Leinenkugel's Summer Shandy
Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company

Leinenkugel's Summer ShandyLeinenkugel's Summer Shandy
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Style:
Fruit and Field Beer
Ranked #924
ABV:
4.2%
Score:
74
Ranked #47,149
Avg:
3.2 | pDev: 22.81%
Reviews:
678
Ratings:
3,789
From:
Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company
 
Wisconsin, United States
Avail:
Summer
Wants
  74
Gots
  1,248
SCORE
74
Okay
Leinenkugel's Summer ShandyLeinenkugel's Summer Shandy
Notes:
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Reviews: 678 | Ratings: 3,789
Reviews by Imakoniver:
Photo of Imakoniver
3.48/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Meh! There are better summer beers. It might be somewhat refreshing on a hot summer day. I would drink this again but never order it or buy it again.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of shanegatter
1.43/5  rDev -55.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Tried to figure out if I was drinking lemon pledge or carbonated lemonade with a strong alcohol feel.

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Photo of Jasonm2
3.1/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I don't like this one too much, it's a weird Weissbier with some sort of "lemonade" flavoring... the best thing about this beer is that is has alcohol.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.25/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Murky pastel lemon that looks as much like lemonade as it does like beer. Up top is a frothily creamy head of cumulus cloud white that sets off the color of the liquid beautifully. It doesn't hurt that the cap looks as good and leaves as much lace as your average hefe weizen. No matter what Summer Shandy tastes like, Leinenkugel has nailed the look.

Here's where it gets tough. Do I look at this beverage through my usual beer lens or through a shandy lens? The obvious answer is through a shandy lens. The nose is wonderful. It smells like lemon tart filling with a hint of wheatiness in the background. I'm going to check my beer geek bona fides at the door and say that this is just about the best smelling shandy that I can imagine.

If only Summer Shandy tasted as good as it smells, it would have been accorded legendary status among the Leinenkugel lineup, at least as far as I'm concerned. Damn, why couldn't they have figured out flavor as thoroughly as they figured out aroma?

I think the problem is that there's too much lackluster American pale wheat ale and not enough lemonade. I wouldn't mind if the base beer was of higher quality, but it's grainy and bland and doesn't hold up its end of the bargain. I'm sure most people will slam this beverage for being insufficiently beer-like, but given the various flavors at play, I'd like to see as much sweet lemon zestiness as is present in the nose.

The mouthfeel has been designed for maximum drinkability. Unfortunately, it's a little too light, bordering on frankly watery on the swallow. I liked the gentle carbonation initially. However, by the bottom of the bottle, it makes Summer Shandy feel blah.

I think it's pretty obvious that the determining factor in the quality of any given shandy is the quality of the beer (all lemonade uses a pretty standard recipe, after all). I hate to say it, but this brewery isn't known for the quality of its beer... which necessarily limits the quality of any shandy that they could produce. If Leinenkugel has determined that this stuff will increase their sales, more power to them.

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Photo of Straz85
3.97/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4.5

I had this beer for the first time this weekend. It was one of the most refreshing beers I've ever had. Not for the beer drinker who doesn't like a light, summery beer. I expected it to be lemony since it says on the bottle that it's "lemonade beer", and it definitely was. I couldn't taste much wheat, but there were very vague traces. I don't think Leinenkugel was going for a beer that should be sipped, and has many different tastes, and I don't think they had the beer aficionado in mind when brewing it. But they succeeded at what they were going for.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
2.66/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

12 ounce bottle - $1.49 at Total Wine & More in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours out a clouded, dull yellow body with a smallish, fizzy, white head.

Smell: Perhaps there may be some sweetish malt hints in there, but the nose is substantially made up of sharp scent of Lemon Pledge.

Taste: Light pale and soft wheat malts with a touch of honeyish sweetness with the vaudeville-like lemonade flavoring jumping in at a moments notice. Slightly acidic. Sorely lacking in hop character or bitterness. Finishes crisp and lemony with a thin, sweetish background of malted wheat.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin body. Medium-plus carbonation.

Drinkability: While I'm not opposed to the idea of beer blended with lemonade, this just has a repellent artificial quality to it. Less Summer Shandy and more of a Summer Shitty. Wait, am I allowed to say that?

