Sam Adams in a Can

With summer finally here to stay, craft beer cans are getting a lot of attention. And not just from me.

Two recent articles highlight the rapid growth in the number of craft breweries that are canning their beer. Locally, Washington Post beer writer Greg Kitsock wrote in his article Beer in cans keeps stacking up that Lost Rhino (Ashburn, VA), Heavy Seas (Baltimore, MD), and Devil’s Backbone (Lexington, VA) were all introducing beer in cans. And DC Brau has doubled the number of its canned offerings. describes how Beer cans make a comeback — apparently, “Canned beer is so retro cool, the big brands want in.” Most notably, Sam Adams has released Boston Lager and Summer Ale in the innovative Sam Can, which features a larger opening and extended lip to bring out the beer’s full flavor. Boston Beer Company founder Jim Koch made quite an investment — the Sam Can took two years and $1 million+ in R&D to bring to market.

Even those who might still turn up their noses at the thought of beer in a can have to appreciate that kind of effort.

Our pool, with its “no bottles” policy, opened over Memorial Day Weekend and I was prepared with 12-packs of Boston Lager and Summer Ale Sam Cans. I found them on the beer shelves at the Harris Teeter in Arlington.

Sam Adams in a Can

Other canned craft beer we’ve already tried this summer:

  • Starr Hill Northern Lights IPA (Charlottesville, Virginia, 6.5%)
  • Fat Tire Amber Ale, New Belgium Brewing (Fort Collins, Colorado, 5.2%)
  • Under Dog Atlantic Lager,  Flying Dog Brewery (Frederick, Maryland, 4.7%)

And the summer is just getting started!

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