a trendy wheat beer either, and even bud drinkers will like it, I'd wager. This kind of beer could well turn a beer-philistine into a true beer-geek connoisseur.

I spent a few days in Cologne last year, and sampled several brands of Koelsch there (and brought a Stange glass home). Koelsch is a tremendously tastey and rare style--and it's amazing how fast the Koelners can drink them, and serve them! This is the closest I've had in North America to what you get there. Koelsch is a very delicate beer, and spoils quickly, so even the German brands available on tap I've had in the USA don't taste as authentically Koeln-ish as Harpoon. Try it fellow Geeks!

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Photo of billybob
4.85/5  rDev +35.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

pours a hazy golden color with a white three finger head that holds to one finger then fades to just cover the beer. smell is of earthy malt and spice from the hops. rich wheat malt up front then the hops pick up the middle to a slightly bitter end. light and crisp with lots of carbonation. really like this beer style, great session beer.

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Photo of woodychandler
4.78/5  rDev +33.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

The CANQuest is quickly approaching 300! CAN you believe it?!?

From the CAN: "Harpoon Summer Beer is a refreshing example of the German Kolsch style: golden, light-bodied, crisp. Perfect for summer." "Love Beer. Love Life. Harpoon." "Pack it in, pack it out. Please recycle."

My initial pour garnered me a finger of bone-white head with excellent retention. Color was like liquid sunshine - a bright golden yellow with NE-plus quality clarity. Man, if you are going to make a lager-style beer, which Kolsch is, it had better have this kind of clarity. Nose had a grassy hoppiness, just right for the style. Mouthfeel was medium with a very grassy taste on the tongue. Finish was bone-dry, just the way I like my Kolschs. Phew! Gad, but this was extra dry, like ginger ale or antiperspirant. Now, I'm starting to sweat, in an odd turn of events. More? Dang right! Cooler? Heck, yes! This was really, really good in a way that the bottled version CANnot match. I love this beer.

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Photo of BeerKangaroo
4.7/5  rDev +31.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Into a pint glass (later tried in a stange, no changes):

A: clear yellow colored body with a soft white lumpy head that lasts about a good three minutes. It leaves some lacing around the sides of the glass and it slides nicely down their sides as the beer goes down. The carbonation is slowly rising.

S: some lemon and wheaty grains, basically balanced well.

T: mostly sweet through the lemon and the wheaty grains, leaves you wanting more.

M: light yet well balanced with a clean finish in this. This is a pretty sessionable beer.

O: this is actually a very good summer beer. I've had several of these before I decided to give a it a review so I could be as fair as possible. I would definitely have this again. I wasn't actually expecting it to be this good. This may be my favorite by Harpoon. Well done!

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Photo of blakesell
4.6/5  rDev +28.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle has best before 08/10/07 (whoops, a month late), poured from 12oz bottle into belgian style curved pilsner? glass.

Appearance- Head is rocky and fluffy, it looks like a glacier has formed and is about to hit any stray boats that may come in contact with it. Dissapates to a fluffy cloud of small creamy bubbles. Colour is the lightest beer I've poured for myself in years. It looks to be Miller Lite with a great head by some fluke of nature.

Smell- Fresh green apples with light fruity characteristics. Some pear hiding out in there as well. Even a little peach. I like the way this smell is going.

Taste- Nice, smooth light malt with a wonderful hop backbone. A hint of corn, but not overpowering due to the fruity essences that the hops give off.

Mouthfeel- Beer goes down smooth. No cloying character at all, not even a sour kick at the end. This beer may be expired by technicality, but it is still fresh physically.

Drinkability- Extremely drinkable. A delicious easy quaffing lawnmower beer that I wish I had more of during this hot weather. Very refreshing.

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Photo of MrHurmateeowish
4.52/5  rDev +26.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12oz bottle purchased as part of a 12-pack at Shaw's in Windham, NH. Bottle says "Best By 7-15-10". Not a big seller at this store, methinks. Pours a straw-yellow body with nearly an inch of white-ish head. Smells fruity - lemon in particular comes to mind - with some spice, vanilla, and floral notes. Lemon and pulp hit the palate initially, with some restrained floral and spice notes and a mostly clean finish. Light and effervescent in nature - an easy drinker for sure on a 90+ degree day like today. A great summer seasonal - simple and balanced but with a little complexity to keep things interesting. Drinkable but not boring. Stands out among the American Pale Wheat Ales and Blonde Ales that flood the market this time of year.

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Photo of JackWeizen
4.51/5  rDev +26%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer pours light yellow with a fat head that reseeds but never fades out due to a constant champagne like bubbling in the glass. The smell is a nice clean balance of light malts and just the right hint of hops. I want to brew this.

The taste is great for a summer seasonal. No flavor overwhelms another, but together they make for a highly drinkable brew that is sessionalble, and satisfying. The malt and hops seem to literally dance around each other on the tongue. Is it bitter? Is it sweet? Its both.

It goes down like water for me, but holds a respectable alcohol content that will make me wish I didn't kill the whole sixer. I will be getting more of this... Soon.

