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Buzz-Worthy Brew Debuts

May 30, 2024 02:32 PM

Periodical cicadas are adding a touch of magic to this summer. Inspired by these intriguing insects, the Lake County Forest Preserves teamed up with Harbor Brewing Company in Lake Villa to celebrate the cicadas’ 2024 arrival with a new craft beer.

Brewed XIII (13) is named after the brood of cicadas that emerged this summer after spending 17 years underground. “The hibiscus shandy is deep red, inspired by the eyes of the insect,” said Harbor Head Brewer Adam Brose, who crafted the beer. “It bursts with refreshing tropical vibes, thanks to infusions of lemonade and hibiscus tea. The beer, which contains no dye or cicadas, is floral and fruity.” The base beer is a golden ale with wheat and oats and has a blended 4.8% alcohol by volume, or ABV.

“The beer is fantastic,” said Kyle Wenzel, Harbor Brewing Company owner. “This is going to be a great summer beer. It’s going to go quick.” A shandy beer is a refreshing beverage made by mixing beer with lemonade, in this case a hibiscus lemonade.

The new beer debuts Friday, May 31, at the inaugural Brews & Views fest that runs from 4–8 pm at the Beer Garden at Independence Grove in Libertyville. Visitors will have the opportunity to try beverages from nine local breweries.

Brewed XIII will then be sold regularly at the Beer Garden and at Harbor Brewing locations in Lake Villa and Winthrop Harbor.

The idea for the beverage has been brewing for quite some time. Wendel and Hans Lopez, assistant visitor services manager at the Forest Preserves, talked about collaborating on a craft beer starting in February. “The cicada emergence seemed like the perfect time to introduce a refreshing summer beer,” Lopez said. 

Creating shandy beer is not new to Brose. Last summer he crafted a strawberry shandy that became the second-most-popular shandy in Illinois on Untappd, a geosocial networking service used to bring together beer enthusiasts.

Lopez expressed his enthusiasm about the new partnership. “As we toast to Brewed XIII, we're not just honoring the cicadas; we're celebrating the vibes of summer itself.”

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