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10 beers we're looking forward to sipping on this fall

Boston.com logo Boston.com 9/16/2020 Erin Kuschner
a bowl of fruit sitting on top of a wooden table: Sweater Weather at Lamplighter Brewing Co. © Lamplighter Brewing Co. Sweater Weather at Lamplighter Brewing Co.

Let’s get this out of the way: This won’t be your typical New England fall.

Salem’s Halloween season, for example, has been dramatically pared back, and socially distanced apple picking will have a decidedly different feel.

But fall beers? Those are still on the menu. Making the transition from crisp summer ales to fall-centric brews, Boston-area breweries are coming out with cider-beer hybrids, malted milk ball porters, and hefty IPAs to keep us cozy as the temperature dips.

Some of these fall beers are out now, and some will be released in the near future, but all of them are squarely on our radar for drinking options this season. Order a few cans or bottles to support the local breweries that have been helping us stay hydrated, and let us know in the comments what additional beers you’re looking forward to drinking over the next few months.

a close up of a bottle and a glass of wine: First Thanksgiving on a Sour Planet from Aeronaut. © Provided by Boston.com First Thanksgiving on a Sour Planet from Aeronaut.

First Thanksgiving on a Sour Planet at Aeronaut Brewing Co.

Aeronaut has released First Thanksgiving each fall for the past few years, but this is the first year that the Somerville brewery will release it in cans. Made with cinnamon and apples, the tart ale is a cozy homage to apple pie. Find it online at Aeronaut’s online shop a couple weeks leading up to Thanksgiving.

Look for it: November

Mid Century Mild at Dorchester Brewing Co.

This newcomer from Dorchester Brewing is brewed in the style of a British mild, a sessionable dark brown beer that, some say, is making a comeback in the craft beer world. Dorchester’s Mid Century Mild comes in at a breezy 4.5 percent ABV, with notes of caramel and chocolate rounding out the full-flavored beer.

Look for it: October 1

Just a Kitten at Exhibit ‘A’ Brewing Co.

Fans of Exhibit ‘A”s The Cat’s Meow may take a liking to its sibling, Just a Kitten, which was released in early September. Light and refreshing, it’s brewed with Citra, Mosaic, and Vic Secret hops, and hits drinkers with a peachy orange flavor and a hint of malt. Like the can art? That’s the handiwork of local artist Isabella Lopez.

Look for it: Out now

a close up of a bottle: South of Satan’s Kingdom: The Return at Harpoon Brewery. © Provided by Boston.com South of Satan’s Kingdom: The Return at Harpoon Brewery.

South of Satan’s Kingdom 2: The Return at Harpoon Brewery

Four Star Farms in Northfield — located south of Satan’s Kingdom in Western Mass. — provides the Centennial wet hops used to make this beer, now in its second year. The hoppy pale ale has notes of citrus and pine, and smells like grapefruit zest, sage, and oats. Find it for a limited time in select New England markets.

Look for it: Out now

Willow at Idle Hands Craft Ales

Each year, Malden-based Idle Hands releases an anniversary beer inspired by the traditional wedding anniversary gift. For this year’s ninth anniversary — which is usually associated with pottery and willow — the brewery is releasing Willow, a tropical and piney West Coast IPA that will be released in cans at the end of September. “2020 has been a year like no other, so we thought it was a good idea to bring back a style of beer that got so many people into the world of craft beer,” said Josh Deering, social media and marketing manager at Idle Hands. “We cannot wait to open a can to celebrate the past nine years and the many more years to come.”

Look for it: September 30

Sweater Weather at Lamplighter Brewing Co.

It’s the best of both worlds: Cambridge’s Lamplighter Brewing recently released a cider-beer hybrid called Sweater Weather, a collaboration with Vermont’s Shacksbury Cidery. To make the delightful mashup, a full-bodied saison was blended with 275 gallons of dry apple cider, resulting in notes of tart apple, cloves, nutmeg, and lemon zest.

Look for it: Out now

a close up of a bottle and a glass of orange juice: Phone Home at Night Shift Brewing. © Provided by Boston.com Phone Home at Night Shift Brewing.

Phone Home at Night Shift Brewing

This limited release favorite just hit Night Shift’s taproom, with cans slated to hit shelves in late September. Inspired by E.T.’s favorite snack, Reese’s Pieces, the peanut butter porter contains notes of roasted hazelnut, peanut butter bites, and dark chocolate — a satisfying way to slide into Halloween season.

Look for it: Out now

Malted Milk Ball Porter at Springdale Beer Co.

Love Union Square Donuts? Springdale’s collaboration with the doughnut purveyor might be right up your alley. The Framingham brewery and Somerville-based doughnut shop teamed up to create this luscious porter, which uses malt syrup to connect the flavors of the beer and sweet pastry, and is aiming for a release date around October 12.

Look for it: Mid-October

John’s Lager at Turtle Swamp Brewing

Light, floral, and slightly bitter, John’s Lager is a Czech-style pilsner that uses 100 percent Czech hops and malt, and is allowed to lager for a month before packaging. Turtle Swamp founder and brewer Nicholas Walther said he hopes it will become a new standard at the brewery. “This is our second time making this beer,” he shared. “The first time was a resounding success (we sold out in two weeks!), so we’ve brewed twice as much and look forward to making this beer year round.”

Look for it: Mid-September

Lion’s Galaxy Double IPA at White Lion Brewing Co.

White Lion will open a brand new taproom in downtown Springfield next month, and to commemorate the occasion, the brewery will release a couple new beers, including Lion’s Galaxy Double IPA. Founder Ray Berry told Boston.com that the brewery is “doubling down on its flagship IPA Lion’s Galaxy” with the new beer, and calls the 8.5 percent ABV brew “a gem with copious amounts Galaxy, Citra, and Mosaic hops.” Find Lion’s Galaxy Double IPA in 16-ounce cans and on draft at White Lion.

Look for it: October

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