Well summer is fully upon us and most of us spend at least some time in the sweltering heat mowing our yards. I know I have, however it has gotten a lot easier this year with the addition of my Father’s old Cub Cadet riding mower. Yes, we were mowing and caring for 2.5 acres with a weed mower and a lawn mower for the past 9 summers.
One thing that really struck my eye on this new mower was the fact that it has a cup holder! So I immediately ran out and picked up a four pack of New Belgium Ranger IPA tall boys. They fit perfectly, but the first time I tried to use it I found out there was a problem. See the cup holder is on the back fender, where all the grass clippings shoot out of the mowing deck. Good in theory, but a design flaw for sure. Of course this wouldn’t be a problem if I had the bagging attachment which my Dad used, however the top to said attachment has been forever lost in the Galligan abyss known as my Mom’s garage.
So for now I am stuck either trying to mulch the lawn or to do the side discharge, and since I am a once a week mower, the mulcher is pretty much out of the question, so no drinking and mowing for me, however I do work up a good thirst while I am out there, and like to come in for a refreshing beer once I hit a break.
That said I thought up these 3 qualities of a good lawn mower beer:
- It must be light in color. Nothing weighs you down while working like a roasty malty beer. No, for me I like a nice IPA or Pilsner, or perhaps like my brother Jim, a Summer Shandy.
- It should be in a can. Now there is wiggle room here, because there are some fine lawn mowing beers that only come in bottles, but a can has a good low center of gravity and won’t go flying out of the cup holder on those hairpin turns. If you only have bottles, slow down while turning.
- It should be below 6% ABV. I have already built in the wiggle room into the 6% so nothing over this number. When you are mowing the lawn, chances are you are doing so in the daylight hours, unless you have a lighted mower like I do and then you can night mowing, you know…in case you live in Arizona. But for most of us lawn mowing is about a 8am to 5pm activity (Except for my neighbor who feels the need to mow his yard every Saturday at F@#&#ing 7am). You might have to take a break and go pick up some groceries or a kid from soccer or something of that sort. You don’t want a beer that will make getting into a car a problem for you and the popo. Thus 6% is a max. I prefer my lawn mower beers in the 4.5%-5.5% range.
For me I like the aforementioned Ranger IPA. I also like a summer shandy, but it only comes in bottles, so it is a lesser beer in my eyes for lawn mowing. A new favorite of mine might be Payette Brewing’s Pale Ale. This is a local brewery from Boise that just released two of their beers in cans last week, the Pale and their Mutton Bustin’ Brown, both very tasty, but the Pale meets the color requirement. Finally, Sierra Nevada Pale Ale was first released in cans about 6 months ago, and meets all my requirements and is just a great all around beer.
Those are mine, what are some of your favorite lawn mower brews? Let us know in the comments.