We’ve talked about shandies: the traditional mixture of lager and lemonade before, and during a birthday party at The Pub at Golden Road over the weekend we had the chance to try a variation that we’ve been thinking about since the weather began to warm-up. We wanted to find a combination that was refreshing, sessionable, and that used all local ingredients, and the results turned out pretty great!
Our perfect LA Summer Shandy started with some Golden Road Hefe fresh from the pub, and we paired the wheat beer with the SoCal classic natural soda from Hansen’s. Hansen’s is a beverage company that was started in the 1930s in Southern California, and they began selling a line of all-natural sodas in the 1970s. Hansen’s Mandarin-Lime pop was ubiquitous when this writer was growing up in southern california in the 80s, and I have strong nostalgia ties to the brand. It was the prefect fit for this attempt to create a shandy with all local ingredients, and it is conveniently sold at the Golden Road Pub! The sodas come in a many flavors, but we chose the classic mandarin-lime flavor to match the orange notes in the hefe.
Our goal was to create a refreshing beverage that you could sip on all afternoon without your wits becoming severely impaired, and we started off with a straight 50/50 mixture of soda and beer. The sweetness of the soda really cut through the hefeweizen and dominated the subtle yeast character of the beer. But the citrus flavors in the pop did compliment the hefe, and with some fine-tuning we got the balance of the shandy right.
The final composition turned out to be around 1/3 soda in 2/3 beer, and this ratio means that a single 12oz can of Hansen’s will net you enough soda to cut 1.5 16oz cans of the hefe. The resulting shandy is about 3%ABV and extremely thirst-quenching! You can bet that the Beer of Tomorrow Fourth of July party will feature plenty of the Golden Road/Hansen’s shandies pool-side!
Give it a try, and let us know what you think of the combo! We also need to come up with a catchy name for the mixture, and we would love to hear your suggestions in the comments.