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.02/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Caught somewhere between lemonade and an American Wheat, the beer is both appetizing and distracting at the same time. The aroma opens with a burst of lemons with a confectionate counterpart that takes the acidity off of the nose. A wheat malt balance attempts to balance out the lemonade character, but falls a bit short. Looks timid on the wheat with a slight haze, fizzy head formation and low retention levels. Straw colored and over-carbonated; quite spritz-y. Flavors are dominated by the lemonade sweetness and tartness with, again, lacking wheat beer flavors. Lightly bready, underhopped, and a timid barley / wheat base malt flavor keeps the beer acidic and one-dimentional. Textures are light, crisp, and a bit thin, but certainly refreshing and thirst quenching. Finishes, well, lemony with that mild bread base. Palate cleansing and ready for the next sip. The beer is pleasant enough, despite the lack of 'beer' qualities.

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Photo of emerge077
2.6/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

07-13-2012
It was either this, Old Style, or MGD at Lawrel Liquors Tap, and I went with the lesser of 3 evils. I was on mile 10 of a bike ride and was thirsty. Coors Light pint glass filled to the brim with a razor thin line of foam across the top. Pale opaque pastel yellow color. Aroma was faintly of lemonade, but the packet mix stuff... artificial. It was virtually flavorless, flashes of lemonheads candy and club soda, dull papery aftertaste. Slugged about 5 sips and was on my way. Not much better than in the bottle, though it has a time and place if simply thirsty and presented with limited options.

07-07-2008
a/s/t/m/3.5/d/4

On tap at Pizzeria Uno in Madison, WI.

This was served in a Weisse glass with a lemon wedge. Color was an opaque pastel yellow with an orange glow to it. Thin cap of foam, partially killed by the lemon.

Some lemon juice and wheat aroma, fairly faint. I'm just glad it doesn't smell like overly sweet lemonade.

Prickly, natural lemon tartness at first, backed up by seltzer-like carbonation. Light wheat in the aftertaste, with the citrus lending a slight pucker. Light bodied and really quenching in the 80º weather. This isn't something i'm running out to buy cases of, but i'd order it again to pair with dinner on the patio.

Shandy = Beer + Lemonade... know what you're getting into, it's a pre-mixed beer cocktail, and obviously not solely a beer.

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Photo of Bm1
4.25/5  rDev +32.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Good taste for a summer day. Fruitful and crisp

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Photo of zeff80
2.5/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out a cloudy, pale yellow. Very fizzy with a white, one-finger head. Looked like lemonade especially while pouring it out of the bottle to the glass.

S - Smelled just like lemonade.

T -Tasted like lemonade with some wheat and clove notes.

M - It was soft and smooth. Also, quite fizzy.

D - It was drinkable but it didn't remind me of beer. It certainly makes a nice lemonade.

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Photo of Knapp85
2.8/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Summer Shandy pours out as a cloudy bright yellow color with a fluffy white head on it. The head settles and leave a little lacing around the glass in some areas. The aroma has a ton of lemon which is no surprise, there really isn't much getting past that. The taste of the beer is again a lot of lemon with just a little bit of grainy malts in the distant aftertaste. The mix of Lemonade and beer for me don't really mix too well. I'm just not a big fan on Lemons or Lemonade for that matter. I can see someone who enjoys those beverages may enjoy this a lot. I found the mouthfeel to be light and a decent choice for some people in the summer.

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Photo of mikesgroove
1.43/5  rDev -55.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

What have I gotten myself into here. I am no where near a fan of this beer, but I had one sitting in the fridge and in the sake of fairness had to give it a try. Served as cold as I could, and poured into a pint glass, this one was consumed on 11/10/2008.

The pour was, well pathetic. An almost clear liquid coming forward with only the slightest bit of a tint toward the pale golden color. Lots of carbonation here was readily apparent as it just ripped toward the surface like seltzer water. A decent head formed on the pour, but then fell back as things started to drag on.

The aroma was a step above horrible for me. Nothing here but a terrible artificial lemon smell that was light, and at the same time sickingly sweet. The flavor was even worse though. This was one of those that I literally gagged on when I took a sip. Cheap, like a bad sprite. There was just way too much carbonation that made it feel even lighter then it was, which was saying a lot. But the flavor lacked any real depth, no character to it at all. Just a light grain, malt beverage that was overloaded with too much lemon.