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Photo of Kaiser777
4.48/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A- First off I love how the bubbles do not stop, its like the sands of time slowly melting away, it is golden with a awesome white head that leaves a light lace, but I am still impressed by the carbonation!

S- Has a sent of citrus with a lemon sting, also very similar to a pilsner which i have come to respect.

T- Phenomenal I love the carbonation, the different tingles you get as if your where biting into a fresh grapefruit, with what I can only say is a kick ass after taste, you guest it I am a fan.

MF- Like I said kick ass, the tingle it leaves on the tongue is greatly appreciated, the carbonation is as beautiful as the bubbles you see by the thousands rising in the glass as good in the mouth, wow big time!

D- I could drink this beer all the time it never disappoints, it is very enjoyable and i wish this beer was year around like the fellows who brews it can get it, makes me want to move there all jokes aside, let me know if there hiring!

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Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4.48/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle, served in a pint glass.

A - clear golden yellow color with a big fluffy white head that hung around for the whole beer leaving lots of lacing behind.

S - good beer, that's the only way to describe the smell.

T - very good, light, crisp, refreshing summer beer.

M - light bodied, crisp and clean, perfect amount of carbonation.

D - great summer drinking beer!

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Photo of UnderPressure
4.45/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Lemonade yellow. Fluffy white head. Not many bubbles in the liquid.
Noble hop aroma, and (I assume Kolsch) yeast. Smells a little like green tea.
Nice, interesting hop character. Green tea notes in aftertaste. Refreshing, but not empty-bodied.
Fizzy and smooth medium-thin mouthfeel.
Overall, this is a fantastic beer. From now on, this will be a summertime staple for me. I just wish I'd discovered it earlier in the season.

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Photo of rabsten
4.42/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle into a pint glass, hazy yellow with thick, sticky head, lots of bubbles.

Hop hit up front with balanced malt and slight alcohol aroma. Smells like "beer," if that makes any sense. Like a really good, fresh eurolager.

Malt up fron in the mouth with a bright, crisp hop finish. Tasty. Like the smell, very eurolager-y, but fresher.

Crisp, dry and refreshing. Good carbonation - not so much as to bite, but enough to refresh.

Very drinkable. Goes down well and makes you want another.

BL: another winner from the 'Poon.

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Photo of russpowell
4.39/5  rDev +22.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this one from LarryG, cheers Larry. BBD of 07/15/10 let's see how this holds up...Looks like it held up just fine!

Pours an effervescent light straw color with 2 fingers of ivory colored head. Above average head retention & lacing

S: Breadyness, grainyness, floral hop notes, plus pears & apple blossoms

T: Follows the nose, nice grassy notes intertwine with pear notes up front. Slight honey notes mix with fruittyness as this warms, plus grassy hops & touch of grainyness> Finishes with a touch of white grapes, lemony hops & general crispness

MF: Light/Medium bodied, soft carbonation & nice balance

Great drinkability, a very good take on a under appreciated style

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Photo of shand
4.38/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle marked Best By November 12th into a pint glass.

Appearance: Very good looking. Pours a golden color with about two and a half fingers of rich, fluffy head. Retention is alright, and lacing is excellent.

Smell: Floral hops and breads.

Taste: Bready malts wash over the tongue. The aftertaste has a little kick of floral hop aftertaste. Very pilsner-esque in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Where this isn't pilsner-esque is the mouthfeel. This is barely carbonated at all. It goes down smooth and all, but I expected something a little more bubbly. It's not all that bad though, because...

Drinkable: This has absolutely perfect drinkability. The smooth flavor and the laid-back carbonation makes it incredibly drinkable. The aftertaste is perfect, just a hint of bitterness to make you want to drink more.

This is an excellent summer brew. I'm going to go clear out the stock of my local store tomorrow since it's still going over 90 degrees here in Florida.

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Photo of grospopperino
4.35/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Kolsch style is my favorite summer beer (sorry- no umlaut). Kolsch is actually a cold-lagered ale. Kolsch should have a light, crisp, refreshing flavor. This year's Harpoon Summer Beer fits the bill. Clean, balanced flavor with no better or clinging after-taste. Not an exciting beer with a big hop wallop or strong dark-roasted malts, but it is a beer that is subtle and achieves a delicate balance and must be brewed with care. Thank you, Harpoon.

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Photo of JoKo
4.35/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Kolsch glass:

Appearance: Poured a ginger yellow color with a inch thick white head, highly carbonated.

Smell: Smell was malty sweetness up front with a little hoppy citrus notes lingering in the background.

Taste: Hop presence up front with a malts in the background. Contrary to the smell, taste of grape and citrus, the hops are definitely dominant in this beer.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is light and crisp.

Drinkability: Overall, very drinkable, crisp, refreshing beer. It is prefect for those hot summer days so it definitely lives up to it's title.

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Photo of BeerNinja007
4.35/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Had a pint of casked Harpoon Summer Beer at the Windsor VT brewery on July 10th 2010. Review transcribed from notes.

