Beer for Yogis. ~ Sarah Ongiri

Via elephant journal
on Aug 13, 2012
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Yoga and microbrews are two of my biggest interests.

Though they appear unrelated on the surface, I often think about how I can bring them together. And sometimes it happens on its own.

Here’s a list of five yoga related microbrews. If you know of any others, comment below!

1. Namaste by Dogfish Head Craft Brewery ABV 5.0% Witbeir

This is a nice summery beer that is relatively widely available as Dogfish Head continues to grow in popularity. I was recently at Red Robin and was surprised to find a Dogfish brew on draft! Yummmmm.

Namaste translates from Sanskrit to mean “I bow to you.”

Let the Dogfish humble you with this lovely brew.


Photo courtesy of

2. Arbor Brewing Bavarian Bliss Hefeweizen ABV 5.6%

This is another lighter flavored beer. Great for summer or for cooling off after a hot yoga class. No better way to reach for that bliss then a nice sip of this light bodied beer. Nice.


3. Baby Tree by Pretty Things Beer and Ale Project 9% ABV quadrupel

One of the most iconic yoga poses is widely known as Tree pose (Vrksasana—that’s Sanskrit, bitches) and when I saw this pretty bottle at my beer store I knew it had to be mine.

This is a much heftier beer than the previous two I mentioned. It pours a lovely dark reddish color and smells slightly sweet. It has a nice ABV of 9% and comes in a 22 ounce bottle. I recommend sharing the bottle or splitting it over two days. Nice “night cap” beer for these late summer nights.


4. Java Sutra Coffee Porter by Three Heads Brewing—American Porter 6.5% ABV

The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali is a classic text that serves as a how to book for reaching enlightenment.

3HB’s Java Sutra Coffee Porter combine two of my favorite things—rich porter and espresso. Sadly, I haven’t been able to get my hands on this beer yet but with a Beer Advocate rating of 85, I’m thinking it will be well worth it when I do.


5. Liquid Sunshine Blonde Ale by Hoppy Brewing Company—American Blonde Ale 5.0% ABV

So in my first post I mentioned my favorite beer store Abe’s. Right across the street from my house is a slightly sketchy deli that also sells beer. It was famous in my high school days as the spot to go to buy beer if you were underage. New owners cleaned the place up and no illegal beer purchases are happening there, but the atmosphere remains somewhat sketchy. That being said, sometimes after a late yoga class I just want to run into a spot with less options in front of me. Nine times out of ten, I walk out with a bottle of this happy beer.

Anyone who has gone to a yoga class has completed at least one Sun Salutation (Surya Namaskara). The Ashtanga primary series includes up to ten.

Liquid sunshine is the beer form of Surya Namaskara. So go out there and salute the sun my friends.

As an aside—beer after yoga and never before! It will end all kinds of bad, I promise you. Oh and this may be obvious, but beer does not rehydrate the body after an intense practice or run. That’s what coconut water is for!

As Always,

Namaste, Bitches!

Sarah Ongiri is a mom, runner, beer lover and yogi currently finishing her 200 hour certification at Lehigh Valley Yoga. She blogs at and have been published nationally and locally.




Editor: ShaMecha Simms

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22 Responses to “Beer for Yogis. ~ Sarah Ongiri”

  1. Kathleen says:

    "Namaste, Bitches!" Really?!

  2. @Yogi_Scott says:

    But all the cool kids are sayin' it!

  3. stella says:

    Yeah, I was into this list until the end. No need to call me a bitch, seriously.

  4. runyogabeer says:

    Not intended to offend. This came about because my non yogi sister would always whisper this to me at the end of the classes I dragged her to with me. Just meant to be funny seriously and remind myself not to take things too seriously….

  5. Edward Staskus says:

    Am I missing something? Will I get it if I drink several-or-more of these brews?

  6. Ramani says:

    MM.I used to drink alot. And do a lot of "yoga". Unfortunately I never thought the two went together at all and it was always grating to me and I knew I had to eventually give up one or the other, which has since happened. In fact beer is utterly tamasic which goes against the ENTIRE yoga system which aims at creating sattvic quality of mind. Hopefully they'll teach you that in your "yoga teacher" training. Please stop bastardizing this science to look cool on elephant journal. Thanks.

  7. runyogabeer says:

    I don't agree or disagree but what I can say is that ayurvedic science which is yoga's sister science does not bar drinking alcohol in moderation. And if you knew me, you would know that I have no chance of looking cool here or anywhere else. Thanks for reading and commenting though.

