Liam Deegan

Beer Cocktails

In Uncategorized on July 29, 2011 at 12:51 pm

In light of the recent Tales of the Cocktail, a liquid orgy of sorts, that took place last weekend here in New Orleans, I figured this mostly beer-centric blog could take a step into the realm of “mixology” or for those of us without suspenders, “bartending.”  Beer cocktails seem to be a somewhat recent trend*, as those behind the bar are constantly trying to find the next hot ingredient, beer has inevitably found a place in modern mixology.

IPA syrups, hop infused gins, and perhaps yeast zest along with other beery elements have found their ways out of the pint and into the coupe.  While nothing is as refreshing or reminiscent of youthful summers as a Shandy, there are newer inventions out there that aren’t as nasty sounding (or tasting) as a Michelada.

Death & Co. in New York has a “Noble Hop” section to it’s menu with fairly complex cocktails that use beer, including an almost obligatory nod to the Michelada, as well as cocktails using a Witbier or a hoppy IPA in concert with Velvet Falernum.

Seen in the picture above is perhaps a different take on a “beer cocktail.” Instead of introducing spirits, a separate category of cocktail can be mixing beers.  The well known Black & Tan is no contest for a Heaven & Hell made famous by Dogfish Head’s boozy 120 Minute IPA mixed with their 18% World Wide Stout.  In this case, Stone Ruination and Imperial Russian Stout make quite a tasty pair and even bring to mind the category bending Black IPA (CDA, IBA, whatever) with it’s roasty malt yet citrusy hop bite.

Recently I have come up with making a French 75 and supplementing champagne for Blanche de Chambly, Hitachino Nest White Ale or another Witbier to serve as champagne.  Perhaps similar results can be achieved with a subtle Saison.  The options are endless whenever a cocktail calls for fizz.  It’s just a matter of finding the right style beer.  But please, no tomato juice.

*I realize beer cocktails are in no way new, as the Shandy has been around for a long time as well as the “Red Eye,” Clamato, Michelada and other gross hangover “cures.”

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