Room temp cask brew served in a Harpoon pint glass. Cloudy yellow brew with a little visible carbonation and a creamy flat white head. Smells a little like a hayfield- dry, clover, grass, hay. A bit of skunk and lemon hops. Mouthfeel is pretty still, almost flat, but very smooth and creamy, especially for a beer this light (thank you, cask!). The head leaves a lot of curtainy lace. Taste follows directly from the smell. As it warms I get a bit of melon, mango, tropicals.

My father had a pint of the same brew from a tap pour at the same time that I was drinking my casked version. It was very interesting to compare them side-by-side. The tapped brew was, predictably, more carbonated, clear and crisp. The flavors were more sharp and identifiable, more lemon and skunk, compared to the rounded and smooth cask flavors. I know that's what's supposed to happen, but it was really cool to experience it myself so clearly.

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Photo of OatmattStout
4.33/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer had a nice white fluffy head that left a foamy lace on the glass. The smell was of fresh white bread and sublte malty sweetness. The flavors followed suit, a little sweet, very refreshing with bready, grainy notes. It finishes a mildly dry. It has a really nice full mouthfeel and overall a really great beer and a great American version of a Kolsch. I will drink this one all summer

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Photo of marc77
4.33/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Light golden in hue w/ brilliant, lager like clarity. Well retained white head leaves good lace. Lightly grainy malt aroma w/ a slightly spicy noble hop nose, perhaps from a Saaz / Spalt combination. Slightly tart wheat & clean, appropriately light hop bitterness gives way to smooth and lightly bready malt. Clean, refined, and true to style. Moderately bodied, w/ an agreeable mouthfeel that helps lend excellent drinkability. Although secondary, hop flavor is perceptibly grassy and a bit spicy. Finishes w/ pleasant grainy base malt flavors quickly fading. Harpoon Summer Beer is a definitive example of a Kolsch. It's highly drinkable and soft on the palette, but not at all bland.

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Photo of pezoids
4.33/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured a yellowish gold color with loads of carbonation and a large white head of foamy goodness. Slight chill haze apparent, but disappeared after a few sips. Golden and lively. The aroma yields pleasant notes of sweet and fresh nutty grains, pine and just a hint of caramel butter. The taste is very pleasing. Light, yet flavorful with a slightly sweet and bitter tang finish. Wow, this is an excellent beer! A great Americanized version of a German Kolsch beer. Crisp, clean and could be the near perfect summer beer. Left me wanting more!

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Photo of RomaniIteDomum
4.32/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours light yellow with a very nice cloud-like head. Looks slightly reminiscent of BMC brews, but this has a bit of lacing to it and can maintain a head.

The nose is full of fresh grain, straw, and pear.

The taste starts with Granny Smith apples and follows into sweet malt and finishes with a light floral quality.

The feel is light, yet not watery.

This is a very refreshing brew. I love how it can be light and refreshing while maintaining character and depth of flavor. This is canned sunshine.

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Photo of techdiver
4.31/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a pale golden yellow with a big frothy head that diminishes slowly leaving very nice lacing and displays great carbonation.

Well balanced malt and hops nose.

Taste is very well balanced. A great Kölsch, compares favorably to Reissdorf.

Mouthfeel is crisp, clean, and light.

Most drinkable, very suitable for a summer session.

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Photo of DrewS
4.28/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Just got some of the 2002 batch and is really fresh. Has a very clear, golden yellow appearance. A nice frothy head formed at the top and had a pleasing grain aroma. Very easy to drink with its smooth and crisp taste. Very little hop presence (if any at all), but instead a pleasant wheat flavor dominates with a clean finish. Not amazingly complex but I believe true to the Kolsch style. If Pilsners and Weissbier are your thing, I think you might like this. Definately will make for good summer drinking.

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Photo of kenito799
4.27/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Pale golden with a foamy white head, leaves some lace. Very fresh, clean, almost lemony-grassy scent. The beer has a crsip clean bite that is wondeefully refreshing and indeed an excellent warm weather beer. The finish has a restrained but nicely crisp bitterness, with a whiff of tart apple-y fruit at the very end. The finish is quite long. I love the tartness, a great summer session beer, very well done.

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Photo of Caveworm
4.25/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Harpoon Summer Beer - Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall. Poured from the bottle into a becker pint glass, this brew's head is two fingers thick with web-like lacing, and a medium-light golden body.

Smells like very bright malts and earthy grains. Perhaps a touch of floral hops in the mix.

I taste much of the components described above, along with a mid-palate bite that goes away at the end of the swig. Clear and bright, overall.

The mouthfeel of this beer is crisp and refreshingly clean. A great summer choice indeed,

Overall, I'll give Harpoon Summer Beer - Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall a 4.25

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Photo of beernut7
4.25/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This was the staple of this year's Boston Marathon for my small group of fans. Pale yellow color and nice foamy head are inviting on a warm day. Light aroma and taste just heavy enough to give substance to the brew. Reminded me of summer squash. Easy drinking.

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Harpoon Summer Beer from Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
81 out of 100 based on 380 ratings.