Summer Solstice | Anderson Valley Brewing Company

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Summer SolsticeSummer Solstice
Summer SolsticeSummer Solstice

Brewed by:
Anderson Valley Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Cream Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
Also known as Summer Solstice Cerveza Crema

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.

User Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 503 | Ratings: 1,621
Photo of IronLover
3.75/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Dark orange in color with a heavy haze. Poured with a moderate, off white foam with medium retention. Honestly, looks like a pumpkin ale. Bready and sweet malt aromas with sweet caramel notes. Bo hop aromas. Medium bodied with medium carbonation and lightly smooth feel. Caramel malty and bready flavors followed by medium low, lightly tart, hop bitterness. Light earthy hop and caramel flavors on the back end. Finished light bready notes followed by lingering caramel malt and mellow hop bitterness. A very unique beer. Can't say I could compare this to anything I've tried. Malty, and on the sweet side, but nicely balanced by moderate hop bitterness.

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Photo of izraelc
3.75/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Not sure I've ever tasted a beer quite like this. Pours a clear amber. Smells and tastes more like an autumn beer. Malty and creamy. Goes down smooth. Not my first choice for a warm summer day but it'll do.

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Photo of MaltyMagic
3.84/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Was one of my favorites when cutting my teeth into the craft beer world, nearly 20 years ago. Great gateway beer.

Clear amber, whipped egg nog head with good retention, sticky lace. Big vanilla, caramel, grain, apricot, cinnamon, nutmeg, almond, earth. Frothy, refreshing feel, finishes dry with some lingering grain. Unique and easy to drink.

More of an autumn flavor profile, but drinks like a summer beer should.

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Photo of Corkykab
3/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I’ve given neutral ratings, 3 across the board, because I can appreciate the quality of a style of brew which I typically avoid. I was given a case of this beer by a friend, and have slowly made my way through it. It’s a rich, aromatic ale, but quite frankly much too sweet for my taste. And of course this doesn’t make it a bad brew, just not my cup of tea. Give me a Pilsner Urquell, Tsingtao, or, as an alternative to this style of beer, although they’re not really similar at all, Guinness Extra Stout... love this site! Recently discovered it, and I’m hooked...

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Photo of I_Make_Pens
1/5  rDev -73%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

If you like pumpkin spice lattes, then this is the beer for you. If you like real beer, avoid this label. I should have known better when I saw that the label read, "ale with natural flavor added." I'm not sure if you can return beer, but if you could this would be the one to send back. I had to force myself just to finish one bottle.

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Photo of chitoryu12
3.7/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Look: Clear copper with a large, foamy white head.

Smell: Sweet, spicy, slightly yeasty malt. Faint vanilla and citrus.

Taste: Noticeable mild vanilla with a bitter undertone, leading into biscuit-like malt.

Mouthfeel: Slightly too thin, with high carbonation.

Overall: Pretty good for a session beer, but I'd like a bolder ale flavor.

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Photo of Brutaltruth
3.94/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the 12 oz can in a pint glass. This solid cream ale pours
a rich medium dark amber with a very nice head of white foam that
settles to a thick ring and thin layer with excellent soapy lacing. Nose
of light cream elements with a hint of orange and subtle herbal notes.
Flavors hit the right note with faint vanilla and light orange awash in
a mild cream nite with light grains and very light herbal hops on the rear
of the taste. Excellent Mouth feel; medium light body, high crush-ability
factor, medium light carbonation, and a lightly sweet clean finish.

Overall, everything to love and nothing to hate. An excellent
summer ale.


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Photo of nicholas2121
4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Summer Solstice brewed by Anderson Valley Brewing Company, with an ABV of 5.00% This Cream Ale pours out a deep golden almost brown color with a nice small white head. This cream ale was poured in a paint beer glass. Really digging the copper color of this brew. There is also some nice spotty lacing to this brew, it sticks to the side of the glass well. The smell is rich with mild sweetness, with grians and malts. You also pick up on some mild hop bitterness in the smell as well. Between the look an smell this is one inviting brew. Now for the taste, it is Bold with flavors. You first pick up on a nice amount of grains falled by malts. Then to some it all up the mild hop bitterness. The body of Summer Solstice is a solid medium. There is nothing overpowering about this brew, it has a super nice balance to. I like how smooth this brew goes down. This brew would go nice with dinner. The mouth feel is Bold, Bright, Clean, Smooth and Refreshing. Overall I am going to give Summer Solstice a soild 4 out of 5. I would definitely look this brew up again giving the opportunity to. Anderson Valley Brewing Company, did a real nice job with this brew.

