Yes you can can

The best canned beers for beating the heat.

Summer in Florida is officially here. We celebrate the longer days and sweltering nights by gathering poolside or on the beach, floating on the river or cruising on the boat. And along with the sunscreen and mosquito repellent, a must-pack item is good summer craft beer.

Fortunately, many of the best beers for summer are now available in cans, which suits outdoor adventures well. Canned beers are lighter, keep beer fresher, and are generally safer than bottles.

Many beaches and pools actually ban glass entirely, since the last thing you want near bare feet is broken glass. The choices of canned craft beer are growing all the time, so here are some picks to beat the heat.

Yes, the old standby Samuel Adams Boston Lager is now available in a custom-designed can. The refreshing and consistently drinkable lager can go just about anywhere and pairs well with most cookout menus.

Cans of Sam Adams' summer ale were recently released as well, so look for those at your local craft beer store.

The sustainability-minded folks at Sierra Nevada know all about the benefits of cans, and the flagship Pale Ale is the perfect candidate for the preferred packaging. The fresh crispness of the hops really is captured in the can. The Pale Ale is particularly good on hot, steamy days when you want good flavor but not the higher alcohol (Pale Ale is only 5.6 percent) of other pale ales or IPAs.

Want something a bit stronger and bigger? Sierra Nevada’s Torpedo Extra IPA is available in 16-ounce cans sold in four-packs.

Kona Brewing’s Longboard Island Lager brings liquid aloha in a can. Few things say summertime more than visions of surfing and the sound of waves on the beach. The medal-winning lager from the Hawaiian brewery should be enjoyed while tending the grill, watching the sunset, or dancing in a grass skirt around a luau.

Not a pilsner fan? Fear not, grab a Dale’s Pale Ale for a mouthful of hoppiness and enjoy “America’s first hand-canned craft beer." Avery White Rascal Belgian Wheat Ale — in a can? Yes, this Belgian-style wheat now comes in a can. White Rascal is unfiltered (yes, there will be yeast in the bottom) and spiced with coriander and Curaçao orange peel, giving it a unique and fresh flavor.

Other offerings in the cans from Avery include Joe’s Premium American Pilsner, Ellie’s Brown Ale, and India Pale Ale. Cigar City Hotter Than Helles’ can reads, “No peppers, just puns.” The Munich Helles Lager (Helles simply means “bright”) was the Germans’ response to the increasingly popular Pilsner lagers coming out of Czechoslovakia.

With a clever play on words from Cigar City, the Tampa brewery has created a refreshing — but complex — take on the classic style. With a light floral hoppiness and the sweet malts indicative of the style, this hometown brew is made with summer in mind.

Need more? Not only are Jai Alai IPA, Florida Cracker Wit, and Madura Brown available, but soon you will be able to find Tocobaga Red, Invasion Pale Ale, Humidor Series IPA, and Jose Marti American Porter in cans as well.

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