A few weeks ago I read someone’s comment on a Shandy discussion, which more or less said “I might as well take a beer and mix it with an Italian Lemon Soda than drink a pre made one.”
OK sure you can use imports (yes I know Jones is from Canada but for the sake of this lets say all of North America is domestic), but why not a Craft Soda? Jones Soda Co has been doing their thing since 1996 and I have been a fan for probably as long as they have been shipping to the US. They have been available at Starbucks for a while now, and if you send them your photos, they may end up on a bottle!
Their Black Cherry (zero calories if you can believe it), Root beer and / Cream sodas are things of legend, definitely giving gold standard Boylan’s a run for their money (to note their Summer edition Sparkling Lemon Lime Soda would work perfectly for this concoction – But I have only seen it at eateries never in stores.)
Fast forward to last week, and I was enjoying a Jones Soda Co Berry Lemonade, one of those flavors I never had before, but while they were on sale, I had to give a go. Like their other products it was tasty and not super sweet but probably just sweet enough.
Why not combine a craft beer and a craft soda? I wondered. If for nothing else this would give me something that looked like Romulan Ale.
In my completely unscientific testing I started out with ½ and ½ mix of The Berry lemonade and Schlafly’s Summer Helles. Color was good but not enough lemonade. 2 to 1 was a bit better but since this was not super sweet it was still off a bit. In the end if I was going to do it again, I would use all of the Soda and then fill the rest of the tumbler with the Beer (12oz to 6-8ish oz of beer).
This isn’t something I would do often, but it was a fun test and was pleasant to drink.
If you like your shandys sweet though, you are going to need a sweeter soda, Save Helles are about as light and non bitter as we are going to get, and this soda did a great job cancelling out any of the Helles bitterness but that’s about it. Still toss this in one of those insulated straw mugged contraptions, TJ Max, Bed Bath, etc sell and you have a foamy bubbly green drink to sip on in the back yard.