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Photo of Try-em-all
3.88/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

While this is a good one caramel and color little on the darker side than I would have expected pretty good had about a finger and a half some slight lacing you definitely get the caramel on the nose little bit of spice little bit of bread e-notes and reminds me of something I will start to drink in fall great transition beer into the Oktoberfest time.

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Photo of PA-hunter
3.68/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured 12oz bottle into snifter glass. 5.0% abv

Appearance- Dark amber/copper. Lofty white head with moderate lacing. Translucent.

Smell- Loads of caramel, bready malt, cinnamon.

Taste- Sweet, bready malt. Lightly toasted flavor. Caramel malts dominate, mixing with the bread flavors. Finishes clean with ample spicing and hints of vanilla. Cinnamon and ginger round off the finish.

Mouthfeel- Medium in body with medium carbonation.

Overall- A more richer bodied, caramel malt brew. Shares some characteristics with an Oktoberfest as far as the malt base goes. Fitting for a beer celebrating the Summer Solstice. When Fall is approaching. I think this beer got me ready to start drinking some Oktoberfests straight from Bavaria.

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Photo of BB1313
3.8/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12oz can poured into a tulip. Pours copper with a subtle haze; fluffy off-white/light khaki head that fades leaving nice retention and lacing. The aromas are full of sweet malts. Some butter cream. Vanilla is there with some hints of caramel and toffee. Corn is there. The flavors basically follow the nose. More vanilla, caramel and toffee. Solid malt backbone. It's slightly sweet, but remains refreshing. Alcohol goes completely unnoticed. Mouthfeel is on the fuller side of light-bodied with moderate carbonation. It's fluffy, smooth and very easy to drink.

This is a nice cream ale. It's straight forward, but slightly unique. Enjoyable stuff. I like it.

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Photo of BlackBeerPirate
2.1/5  rDev -43.2%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Taste: hint of sweet caramel sugars, mild and rather thin and watery. Mild nose of malt. Golden in color, clear, but decent nitro head with some lace. Very lite body. Only a hint of cream soda beer. 5 IBUs

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Photo of hof_1991
3.8/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

On tap at our local gastropub. Light and sweet, very sessionable. Pale, with a full head. Not a lot of powerful flavors but very pleasant with food.

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Photo of IchLiebeBier
3.71/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pretty good overall. Although the aroma was subdued the flavor was pretty tasty. This would be a good beer to have on hand during camping trips. I'll definitely look for it again.

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Photo of Everydayoff
3.79/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

On-tap served in a pint glass at O’glee, Bangkok.

Mildly hazed copper amber hue with thick creamy off-white head that stays with good retention before slowly collapsing to a long-lasting bubble sheet on the surface and leaving lots of lacing patch and spot.

Cream soda, vanilla, sweet caramel, biscuit, slight toasted, earthy hop, and some mild fruit, all of these scents are presented in quite balance way.

The taste is still cream soda together with sweet, caramel, vanilla, biscuit, some earthiness and subtle sour fruitiness. Rich malty as a base that is nicely decorated by all the other flavors.

Medium body with good crispness and nicely smooth mouthfeel, moderate lively carbonation that carries all the things well, finish is dry.

Malt is a backbone here while the addition of natural flavor makes it sweet and creamy like a dessert drink.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
3.39/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

This was kind of the wave of new beers from Anderson Valley after a decade or more of nothing new entering the lineup it seemed. Golden beer, ample clarity, 1/3" white head, it struggled with retention. Aroma was mild grain and not much else.

