2014-05-29 / Front Page

Iconic Del's Reaches Out to a New Market

By Jonathan Clancy


Mark Hellendrung, of Middletown and Narragansett Beer president, has collaborated with Del’s Lemonade to create a shandy, an adult version of the frozen summer time favorite. (Photo by Jonathan Clancy) Mark Hellendrung, of Middletown and Narragansett Beer president, has collaborated with Del’s Lemonade to create a shandy, an adult version of the frozen summer time favorite. (Photo by Jonathan Clancy) Whether you’re sunning at Second Beach or flying a kite at Brenton Point, it’s hard to beat a Del’s Frozen Lemonade on a hot summer day. That cool refreshing citrus slush has melted its way into many fond childhood memories, and now there’s a grown-up version, thanks to Middletown resident and president of Narragansett Beer Mark Hellendrung.

The Narragansett Del’s Shandy is a result of a collaboration between two longtime favorites of the ocean state, Narragansett Beer and Del’s Lemonade. The thirst quenching shandy mixes Narragansett’s award-winning lager with Del’s tart lemon concentrate, creating a refreshing brew that its founders describe as an effervescent citrus blast backed by just enough sweet malt to keep it from being uncomfortably sour.


In 1948, Angelo DeLucia built a machine to produce his grandfather’s frozen lemonade recipe in a little stand in Cranston. Shortly after that, he designed a mobile version to serve the unique quencher. In 1948, Angelo DeLucia built a machine to produce his grandfather’s frozen lemonade recipe in a little stand in Cranston. Shortly after that, he designed a mobile version to serve the unique quencher. “Growing up, my buddies and I spent many summer days on Sachuest Beach where we frequently cooled down with a Del’s Frozen Lemonade,” said Hellendrung. “So when it came to our second ‘Hi Neighbor Mash Up’ we knew a collaboration with Del’s would create a quintessential summer beer that generations of New Englanders would be thrilled about.”

Del’s Frozen Lemonade was first introduced to Aquidneck Island on June 1, 1988, when Middletown resident and town councilor Bruce Long opened the first local franchise at Brick Market Place in Newport. He has since grown the franchise to include five trucks, seven pushcarts, and two storefronts – 337 Thames St. in Newport and 729 East Main Road in Middletown – on the island.

“It’s the best job I’ve ever had,” said Long. “I’ve seen generations of families grow up drinking Del’s, both employees and customers, and on Sunday, June 1, I will celebrate 26 years of Del’s service to the people of Aquidneck Island.”

Simply put, a shandy is a beer mixed with a soft drink, typically something fruity. The style has been growing in popularity among beer drinkers over the past few summers, and this offering is sure to hit a fever pitch. Most shandy ends up being lighter in alcohol content due to the mix ratio, but the Narragansett Del’s Shandy weighs in at a full 5 percent alcohol by volume, so enjoy responsibly to avoid more than just brain freeze.

Narragansett Beer is on the fast track back to the top of the American regional brew charts, thanks in big part to award-winning Rhode Island brewer Sean Larkin, who holds creative rights to seasonal brews like Narragansett Fest, Narragansett Porter, and Narragansett Bock, all of which have helped Narragansett Beer to regain its reputation as a producer of quality suds. Larkin has won 12 awards at the Great International Beer Festival and a World Beer Cup medal. The Narragansett Del’s Shandy is brewed under Larkin’s keen supervision – and is sure to win some awards in the hearts of Rhode Islanders.

“The response has been amazing,” said Hellendrung, “People have been asking for its release almost daily since first hearing about the beer in February.” Narragansett Del’s Shandy is available in six packs of 16-ounce tallboy cans in stores. It is also available at many local restaurants and bars, but will not be sold from the Del’s trucks or storefronts. Production plans should keep this seasonal sensation around into August, but try some quickly because summer will be over before you know it.

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