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Thursday, August 29, 2013

Mike's Shandy Hard Lemonade and Lager Review


The weather is perfect for an ice cold shandy right now, but I just wish I knew about this earlier in the year when the summer was starting. Still, better late than never.

Mike's Shandy comes in 355 mL cans and is available in packs of 6 or 12 at The Beer Store for $11.75 and $21.95, respectively, and it is out NOOOOOOW (or has been out for some time depending on when you are reading this).

So, the taste! Well, the aroma is a bit raunchy at first, but if you give it a moment or two, you will pick out 2 distinct notes - beer (OK, some grains) and lemon. Give it a taste and you will find that the two notes continue on. At first the taste was also raunchy but I soldiered on and after a third of the can, it grew a little bit on me, but I do have a few things to say.

The marriage between the beer and the lemon juice is not quite there yet. Mike's Shandy has a bright future, but right now I don't think the right type of beer, or lemon juice has been picked. I found that quite often the two flavours battled for dominance rather than compliment one another. I think with such strong lemon flavour, the beer base should have been a hefe or something similarly mellow. On the other hand, if Mike's insists on using a lager, then maybe the lemon should be dialed down a bit.

Aside from the balance issue, Mike's Shandy is super easy to drink, not too sweet and at 4.2% (I was expecting something a lot higher to be perfectly honest), you can keep on drinking these. The finish is very refreshing and feels like you just had a lemonade and not an alcoholic drink. I really enjoyed this at the end of the second can...very surprised. Definitely a good product, but not quite there yet for my taste.

If Mike's are reading this, try using a hefe as a base...or give me a call, I would love to drink a bunch of experimental brews for you guys...if they are free, of course.

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