Utterly a wreck, this one ended in a drain pour, which I seriously hate to do. This may actually only be like my second drain pour, it was just that bad. In the future I would not make this mistake again.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
2.97/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Best by 7/2/12.

Pours a murky light yellow with a 1/2 inch foamy off-white head that quickly fades to nothing. Small dots of lace slowly drip into the remaining beer on the drink down. Smell is pretty much solely of lemon-lime soda and lemonade mixed together. Taste is the same with a grain flavor that comes out on the aftertaste. This beer has a prickly level of carbonation but it's a bit thin. Overall, this is not exactly good but it's not too bad for what it is. On the very edge of not being beer in my opinion.

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Photo of Beertron
1.22/5  rDev -61.9%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

First things first...

I've already had this "beer" and abhorred it. I'm reviewing it to detail exactly why its so bad.

Additionally, how is one to review this thing? It's listed under the category of American Pale Wheat Ale but it doesn't seem to fit in there. It's so unlike anything I've ever drank (anything alcoholic at least) that it should be in some other category -- probably Fruit/Vegetable Beers or something. Anyhow, I looked through some of the other beers in this category and saw Capital's Island Wheat and Bell's Oberon (uh oh), so I guess I'll have to review it with those in mind...

This comes from a sample bottle from the distributor. No information on it whatsoever (except that I'm not to resell it). We begin...

A - This poured 1" of pale white head that disappeared in less than 5 seconds, leaving a thin white covering. Extremely cloudy (couldn't even see my fingers through this stuff when held to light!!) soft straw hue, not unlike the color of lemonade. Pretty dang carbonated.

S - Light yeasty scent of sourdough which is pleasant until the end, when a battalion of artificial lemon smells invade. Lemonhead candy, Country Time Lemonade instant-mix powder, lemon Jolly Ranchers, etc. Not unpleasant, but not what I want my beer to smell like.

T - Unreal. This tastes like carbonated water with a small splash of artificial lemon in it -- like if you poured generic lemonade out of a can over ice and let it sit until it was fully watered-down. Carbonation is fierce and if there's any malt flavor in here, the bubbles have effectively destroyed it. Considering how overbearing the artificial lemon scent is, I find it hard to believe how subdued the lemon flavor is. I've honestly never had a beer with this little beer flavor before -- I can't taste malt, wheat, hops or even alcohol...it's fascinating in that regard.

M - Light and mega-effervescent. Sparkling mineral water.

D - Difficult to judge. I'd be willing to bet that I could drink a case of this stuff without acquiring either a buzz or a discernible flavor, but you'd have to put a gun to my head first. For the average BA, the only reason you'd even take a fourth sip is out of sheer disbelief.

This "beer" is so bad that its amazing on a number of levels. It makes you wonder exactly how this became a product. Its staggering to think that someone tasted this and decided that it was good and that it should be marketed. I'm pretty sure that this beer was created exclusively for people that hate beer. Occasionally, I could find a benefit to that -- like that it might help folks who normally don't like beer make the switch -- but anyone who likes this stuff will never like good beer.

My continuing fascination with this stuff led me to perform an experiment. I took a warm can of Country Time lemonade and mixed it with straight carbonated water in a 1:10 ratio (one part "lemonade" to 10 parts water). It's resemblance to this "beer" was uncanny -- a few of my staff members couldn't even figure out which was which. Personally, I didn't find them to be identical -- I actually found the water/lemonade mixture to be better. Honestly, I could certainly see someone finding this refreshing on a hot summer day but a bottle of good sparkling water and a lemon wedge would be cheaper and tastier.

This beer is so terrible that its almost unbelievable. But (and I say this with complete seriousness) you absolutely have to try it for yourself!! It will blow your mind.

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Photo of danno77
1.26/5  rDev -60.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Tried this beer several times out of a bottle, but just couldn't get myself to enjoy any of it. The apprearance was cloudy much like the sunset wheat. Once poured into a glass and straight from the bottle, it smelled of terrible artifical lemon. I was unsure if I was about to drink a shandy or lemon pine sol. The taste was bad enough to make Kool Aid Man gag. It tasted of the most artifical lemon flavor mixed with flat soda water. The mouthfeel was terrible as well, because the carbonation was doing a nasty number on my tongue. The overall drinkibility was awful. This is by far the worst beer I have sampled of the Leinenkugel's line or from any brewery for that matter.

