Timber Monster Brewing is hosting the beer garden for the Sultan Shindig on Friday and Saturday in the brewery parking lot. (Aaron Swaney)

Timber Monster Brewing is hosting the beer garden for the Sultan Shindig on Friday and Saturday in the brewery parking lot. (Aaron Swaney)

It will be hot in Sultan, but there will be lots of beer

Timber Monster Brewing’s new Shindig Shandy was created for this weekend’s event.

It’s going to be hot this weekend. Especially out in Sultan, where the Sultan Shindig is happening.

Hot weather is the perfect excuse to break out a shandy, the style that typically marries a light or blonde lager with lemonade or lemon-lime soda like Sprite. It’s a light, sweet beverage that is easily consumed and a crowd favorite as a perfect summer beer.

Timber Monster Brewing head brewer Mike Varnell didn’t make a standard shandy when he created his Shindig Shandy — he may have made something better. Using lemon-flavored candi sugar from Cascade Beer Candi in his base blonde recipe, Varnell has created a shandy in name only. No matter. The beer has the classic characteristics of a shandy: drinkable with a nice lemony bite.

Varnell brewed the shandy for this weekend’s Sultan Shindig. Timber Monster will be hosting the beer garden for the annual celebration, which pays homage to the city’s logging history with a carnival, street fair and parade. The beer tent will be in the brewery’s parking lot, right off U.S. 2 in downtown Sultan, and will feature food and live music.

Not a fan of the sweetness of standard shandys, Varnell worked with Jim Ladd, of Cascade Beer Candi, to get his hands on some of his Shandy Candi syrup. He then infused his base blonde recipe with the syrup, giving the beer the smooth character of a blonde with the bright, lemon flavor of a true shandy. It’s crisp and smooth and a great summer sipper with a big aroma of lemon.

Since opening the brewery in April, Varnell and his wife, Brandi, have worked overtime as the brewery/coffee shop finds its footing. Over the first 100 days of business, they said they’ve been astounded at the support they’ve received from the Sultan community. And now that it’s summer and more recreational opportunities have opened up along U.S. 2, they’re serving more out-of-towners.

With business heating up along with the weather, the Varnells have leaned even more on their sons, Mike Jr. and Jake. The two, who helped their dad with construction of the brewery, have been working in the brewhouse since it opened. They mostly clean the place, but both just got a chance to brew their own beers. Mike’s creation, Gold Barbarian, an IPA brewed with Nugget, Centennial, Cascade, Simcoe and Citra hops, should be out by the end of the month. Jake’s Mango Pineapple IPA will be out later this summer.

The Sultan Shindig Festival is today and Saturday in downtown Sultan. Timber Monster will be offering five brews in the beer garden — Shindig Shandy, Sultan Sweetie Pilsner, Skeptic Amber, Timber Monster IPA and Vanilla Bourbon Porter — plus bar food like wings and pizza.

Also on this week’s taster tray:

You Mango Me Hazy, Dreadnought Brewing: A Northwest interpretation of the New England IPA made with Citra and Mosaic hops and fresh mango. Available on tap at the brewery.

House Ale, Foggy Noggin Brewing: The annual release of the brewery’s barrel fermented ale, a delicate and smooth ale fermented in Hungarian oak barrels with perpetual yeast. Available in 22-ounce bottles at the brewery.

Ryesing Tide Rye IPA, Sound to Summit Brewing: Made with Simcoe and Mosaic hops, this IPA is resinous, fruity and extremely drinkable. Available on tap at the brewery.

In Memoriam/Coastal Debate, Skookum Brewery: In Memoriam is an IPA brewed with massive amounts of soft oats and white wheat and Citra Mandarina, El Dorado, Mosaic and Apollo hops. Coastal Debate is an IPA brewed with 100 percent barley malt and hopped with Simcoe, Amarillo, Idaho 7 and Mosaic. Available on tap at the brewery.

Hwy 2 Honey Lager, Spada Farmhouse Brewery/Haywire Brewing: A twist on the traditional lager, this beer was brewed with honey malt to boost the malt character and flavor, with a touch of sweetness on the finish. Available on tap at both breweries.

Berry Bruin Barrel-aged Sour, Spada Farmhouse Brewery: A sour brown aged 13 months in red wine oak barrels and then racked onto blackberries, strawberries and black raspberries. Available on tap at the brewery.

Levi vs. Van Imperial Brown, Crucible Brewing: A big imperial brown brewed by Crucible Brewing’s associate brewer Levi Hill. Available on tap at the brewery.

DRINK THIS

Shindig Lemon Shandy

Timber Monster Brewing, Sultan

Style: Blonde/Shandy

Stats: 5.8 percent ABV, 26 IBU

Available: On tap at the brewery and in the beer garden at today and Saturday’s Sultan Shindig.

From the brewery: Light and crisp, with just enough lemon snap!

Talk to us

More in Life

Jim Jamison and Stephanie Schisler wrote and illustrated "What Would I Be If I Couldn’t Be Me." (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Bothell grandfather brews up a children’s book

Bothell’s Jim Jamison, owner of Foggy Noggin Brewing, wrote “What Would I Be If I Couldn’t Be Me?,” and his daughter, Stephanie Schisler, illustrated it.

Vaccines promise health — and fun — for a family tired of social distancing. (Jennifer Bardsley)
COVID-19 pandemic brings a new appreciation for flu shots

After not leaving the house for weeks, a drive-thu appointment to get an influenza vaccine is an adventure.

The grille, front bumper, and headlights are newly designed on the 2020 Honda CR-V.
2020 Honda CR-V has styling updates and equipment add-ons

The entry-level LX model joins the other trims with a standard turbo engine and driver-assist technology.

The wide sidewalks of the Champs-Elysées invite strolling. (Dominic Arizona Bonuccelli, Rick Steves' Europe)
Rick Steves on the Champs-Elysees, the grand Parisian promenade

With its sprawling sidewalks and well-dressed pedestrians, this grand boulevard is Paris at its most Parisian.

Take care to acclimate your houseplants as you relocate them from the garden to the house. (Getty Images)
It’s time to move those summering houseplants back indoors

It’s a tricky thing to do, however, because light conditions in our homes are different than the shadiest of gardens.

Why mentors and role models are so important

We all can be living examples of integrity, compassion, kindness, commitment and perseverance.

The Sauk River rushes by near a popular boat launch area close to White Chuck Mountain off the Mountain Loop Highway, just outside of Darrington. (Daniella Beccaria / Herald file)
Outdoors classes and activities around Snohomish County

The listings include Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest updates and REI Lynnwood workshops.

Book-related events in Snohomish County.
Author events and poetry readings around Snohomish County

The listings include Third Place Books, Everett Public Library and Neverending Bookshop events.

This red laceleaf Japanese maple is a striking specimen, holding its burgundy-red foliage color though the summer. (Great Plant Pick)
Great Plant Pick: Acer palmatum ‘Tamuke yama,’ red laceleaf Japanese maple

This weeping tree is a striking specimen, holding its burgundy-red foliage color though the summer.

Most Read