When warm weather approaches, beer and cocktails are the go-to drinks to cool off. But have you ever thought that these two could make a great blend? Beer cocktails offer the best of both worlds: beer adds body and bubbles to the mix, while spirits balance or intensify the flavors.
With the immense variety of beer styles available today, it’s about time that beers bring something more to the table. Whether it’s the base of the drink or a twist to the combination, we guarantee you will find the best for summer parties.
When creating new recipes, the first thing you need to do is to identify the different tasting notes in beers and liquors alike. Feel free to experiment, but remember, try combining those flavors that would work together instead of creating strong contrasts. This is about crafting beverages with a delicate alcohol balance and an irresistible flavor.
The following suggestions will get you started. Once you get the hang of it, you can make great beer cocktails.
Tips to start making beer cocktails
If you don’t want to waste a good brew or liquor, follow these simple recommendations. Your knowledge of beer ingredients will be your best ally.
What to do
- Lager beers have a neutral flavor profile, so they are a great starting point. A 50:50 ratio would work perfectly with mixed drinks like a classic shandy. If you incorporate juice or fruit puree, keep the amounts in equal portions. But when adding a liquor, the proportions should highlight the taste of the beer or spirit, one over the other.
- Flavored beers are a better choice when creating sweet beer cocktails. The ones with a fruit profile would make a better addition if you enjoy tropical cocktails. Make sure to toss some fresh pieces of fruit to explore with textures.
- On the texture note, fruit purees add more body to your drink. This will also highlight the fruit flavor if that is what you are looking for. Use them with light beers, so you don’t end up with a smoothie.
- Heavily hoppy beers (IPAs and other English pale ales) are loaded with different tasting notes. The bitterness always comes across stronger, but they also have floral, citrus, and herbal touches. Identify the most powerful characteristic and find a match to make beer cocktails. (See also: Microbrewery ) Citrus drinks, for example, would go perfectly with lemon or orange-colored spirits like citric gins or bourbons. When the brew has herbal hints, then botanical gins are the best combination.
- Always remember to use the right types of beer glasses to get the best out of the aroma and flavors of your beer cocktails.
What to avoid
- If you don’t want to end up with a cloudy and thick drink, be aware of the density of the liquids you are mixing. A stout paired with tomato juice or a creamy spirit might not be the best idea.
- When blending flavors, the more subtle the better. Avoid contrasting opposite tasting profiles.
- When preparing a cocktail with a carbonated product like a beer, it’s not a good idea to shake all the ingredients together. You could cause an explosion of flavors, literally.
- For flawless blending, you have two options: you could stir the drink or shake the base and then add the beer. The latter is the one you should use when adding fruit purees to the mix.
If you get the perfect balance in your beer cocktails, you might even serve them to beer haters. Visit every microbrewery in your town or plan a bar-hopping trip to start exploring the endless possibilities in this brewing adventure.