Thirsty Thursday: Ranking the Top 10 Craft Beer Releases of the Week

Matthew JohnsonSeptember 24, 2020
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Can we really enjoy a fall beer when it’s still forecasted to be 107 degrees this weekend? Perhaps if you’re sitting outside at nine o’clock at night! Here’s the top ten beers to seek out this weekend for that post sundown bliss on the patio.

1. Double Pumpkin Porter from Four Peaks (Tempe)

For the first time ever, Four Peaks is doing this annual release in bottled six-packs (available Thursday for $14). A silky smooth and stronger version of the fall classic, Double Pumpkin Porter is a yearly pilgrimage for most Four Peaks fans.

2. Weedy’s Rad Idea from Dark Sky (Flagstaff)

A pumpkin milkshake IPA? Yes, please! This wild concoction is the brain child of Weedy Weidenthal, the head brewer at Tombstone and friend of the crew at Dark Sky. Brewed with pumpkin spice and milk sugar, Dark Sky has hinted it will be available soon on draft and in cans. We’re keeping an eye out for this one.

3. Creativity Is Exhausting from The Beer Research Institute (Mesa)

Hopheads are ready to embrace this strong 8.7% ABV, 108 IBU double west coast IPA. B.R.I is releasing this latest palate-buster on Friday in four-pack cans and on draft.

4. Point of Convergence from Simple Machine Brewing (Phoenix)

This hazy IPA is the collaborative work of Simple Machine and small up-and-comer Kitsune Brewing out of Cave Creek. Point of Convergence comes at you with notes of mango, citrus and pine and tropical berry on the nose. It was brewed in a relatively small batch, so get it on draft or in cans while you can.

5. Peppercorn Saison & Naranja Loca from 1912 Brewing (Tucson)

Two new offerings that make you pucker up with excitement! Naranja Loca is Spanish for “crazy orange” and it’s the latest Mexican candy sour release from 1912. Available in crowlers and growlers to go. The 4.2% ABV farmhouse style Peppercorn Saison is ready on draft. Toma Way, a non-fruited gose, is also new this week.

6. The Hefe Is a Pirate from 8-Bit Aleworks (Avondale)

A barrel-aged apple pie wheat wine sounds like a perfect after dinner dessert drink to enjoy later in the evening. If you agree, try to get your hands on a bottle to take home this week.

7. Lady Banks from Wren House (Phoenix)

Friday is a triple-beer release day at Wren House. Lady Banks rose gose, Monte Vista saison and Mandatory Casual Fridays DIPA will be available to pick up from the brewery. Lady Banks is brewed with dried rose petals and won’t be around again until the spring.


Smelter Town Brewery opened earlier this week in the small town of Clarkdale, AZ (east of Jerome). The brewery sits inside a 105-year-old building on Main Street and features a copper top bar where customers can pull up a chair. The beer menu features a hefeweizen, stout and ale. It’s worth a day trip to visit Smelter Town and learn about the history of Clarkdale.

9. Mission to Marzen at Historic Brewing (Flagstaff)

We have a couple more weekends of trying to escape the triple-digit heat in the Valley and, for many, Flagstaff hiking trails are calling our names. Grabbing a post-hike beer from Historic is often part of that day trip for this author, and this 4.8% ABV Oktoberfest style brew might just be my mission this weekend.

10. Oktoberfest and a pretzel from Helluva (Chandler)

Even though Oktoberfest got cancelled in Munich and Tempe Town Lake, it lives on in spirit at the Helluva brewpub in Chandler.


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