Craft Cocktails

Campari Shandy

By • August 22, 2013 • 29 Comments

47 Save

If you like it, save it!

Save and organize all of the stuff you love in one place.

Got it!

If you like something…

Click the heart, it's called favoriting. Favorite the stuff you like.

Got it!

You'll no longer have to buy a plane ticket to get in on the cocktails at Seattle's Essex: Owners Brandon Pettit and Molly Wizenberg (a.k.a Orangette) will be sharing their favorite recipes with us, every other week. Drink up, people.

Today: A refreshing, three-ingredient drink to get you through the last hot weeks of summer. 

Campari Shandy from Food52

We stumbled upon this refreshing drink earlier this summer, when we were cooking at home on a night off and were desperate for a cold beer. But the baby was in bed and we didn’t want to go anywhere, and all we had on hand was a couple of long-ignored cans of Bitburger from a camping trip that Brandon took with his dad and uncle two summers ago. It was beer, technically, and it was, in fact, cold. But it wasn’t particularly great, so Brandon decided to try something: he added a healthy splash of Campari, the bright red Italian aperitivo, and dropped in a wedge of lime. And boom, we had our Summer Drink of 2013.

It sounds simple, and it is. But there’s something surprising that happens when the yeasty, lightly sweet flavor of beer bumps up against bitter orange Campari: the first softens the second, and the second smartens up the first. Together with the brightness of lime, it’s complex and a little sophisticated, but still entirely everyday stuff. At home, we make it with whatever light-colored, not-too-bitter beer we’ve got: the PBR that I bought for making beer-can chicken, or those Coronas from the Fourth of July. But at Essex, where our beer selection is more intentional, we like to make it with a Belgian-style white beer like Blanche de Bruxelles, or Avery White Rascal from Boulder, Colorado. 

Campari Shandy from Food52

Campari Shandy

Serves one

2 ounces Campari
12 ounces light-colored beer (see note, above)
1 juicy lime wedge 

See the full recipe (and save and print it) here.

Photos by Molly Wizenberg

Tags: Cocktails, Drinks, Alcohol, Campari, Beer, Lime

💬 View Comments ()

Comments (29)


over 1 year ago MckaylsewNsew

i made this last weekend with ingredients on hand...found a lager in the fridge, swapped bottled lime juice for the fresh, and Aperol for Campari... so a bit lighter in flavor... it made a marvelous addition to our BBQ, Thanks for the inspiration.


over 1 year ago Jan Elizabeth

As a fan of Americano cocktails,as well as those light bright belgian lagers I cannot wait to try this. I don't care if it is September's finally gotten hot here in Asheville. :)


over 1 year ago James Carmel

Sounds similar to a french classic -- Biere Picon, which is a light lager mixed with Amer Picon, the dark, lightly caramelized bitter orange liquor. This would be a bit drier, though, and sounds promising!


over 1 year ago Rosie

Drinking these right now, in our basement, where we're trying to stay cool on a hot, humid summer day. These are helping.


over 1 year ago April Showers

Now that you are becoming published cocktail experts, you should travel to New Orleans one July and attend Tales of the Cocktail. It lasts several days and hosts experts from around the world with many seminars to enhance your skills! With your food knowledge, this would only build your repertoire as an expert par excellence!


over 1 year ago laurenlocally

Lauren is Food52's Director of Partnerships.

Enjoyed one of these last night on the deck. Lovely.


over 1 year ago Kukla

This cocktail is called Monaco and it is a French version of Shandy. Last December, when we had “your-best-recipe-with-beer” contest, I was researching beer cocktails and read about many of them and this one including. It’s really very refreshing, beautiful and tasty.


over 1 year ago kathleenmangia

Monaco is bit different, made with grenadine syrup.


over 1 year ago chef jan

I love Campari with a little vodka, fresh squeezed OJ and seltzer!!!


over 1 year ago Laura Wright | The First Mess

Beer as an aperitif? Maybe that's a stretch. Regardless, so into this.


over 1 year ago eatboutique



over 1 year ago Phyllis Grant

I often talk to my Campari and say, "You're so neon. And weird. And you've been sitting on my counter for 12 months. What can i possibly do with you besides make a Negroni?" Now I know. (I made Negroni popsicles and they were a disaster!)


over 1 year ago Kitchen Butterfly

Another use for Campari is to add it to Chapman. A Nigerian 'cocktail' of sorts, recipe on food52.


over 1 year ago dunham

Also, the 1794 Cocktail: 2 oz rye, 1 oz sweet vermouth, 1 oz Campari, (stirred/strained)


over 1 year ago LJ Waldo

Yay, I have been following MW since reading A Homemade Life. Would LOVE to visit ESSEX in person, but this new column will have to suffice. Kudos to you guys.


over 1 year ago Cristina Sciarra

What funny timing! We are visiting Seattle right now, and went to Essex last night! Also, Delancey:


over 1 year ago fiveandspice

Emily is a trusted source on Scandinavian Cuisine.

a) Yay! I am so excited for this column, and am planning on stealing all of your ideas and passing them off as my own so that I can appear to be the *best* cocktail party hostess, and b) a Campari shandy is pure brilliance. I am adding this to the top of my list of things to drink once I am no longer incubating a baby.


over 1 year ago acookswords



over 1 year ago Kitchen Butterfly

Congrats on the incubation Emily.


over 1 year ago fiveandspice

Emily is a trusted source on Scandinavian Cuisine.

Haha, thanks KB! Just one more month to go! :)


over 1 year ago Yossy Arefi

Daaaang. It's after 6 and I have all of these ingredients which means I am making one of these right now!


over 1 year ago Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

Man, this looks great. I'm making this to-night!


over 1 year ago Lauren

Campari & Blood Orange Soda has been my go-to all summer for the past two summers but sometimes (rarely!) it can get too sweet. This sounds a perfect compromise.


over 1 year ago Kenzi Wilbur

Kenzi is the Managing Editor of Food52.

Is now too early to make myself one of these?


over 1 year ago Brette Warshaw

Let's do it, brb.


over 1 year ago MollyandBrandon

It's only mid-afternoon here, and Brandon has to work tonight, but we're considering it, too...


over 1 year ago Kenzi Wilbur

Kenzi is the Managing Editor of Food52.

Cheers from across the country? We're doing the responsible thing and waiting until 5:30. (We're a collective drag.)


over 1 year ago Marian Bull

This all makes me so happy.


over 1 year ago Kristen Miglore

Kristen is the Executive Editor of Food52

We're doing this in t minus 5 at Food52 HQ. Welcome MollyandBrandon -- can't wait to drink more with you!