Summer must be right around the corner, because radlers are suddenly figuring more prominently on the LCBO shelves. A beer cocktail the combines a light coloured beer (a lager, pilsner or a hefeweizen typically) with another ingredient such as juice, radlers are desirable in warm weather for their thirst quenching properties. They also tend to be relatively low in alcohol, which is important when you’re sitting in the sun enjoying some suds. No one wants to be the guy who falls asleep in the sun and gets a nasty sunburn after all.
Amsterdam Brewery offers a blood orange radler called Sweetwater Squeeze Radler in their lineup, available in 473 ml cans at $2.85 a shot, weighing in at only 3.8% ABV. A few of my non-beer drinking friends swear by radlers, so I decided to give this one a spin. I was admittedly hesitant to have one – I’m not a huge fan of mixing my beer with juice. Last year I had the chance to participate in a product focus group at Samuel Adams, and their radlers & shandies left me desperately craving a beer to cleanse the palate. But Kole reminded me that 2 patio drinks in the summer, and I’m barely able to find my glass. So in the name of acting responsibly, I gave it a try.
Appearance: Unfiltered golden colour. Thick white head that fads pretty fast.
Aroma: Strong citrusy aroma from the blood orange.
Taste: Extremely sweet on the palate. Tastes more like an orange soda than a beer. Makes sense – this blend uses Amsterdam Brewery’s homemade soda, blood orange juice and a beer base.
Aftertaste: Orange peel aftertaste.
Overall: Serve with spicy Mexican foods to contrast the food’s heat. Happy Cinco de Mayo! I’m not a huge fan, but I can see the appeal on the patio.
Shawna has visited vineyards in 6 countries on 3 continents, and has a knack for finding the hoppiest beers around.
She can be found drinking alka-seltzer and coconut water in the morning.