Session IPAs Are the Diet Coke of Beer

It's time to crush this toothless beer category.

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I just attended the Great American Beer Festival this weekend. It was great, as the name implies. It always is. (The only things that suck are: how many people get shut out of buying tickets, too many drunken idiots stepping on my foot, Uber surge pricing within 15 miles of the convention center, and my tongue’s inability to taste tastes after two hours.) One piece of news that preceded the fest was the introduction of a hotly-debated category, Session India Pale Ale. And here’s the deal: Fuck session IPAs.

If you’re a beer enthusiast, you know I’m not the first person to take this stance. But add my voice to the correct side of history in saying, this trendy market segment has gone too far. It must be stopped. Session IPAs are like diet sodas and diet soda has no real point. Neither do session IPAs.

Not only do they have the dumbed-down, mock hoppy flavor of IPAs, they don’t have the alcoholic weight. Whenever I’m drinking one, I feel like I’m eating brown rice with no cheese on a Chipotle burrito or flying on Spirit Airlines. Shit ain’t right. (If you must drink a session India pale ale, check out this list. Hold a bullet-less gun to my head and I’ll take a Pinner or Easy Jack.)

So, brave beer drinkers, I offer a solution. Switch hit. There are plenty of fantastic lagers that have low ABVs. Pop one of those into your rotation while you’re at a concert or at the ballgame. Hell, get some light, mass-produced brews going while you’re at it. At least they’re honest about what they’re supposed to be — easy-drinking, refreshing, and low in alcohol.

Miller Light sucks but Miller Light owns being a beer you can drink all day without getting totally crunk. Here’s what part of my Sunday looked like, watching some NFL games: Coors Light, Coors Light, Coors Light, Dogfish Head 90 Minute, New Belgium Ranger, Coors Light, I forget, nachos, Coors Light, whatever stop judging me, Coors Light. So, raise a glass of a real man’s IPA (or, that’s right, a PBR) and join the revolution. We can make session IPAs go the way of a Dodo that ate too much Olestra Lays while drinking OK Soda.

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