Summer is here, and along with its longer, warmer days, the season brings a multitude of opportunities to kick back with friends and enjoy the buzzing lightning bugs. Picnics, potlucks, and parties abound, with grills sizzling every evening and an abundance of opportunities to splash about in the pool. Summer parties often mean cracking open a cold one, and whether or not you’re out of college, imbibing with your friends often means partaking in a couple rounds of a drinking game.

While some may claim to have outgrown it, there’s no doubt that the undisputed king of drinking games is a good, low maintenance round of beer pong.

Beer pong may seem like a party foul, especially the further away from your college days you get. Considering the games popularity and easy set-up, it would be a mistake to consign it to the house party days of yore. However, there are a few ways to make the frat favorite a little more grown up, from swapping PBR for craft beer to opting for glitzy prosecco pong instead. According to new research, 76.5% of men and 68.5% of women prefer craft beer over cheap brews, leading us to think that perhaps the best way to get your more “mature” friends to join in for a round might be breaking out the smaller batch beers.

Here are 7 craft beers reminiscent of summer that are sure to make your beer pong tournament a little more classy.

Fresh Squeezed IPA, Deschutes Brewery


One of Deschutes’ most popular brews, this IPA layers grapefruit and other citrus flavors over hops to create a bright, sweet IPA. Fresh Squeezed is a classic of this West Coast brewery that is looking to expand east, and considering nothing says summer like citrus, this beer is sure to bring the beachy vibes to your backyard.


S’More Stout, Shorts Brewing Co.

What says “summer” more than the old childhood cookout classic, s’mores? There’s an easy way to enjoy the tasty treat without stepping away from the beer pong table: Shorts’ smoky stout. Combining all the flavors we know and love into a creamy beer, this brew is sure to be a favorite whether you’re kicking back by the campfire or in your buddy’s apartment.

Hibiscus Gose, Boulevard Brewing Co.


The jury is still out on whether goses - a sour, German-style beer with floral or fruity notes - count as “craft” beers, but these tangy ales will find their way into your heart, especially considering the hot weather. Boulevard Brewing Co.’s Hibiscus Gose combines the saltier notes of a traditional gose with the tea-like quality of the hibiscus. This ale has the added benefit of being a dark pink color, a result of the hibiscus flower steeping.


Sunshine Pils, Tröegs Independent Brewing

The golden tones of this pilsner might fool your guests into thinking that it’s the crappy beer of frat house olde, but the lemon-tinged lager is anything but basic. The brew is light and goes down smooth - a real benefit when you’re chugging solo cups full of it after sinking shots at the beer pong table.

(photo from Tröegs Independent Brewing)

Sweet Heat, Burnside Brewing Co.


Spicy beers have been picking up in popularity, and this wheat-based ale is no exception. It blends Scotch bonnet chiles with apricot puree for a festive drink that’s reminiscent of tropical chutneys. The warm, bright brew is a great way to add a unique twist to your game of beer pong.

Aloha Sculpin, Ballast Point


Tropical beers are the name of the summer brew game, and this award-winning IPA is no exception. Pineapple, mango, and guava layered over brux trois yeast create an unforgettable pale ale. Ballast Point has various flavors of sculpin if tropical isn’t your - or your guests’ - thing.

Savannah Banana Cervas, Service Brewing Co.


This Georgia-based beer draws inspiration from Mexican flavors, with smooth banana notes and a pale twist at the end. The light, crisp taste makes this a perfect brew for a sticky summer night.

No matter how long ago your college party days were, beer pong remains a classic drinking game. Whether you choose to go with a classic beer style or something a little more adventurous, your summer party guests will thank you for shaking up a round of beer pong with a craft brew, and you’ll feel classier with every ball you sink and sip you take.