  8. Ramani says:

    Sorry for the cool comment or to assume things. I've studied both Ayurveda and Yoga for over 10 years. While Yoga and Ayurveda are coined sister sciences in it's new age representation in America, they have very different aims, philosophies, histories,and outlooks. While Ayurveda is okay with everything under the sun and is primarily concerned with the body, alcohol is usually reserved as a medicinal preparations or special occasions ( i.e. as an aphrodisiac) often in the form of a wine. Your love of the substance seems a little out of line with the Ayurvedic uses, which is just fine but lets just call it as it is.
    Yoga is not really concerned with the body for the body's sake in any of its permutations however. Even Hatha Yoga, which is where most modern practice arises and what you seem to practice, only sees the body as a tool for finding the higher aims of Raja Yoga. As such, beer has absolutely nothing to do with it. Hope this clarifies a little.

  9. runyogabeer says:

    Thanks again for your reply. I really do appreciate you sharing your thoughts. I am actually really interested in studying yoga in its entirety and I hope to one day have a full understanding of yoga. As of yet I have not come to the conclusion that my love of yoga and beer are conflicting. Maybe one day I will as you have and I accept and appreciate your thoughts. I understand that the way I see things is not the way everyone does and I hope that perhaps you can see that too.

  10. Miranda says:

    Thank you for the article, it was interesting..I think some people forget to read these with a light hearted attitude and have some fun with it. Owell! I hugely believe in balance and I think this article was just that. Thanks again!

  11. KBT says:


  12. I agree. It's great to be mindful about our alcohol intake. It's also great to be mindful of not taking ourselves too seriously:

  13. Megs McD says:

    Haha! My yogi friends and I joke about this all the time…

  14. Megs McD says:

    Remember, what people say is not what offends you, it's you taking it personally and offending yourself!

  15. Megs McD says:

    I have been a beer drinking yogi for quite some time now, and yes, the two do not mix, I fully agree. However, I am a beer judge, and was before I started practicing yoga, and I cannot help but love to connoisseur the sudsy stuff! Everything in moderation, including moderation! Yoga tells us, it does not need us, living our lives through yoga even can be too much. Instead, let yoga live through you! You can do that, even being a beer drinker!

    One of my favorite yogi parables, the shortened version:

    Two yogis were neighbors on the same road. One was a strict practitioner, who took everything seriously. Did his morning routines vigorously, but did not truly enjoy his yogic practice as one may hope. The other wasn't as disciplined, but he loved his life. And he loved yoga. He did his best, but did not stress over it.

    A enlightened being came down the road and stopped at the disciplined yogis house. The yogi asked the one how many lives he had left to live before reaching samadhi. The one answered with a small number, and the yogi grimaced. How torturous was living this life! How he wanted to be free of all his routines practices! The one left him to his remorse.

    When the enlightened one visited the relaxed yogi, he too inquired about how many lives he had left to live. The one replied with " as many leaves as you see on that tree (which it was summer, so MANY!). The yogi was overjoyed. "I love living a life of yoga, I am so blessed!"

    And poof! The yogi disappared, enlightened, gone from this existence.

    On that note, one of my favorite beers is:

    KARMA by Avery Brewing Company! A Belgian Pale ale, 13.53% ABV!!

  16. runyogabeer says:

    I have been dying to try Karma! I just found out about it recently but can only find it in a case- wasn't sure I wanted a whole case but I think I will take your recommendation! Thanks for reading and sharing your thoughts! The yoga parable you shared from Patanjali's Yoga Sutras is also one of my favorites!

  17. runyogabeer says:

    Thank you Miranda and KateBartolotta for reading and commenting- yes the article is all in fun as is most of my blog writing. I actually do take my yoga journey seriously but I also try to see the fun in the world.

  18. Megs McD says:

    Good news: you will enjoy this. Luckily the bottles are only 12 oz, and being such a high abv, you can cellar this beer. It will age, and the flavors and complexities will morph into a new, more enlightened being 🙂 enjoy!

  19. Adam says:

    Avery Brewery out of CO has a Belgian pale ale called ‘Karma’ and it is sooooo yummy!!


  20. Chris Schofield says:

    Awesome! My girlfriend (Anusara certified instructor) and myself (former professional brewer and avid home brewer) have been hosting what we call Asana and Ale nights every couple months for the past year or so at our friend's studio in Corpus Christi, TX. She teaches a 90 min class and afterwards everyone socializes for a couple hours and drinks my beers (I have a kegerator with 4 taps so I bring 4 different beers). It's always a great time.

    Beer is full of life (literally full of living yeast organisms) and I find that when you treat it as a craft and an art form, rather than a means to an end, people truly appreciate and respect it…and love the whole experience.

    Thanks for your post!

  21. […] rain. Seriously though, dude. It’s ok if you want to vote for Mitt Romney. But he will never have a beer with you. Ever. Being of the Mormonic persuasion. I wish his team of right-winged turkeys would keep their […]

  22. runyogabeer says:

    that sounds awesome- I am in the process of developing something similar on my town!