Son of a Shandy

A different kind of beer cocktail

We sometimes feel that Los Angeles' burgeoning cocktail scene has overstepped its bounds.

In our mind, booze-heavy drinks should be a before-or-after proposition, libations that bookend a meal; when the first course hits the table, beer or wine is poured into our glass.

Son of a Gun's general manager and barman, Daniel Warrilow, has us questioning that logic with his spring- and summer-perfect shandies, a recent addition to the 3rd Street restaurant's cocktail menu.

These drinks have the same basic spirit as beer cut with lemonade, but Warrilow bottles his fruit-and-beer concoctions with a touch of fast-acting Champagne yeast and sets them aside for a day or so. The result is a light, mildly effervescent drink, the beer's bitterness balanced by the sweet-tart presence of fruit.

Recently, we drank a grapefruit-yuzu shandy ($12), made with wheat beer, alongside the restaurant's famed fried-chicken sandwich–an ideal combination that brought to mind both eating fried chicken with soda and pairing it with a brew.

We also sampled a strawberry-rhubarb shandy ($8) that Warrilow is perfecting. We wish it were as readily available in six-packs as the Anderson Valley Summer Solstice beer it's made with. 

Warrilow tells us a kumquat shandy made with Golden Road's Hefeweizen is up next.

Son of a Gun, 8370 W. 3rd St., Mid-City; 323-782-9033 or sonofagunrestaurant.com