You know what we could all use right now? An escape. And since we can’t leave our houses, we have to get a little creative. Luckily, we’ve got just the thing to help: Hop & Barrel LemonBreaker Shandy. Think of this flavor as a blend of fresh and citrusy flavor that will leave you with thoughts of warmer weather. Intrigued? Keep reading to learn more from brewery owners Justin and Brian.
Where does the name Lemon Breaker come from?
Brian: We tried for MONTHS to find a name for this one. LemonBreaker took more time to name than any other beer we’ve ever named. At one point Connor came around the corner of the brewery by my office and I was just repeating the phrase “Sha-Shabba Ranks…Sha-Shabba Ranks Shandy.” He gave me a look and said, “Did you just say Shabba Ranks Shandy?” I felt very vulnerable and lost in that moment.
Describe this style of beer:
Justin: Shandy wasn’t a style originally. It’s a mixed drink of beer and ginger ale that was popularized in Great Britain during the 1850’s prior to the Radler out of Germany in the early 1900’s. Since then it’s become a wider term describing beer mixed with some type of “tangy” beverage. Lemon being a very common compliment.
Brian: It is Minnesconsin Lager blended with Spring Grove’s ultra secret, have to kill you if I tell you sauce recipe for their sour lemon soda.
Describe its unique flavor:
Justin: It’s lemon and it’s beer. Pretty straightforward, lol. To be a bit more descriptive: pleasantly sour with a just a hint of sweetness to cut through, and enough beer flavor to know you’re drinking a beer. Unlike a lot of other lemon shandies, Lemon Breaker actually tastes like lemon.
Brian: You guys could write this one for me: have you ever taken a lemon and jammed it square in your mouth while you shotgunned a Lemon Breaker…? I dare you… #micdrop. And if you do…send us that video and I will upload it to our new YouTube channel Hop & BarrelTube.
Was there anything memorable or funny that happened during production? Interesting quotes or “accidents”?
Justin: Not so much an accident as a shout out to Spring Grove Soda Pop Company in La Crescent, MN. The first summer we made this beer we became their biggest account in WI for how much Lemon Sour we were buying to mix in the bar. We approached them about making their Lemon Sour in house to blend with our beer on a larger scale and they been an amazing partner work with on putting this beer together for all of you.
Brian: Ugh…yeah, learning the hard way bout refermentation explosions/concentrate gravities…I’ll leave it at that.
If you could pair this beer with food from a place around town, what would it be?
Justin: Anything you’re having down by the river. This beer goes well with so many different foods, it’s more of an experience. Think warm days, cool water, a nice breeze. Anything other than the houses we’re all stuck in right now.
Brian: I would go to County Market to support their essential human employees and buy lemons. And a bunch of other stuff. And if they have toilet paper, I’m gonna try to hoard some.