Just in time for warm days and long, lingering dinners on the patio comes the shandy. European in origin, it's a refreshing combo of crisp beer and sparkling lemonade (or giner ale or other citrus-flavored soda).

It seems to be a bit of a trend this year in beer; you'll find Shock Top Lemon Shandy, Saranac Shandy, Michelob Ultra 19th Hole Light Tea and Lemonade, and Leinenkugel Summer Shandy, which I happily sipped on my backyard patio after a bit of yardwork. Yum!

Though I was skeptical (I'm more of an IPA or ESB kind of girl), I kept reading about these beers and curiosity prevailed. It's a lively, fresh, hit-the-spot drink, not too sweet as I had feared but more crisp, tart, and quite light (it's rather low in alcohol). And though it tastes nothing like beer, really, I really liked it--the perfect lift during summer's most sweltering waves. Give it a try and let us know what you think.