Taste, a smooth affair, low bitterness and hopping, appropriate for style. Pretty cool stuff as it isn't lacking in malt, but is easy to drink and not heavy or offputting on a warm day.

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Photo of Marius
3.29/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

33cl botle. Clear amber pour with a thin tan head. Green hops and wet copper in the nose. The taste is bitter, with notes of red berries and citrus, as well as some cantaloupe melon.

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Photo of vette2006c5r
3.63/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Summer Solstice pours a hazy dark copper color with a big lacing head. Sweet and earthy aroma. The flavor is strong, hints of earth with a sweet candy finish. Good body and feel. Overall, solid.: Sweeter.

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Photo of Ciocanelu
3.6/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Amber color with beige head. Aroma is quite malty with a slight hint of fruit acidity reminding a bit of cider. Taste is mainly malty with some fresh baked bread crust and some grains. It's just slightly sweet at first and finishes with a hint of earthy hops. Medium to light body with medium carbonation. Overall it's quite interesting style of beer. Malty but not really sweet, easy drinking and light on the palate.

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Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.86/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Burnt orange color with more purple tints toward the middle of the tulip, a billowy cream colored head with 2 fingers of height. 70% opaque.

Sweet, bready notes on the nose, with hints of pale malt and graham cracker. Faint, but what's there is solid.

A tea-like bitterness matches a rich, sweet creamy flaky dough maltiness with dashes of herbs and spices in between. Some warm sweet potato, complete with brown sugar and butter, maybe dashed with rosemary is sampled. I could actually use a touch more sweetness, that would really bring it full swing for me.

Feel is very creamy, and very tightly carbonated at the same time. A wet finish wraps things up.

Overall - I'm torn on whether I would have preferred to buy a six pack; if I did I wouldn't have regretted it, but I'm not unhappy with my choice of two cans. It's a very solid cream ale. Not the best, but not shabby by any stretch. I'd have it again, it's a good time for sure.

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Photo of Guppy314
3.53/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

From a can, pours a clear reddish gold with creamy thin white head. Malt-forward with caramel and some butterscotch flavors. Decent carbonation with a smooth medium mouth feel. Kind of like a cream soda without the sweetness. Very drinkable.

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Photo of stevoj
3.08/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Despite it’s darker body, this is a light and easy drinker for the summer months. Very lightly hopped, with some caramel/toffee sweetness. A mixture of an amber, a brown ale and some German dunkel. Interesting combo.

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Photo of Ruger_44-Redhawk
4.45/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Drinking this at the St. Paul Rodeo in Oregon on this nation's birthday. I like the all natural spice and this isn't like other flavored beers that are so syrupy that you can't have more than one. I really enjoy this beer. I've always considered this to be the cream soda of beers. I get Madagascar vanilla, caramel, cream, a little roasted malt, spice and a little almond. Even though I'm an Imperial anything guy, this is one of the best summer beers out there. And their Winter Ale is just as good.

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Photo of Dragginballs76
3.52/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours - deep copper color thin off white head not much lacing.

Smell - Wheat and hay, sweet malt little bit of spice and some caramel.

Taste - Sort of sweet flavor, sweet malts, caramel, raisin.

Feel - medium body, the sweetness makes it have an odd after taste.

Overall - An ok beer little too sweet for me.

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Photo of Act25
2.96/5  rDev -20%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

What beer drinker wants a root beer or a cream soda?!?!?

I dislike flavored, sweetened coffees as much as most flavored beers. If I want cola, root soda, or lemonade or any other kind of fruit essence or juice in my beer - why would I not add it myself?!?!?!

A) A cloudy red-orange amber with nearly no head or lacing.
S) Aroma is cream soda and ballantine with red grape.
T) Tastes treacly, toasty, toffee and sickly sweet caramel with few hints of fruit
F) Feels woody and clumsy/cloying with no hop bitterness. I dont get this for summer, it's sweet, thin, light winter brew.... Pass.

I enjoyed Vode's characterization though I don't dislike this as vehemently. Still, not a go-to brew.

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Summer Solstice from Anderson Valley Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.7 out of 5 with 1,621 ratings