Hate the Taste of Beer? Try these Five Brews

Wisfoodtalk thanks our guest contributor/author, Heather Rayne.    Heather is a wife, mother and lifelong Racine resident. She loves to write, watch TV, travel and eat (yes, eating can most certainly be a hobby – don’t judge). She is also a bit of a political nerd. You can occasionally find her on a boat floating in a lake somewhere during the summer months. And in the winter, she attempts hibernation. Mostly, she just loves her family – including her cats – and spending time relaxing and enjoying all the flavors of life.


I am not much of a beer guzzler. Not in the slightest, actually. I just never really developed a taste for it. And to be honest, I’m not a big drinker in general.   I even add ice and soda to my Moscato (yes, I am a cheap date – if you don’t count the lobster). So, for a long while, my little wine spritzer was quite adequate for me. Recently, however, I have discovered that my body has decided to rebel against wine. I feel so betrayed, body. And after all I have done for you! I am content going without alcohol 96ish% of the time. But once in a while, it’s nice to have a drink in a social setting or at dinner with my husband. This recent conundrum sent me on a bit of a journey to find something that is tasty, doesn’t have a lot of alcohol and isn’t crazy high in calories (I prefer to save my calories for food – all of the food). Below is a list of beers that this non-beer drinker has found to be quite yummy and hits the marks nicely. I hope you enjoy. Cheers, Heather.

Five Beers even a Beer Hater can Enjoy

1.    Sprecher Hard Ginger, Sprecher Brewing Co., Milwaukee, Wis, 4.7% ABV Sprecher hard ginger

This one is my newest find and, so far, my favorite. I love that sweet and spicy bite of ginger. And it really doesn’t taste like beer at all. Ginger is super good for you and it works as an anti-inflammatory – so I like to pretend I am doing something healthy when I have one. (Oh, let me have my delusions.)

2.   Stiegl Radler Grapefruit, Stieglbrauerei zu Salzburg, Austria 2.5% ABV stiegl-radler-grapefruit-sortiment-bier-flasche

Stiegl also makes a Lemon Radler which is also delightful. But I prefer the grapefruit as I have always been a Squirt fan. And basically this is half beer and half soda – so it is very much like drinking a Squirt with a little kick. It is mega low in alcohol so I can feel safe having a few without feeling cruddy later. This is very refreshing on a summer day. And summer IS almost here, right? RIGHT???  (Editors Note:  You can order this with the delicious food at Comet Cafe, Milwaukee)

3Michelob Ultra Lime Cactus, Anheuser-Busch, Missouri , 4.0% ABV,  95 Calories, 5.5g Carbs michelob-ultra-lime-cactus-light-beer

I am not really sure what cactus tastes like, but mixed with lime, I’m guessing pretty dang good. This beer is super light and smooth with no funky aftertaste. I have yet to try it with tacos, but I bet it would make a great pairing. Darnit. Now I want tacos.

4.   Michelob Ultra Light Cider, Anheuser-Busch, Missouri, 4.0% ABV, 120 Cal Michelob-ULTRA-Light-Cider-12-oz.-Bottle-e1336494350806

While the heaviest in the group, this is still lighter than most Cider Beers/Ales. After a single serving of Redd’s or Angry Orchard, I am ready for a good burp and a nap. This option is crisp, fruity and doesn’t leave you quite as bloated.

5.   Amstel Radler, Heineken, Netherlands, 2% ABV, 60 Calories Radler Ad 05_Amstel

I definitely like my radlers. This one is mixed with lemonade instead of soda and definitely hits the spot if you like sweet and tangy. It makes me think of a backyard cookout on a warm afternoon. Ahhhh.

Five must-try Wisconsin beers if you love Spotted Cow

Most of us love Spotted Cow, the best selling draft beer in the state of Wisconsin.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Glarus_Brewing_Company.  If you are not a craft beer follower, Spotted Cow maybe as far as you have imbibed in the world of Wisconsin craft beer.     If you like Spotted Cow, you probably will like these five Wisconsin beers, so give them a try and spread the Wisconsin love.

Our guest contributor is Benjamin Schultz, the on staff “beer guru” and assistant manager at Carriage House Liquor Co., 220 State Street, Racine.

Ben Schultz Bartender

Ben orders the beer and keeps the shelves stocked with “the good stuff.”   Carriage House stocks 340 kinds of beer as well as all kinds of liquor (really nice whiskey selection I might add).   What makes this liquor store stand out is the almost library-like atmosphere, with a small bar and a couple tables so you can enjoy your purchase in-house and maybe taste a few of the food items.   Beyond alcoholic beverages, what I found surprising is the array of interesting specialty food items they offer:  Elk jerky, Nueske’s bacon, Wisconsin cheeses, etc.

Carriage House Exterio2rcarriage house interior

Ben is Spotted Cow drinker and has developed a palate for exactly that type of exceptional and easy-to-swill Wisconsin beer.  So we asked him to give us five Wisconsin beers to try if we like Spotted Cow.

Beer Seller Ben’s Five Must-try Wisconsin Beers if you like Spotted Cow:

1.   Capital Maibock – The Madison-based, Capital Brewery, produces this seasonal Maibock for release February through May.   Ben says “the Maibock is lighter than the better-known Dopplebock, with a paler, more hopped version.  It has a similar look and easy beer taste like Spotted Cow, but finished on a much ‘hoppier’ note.”

Capital Maibock

2.  4 Brothers Prodigal Son – 4 Brothers is a Waukesha brewer/blender who produces this IPA and Cream Ale blend.  “The concept of blending beer is still relatively new, and creates some really fun flavors.  A balanced blend of citrusy hops and light airy smoothness creates for a hop forward ale.  Very similar to Spotted Cow with a taste of Cream Ale but has the enjoyable finish of a more hoppy ale.”

Prodigal Son 4 Brothers

3.   3 Sheeps Cirque du Wit 3 Sheeps Brewing in Sheboygan makes this “refreshing beer with a subtle sweetness and a multitude of wheat flavor.”  “These ingredients leave the palate with a definite soothing effect.  Similar to Spotted Cow in taste, but is a bit lighter with a hint of wheat.”

3 Sheeps Cirque de Wit

4.   Door County Little Sister Door County Brewing Company’s Little Sister is a “cloudy pale Belgian style ale.  It is brewed with equal parts Belgian Pilsner malt and wheat, and then finished with some spiced coriander and orange peel.   Similar in initial taste and appearance, Little Sister has more spice and citrus notes than Spotted Cow, as one would expect.”

Little Sister Door County 2

5.   MKE Brewing Booyah –   “With a very unique style and name that will stand out, Milwaukee Brewing Co’s Booyah, has a barley malt and wheat to create a smooth body and has a pleasant golden hue.  The malted rye and oats bring out a sold earthy flavor to round out the beer.  The only Saison in the group will give it a more grain-influenced taste, but overall similar to the Spotted Cow.”

Booyah MKE brewing

These five beers are among the 340 available at Carriage House, the selection is contained at beermenus.com, thanks for the list guys!