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Photo of DJED69
3.43/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Call me crazy, but I like this ice cold during the summertime. Refreshing, crisp, low abv, and reasonably priced. Love the 16oz cans! Great BBQ or boat choice.

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Photo of BeerBobber
4.56/5  rDev +42.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy yellow with a soapy white head. Lots of streaming bubbles and some particles floating about.

Smell is a wonderful nose cleaning lemony citrus smell that overpowers other smells that I may pick up.

Taste is a wonderful tart lemon snap. Taste reminds me of those lemon head candies I used to get as a kid.

Mouth feel is awesome! You take a drink and the tart forces your tongue to the roof of your mouth in a bizarre attempt to try to squeeze more out of it, and BAM the beer just disappears. So clean and crisp it really amazed me.

I am so happy the wife talked me into buying a six of this during our last Total Wine journey. And there will be many more of these coming home that is for damn sure. We live in Vegas where the summers get hot enough to burn the hairs off your nut sack and I can see a cooler full of ice and Summer Shandy going to the park and fixing up some serious damn BBQ!

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Photo of MFMB
3.44/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Enjoy this beer on a hot summer eve. Also a good beer to cook with. Packers suck!!

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.68/5  rDev +15%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

this one is probably a bit underrated here on BA. its got a pale hazy yellow glow, with a sudsy white head aver an inch tall. the nose is akin to a decent Berliner Weiss, lactic and tart, while also lemony and light. it feels less like a half lager half lemonade than it does a brewed beer with lemon, its zesty and acidic, refreshing and light, very fresh, and the lemon presence is huge here. its got a nice drinkability, and is very easy down. good bubbles, minimal body, although not soda-like as some can be. I love how real the lemons taste, not artificial at all, and I think the proportions are right. ive been recently appreciating the shandy style, and this one is sort of the original in the united states. I like it much better than many other leiny offerings, and would be happy to have this constantly on deck all summer, especially in the mornings and early afternoons. really this is pretty good.

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Photo of KLHBB
3.44/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The more I drink it, the more I like it. The sweet lemon is refreshing but doesn't put me in the mind of toilet bowl cleaners. A good mix of lemonade and wheat beer.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.28/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Well I'm not sure what to say about this one. A shandy is lager and lemonade mixed, and that's what this tastes like. The lemonade might not be the best (it tastes like powdered mix), and I'd like to see a hint more acidity, but I can hardly fault it. It's cloudy like lemonade (and actually has pretty good lacing), it smells like lemonade when you raise the glass to your nose, and it tastes like lemonade mixed with beer. And it's not overly sweet or overly bitter or overly acidic. So, overall it's fairly well done and nicely balanced. I enjoyed it, and I'd have another if I was at a BBQ or other warm-weather outdoor event.

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Photo of Kemmerlin
2.2/5  rDev -31.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

A: A creamy light unfiltered golden yellow color and leaves a thick head in the glass.

S: In keeping with the style of the beer, the smells were of lemonade, wheat, cut grass, salt, and a mild soap.

T: A strong taste of lemon pinesol that was very sour. A tepid taste like vomit and a mild taste of wheat beer rounded out this brew.

M/D: Light beer that was smooth and creamy. The drinkability was extremely harsh and because of the sour vomit taste it was very hard to put down the throat.

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Photo of jrohrbacher
3/5  rDev -6.3%

Photo of MoreThanWine
3.6/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured a 3/4" white head. Hazy lemonade yellow colored body. Smells like lemonade. Taste is pretty much as to be expected half weiss beer and half lemonade. Although there is some lemonade sweetness I don't personally think it was even a fraction as sweet as a typical off the shelf lemonade. Plus if it had instead been predominately beer with just a little lemonade spike it would be been more like one of those BMC's with lemon or lime twist. So all in all I thought this delivered exactly what the label indicated. And yes, it's refreshing.

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Photo of Superfly3176
2.09/5  rDev -34.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

I tried this a few weeks ago when we went out to dinner. I was expecting a mild lemon malt taste. It wasn't mild at all, the lemon taste was downright overpowering.

The beer pours a nice yellow to gold color. Had a good head to it. I'm not a big fan of this type of beer, too sweet for my taste. But Widmer Brothers Citra Blonde Summer brew was by far better tasting.

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Leinenkugel's Summer Shandy from Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company
Beer rating: 74 out of 100 with 3789 ratings