Jun 4, 2009
10:53 PM
Table Talk

Summer shandy

Now that the weather has warmed up (and I can partake in a beverage or two again!), I wanted to let you know of one of my favorite summer quenchers. There are all sorts of combinations made with beer, but the shandy is by far my favorite. This classic British beverage, formerly known across the pond as a shandygaff, is beer flavored with ginger ale, ginger beer, lemonade or a lemon-lime soft drink. The proportions of the two ingredients are adjusted to taste, normally half-and-half. The drink was formerly known in Britain as shandygaff; in Germany, this type of drink is called a radler; in French, it is a panache, meaning “mixed.” The Midwest even has its own variety — a Cincinnati is a concoction of one-third lemon-lime soda to two-thirds lager or pilsner beer. The perfect tart summer refreshment.

I like this lemony version, adapted from Food and Wine magazine. The minty lemonade is also delicious by itself.

In a small saucepan bring 1 cup sugar and 1 cup water to a boil, stirring until sugar is dissolved, and stir in 4 3-inch strips of lemon zest. Cool sugar syrup to room temperature. Transfer syrup to a small pitcher and stir in 2 cups cold water, 1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice and a few fresh mint sprigs. Chill lemonade until cold (makes about 4 1/2 cups). Pour 1/4 cup lemonade into a chilled beer glass and top off with a beer such as pilsner or wheat.


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