It’s Beer O’Clock! (& A Beer Cocktail)

by Emily Steers on 02/16/2012

I really am a beer girl.  Despite the fact that I work in the wine industry, I vastly prefer a bucket o’ suds after a long day than a glass of vino.

Beer cocktails are usually kind of gross.  I mean, I’m just not one for boilermakers (mixing a shot of vodka with beer) or Irish Car Bombs (Guinness and Bailey’s? No thanks), and I can’t get black-and-tans to layer right (that’s pouring a lager, like Bass, on top of a stout, like Guinness– the taste would be fine for me, but I just don’t have the skillz to make that happen).

I was introduced to the idea of a shandy, or beer mixed with lemon-lime soda or ginger ale, by an old friend from way back, who grew up in Zimbabwe.  He used to drink shandies in the morning during football season, because early games on Sunday start around 11am here on the West Coast, and he purported that you couldn’t possibly drink anything other than beer when watching football.

Shandies are great when it’s super hot out, or if you do want to cut the alcohol of your beer.  Generally, they’re made with light lagers, but all I had in the house was the craft beer you see above, Allagash white.  Allagash is brewed in Portland, Maine, and I used to drink it a lot in college.  It’s really good and light in flavor, but it has a bolder body to it than lager (think Heineken).  Allagash is, well, wicked expensive ($8-9 for four bottles), so if you don’t want to “waste” a good beer on a shandy, pick up a pack of some other lighter-bodied beer.  But do us all a favor and stop buying that crap, swill, garbage,

stuff from Miller, Bud, and Coors.  Support your American Craft Brewer!  It’ll cost more but it’s worth it.  Here’s a long list of all the brands owned by Anheuser-Busch. Avoid.

White or wheat beers are normally served with a slice of orange or lemon on the side, so I decided to garnish my shandy with a pretty wheel o’ citrus.  The above orange is a Cara Cara orange– it came with this week’s CSA box from Farm Fresh to You. It is far and away the best orange I have ever eaten.  The Cara Cara orange is somehow smoother than navel oranges– delightfully citrusy, but without the pungent bite.

Basically, a shandy is made to taste.  You can do half-and-half, or you can make it stronger or weaker.  I ended up drinking most of the beer, then cutting the last little bit with Sprite to make a shandy!

If you’re not up for a beer cocktail, visit my cocktail page for more ideas!

Do you ever experiment with beer cocktails?

 

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

sarah February 16, 2012 at 8:08 PM

My boss makes a beer cocktail using lime beer, pink lemonade frozen concentrate, and vodka. It sounds like something Peg Bundy would make, and I’m ashamed to say I’ve enjoyed it on more than one occasion. It is important to note that each time I consumed after drinking a number of whiskey sours.

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emily February 17, 2012 at 12:02 PM

i really hope that it’s a shade of pinky-orange. the first time i had lime beer, i took a sip and declared to my fellow baseball game attendees, “it tastes like soap, but not in a bad way. it’s not as disgusting as you’d think!” which might be the ultimate compliment to anything with “bud light” written on the label. :-)

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Ada February 17, 2012 at 10:41 AM

I’m a beer girl too. Unfortunately, my SO seems to have a mild allergy to brewing yeast, so we don’t usually have much beer around. Actually, that’s probably a good thing: keeps me from having a beer belly. I love a good shandy. We’re lucky to have a fairly local brewing company that bottles up a delicious Summer Shandy.

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emily February 17, 2012 at 12:00 PM

ouch! an allergy to brewer’s yeast would be such a bummer. i would love to have a pre-bottled shandy! they’re totally delicious.

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Zeny February 20, 2012 at 6:53 AM

I really love experimenting cocktail mixes.. This is something new and I love to try it out.. My sister will definitely love this! :)

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Amy (the Craft Beer Girl) March 30, 2012 at 11:14 AM

I’ve yet to try a “Beer Cocktail” but from what I’m seeing online, they are all the rage right now! Are you familiar with Ashley Routson (the Beer Wench)? I’ve seen a lot from her on beer cocktails (you can find her at beermixology.com) A lot of what she’s doing over there is made with liquor and beer… this version is a great way for people to enjoy the same idea without jacking up the abv.

Cheers!

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