Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Is That Beer In My Cocktail? Yes It Is!

Beer in a cocktail?  Absolutely.  Using beer as as cocktail ingredient can add unique textures, flavors and aromas to a drink.  Here are three recent additions to the beer cocktail portfolio.  These came about after recently hosting a Meet The Brewer event at BUILD Pizzeria Roma with the fine folks from Bison Brewing Company.  The Hop Blossom and Saison Sour use small amounts of beer as a modifier in the drink, instead of beer being the main, base ingredient:

Hop Blossom
.5 oz. Spiced Hibiscus Syrup*
.75 oz. Fresh Lemon Juice
2 dashes of Tropical Bitters**
Shake well with ice
Fine-strain into a rocks glass over new ice
Top with 2 ounces of a hop-forward beer (I prefer Union Jack IPA, but for a different yet equally delicious flavor profile, try Bison Brewings Hop Harvest Ale, which is made with Oakland-grown hops)
Stir lightly to incorporate beer into the drink
Express the oil from 1 large grapefruit peel over the completed drink; discard the peel
Grate fresh cinnamon on top
Garnish with an orchid

* Spiced Hibiscus Syrup:  home-made syrup using dried hibiscus, cinnamon, star anise, sugar, water
**Tropical Bitters:  home-made, using lemon and grapefruit peels; blend of house spices (includes allspice, hibiscus, cinnamon)

The double dry hopping that Union Jack IPA undergoes compliments the spiced hibiscus syrup and grapefruit oil.  The bittersweet balance of orange, lemon, pear and honey found in Cocchi Americano Aperitivo works in perfect harmony with the tropical bitters.  A healthy dose of acidity from the fresh lemon juice balances the cocktail out, while a dash of fresh grated cinnamon on top ties it all together. 

Gingerbread Flip

We also featured our take on the Bison Brewing Gingerbread Flip*. This was our fun, delicious, crowd pleaser beer cocktail.  Think rich and creamy--almost like dessert in a glass--perfect for those cold Winter nights.  El Dorado spiced rum, Bison Gingerbread Ale, raw ginger juice, a bit of Martinique cane syrup, a whole egg, nutmeg and cinnamon.  What's not to like?!!?  *Read more about Flip cocktails and their history in a great article here.

Saison Sour
 1.25 oz. St. George Botanivore Gin
.5 oz. Tea Syrup*
.75 oz. Fresh Lemon Juice
2 large basil leaves
.5 oz. egg white
Dry shake
Add ice, shake well
Add 2 oz. Bison Honey Basil Ale to mixing tin
Swirl gently to incorporate beer into the mix
Fine-strain into a chilled Coupe glass
Basil leaf garnish

Wow, interesting color! This was our "experimental" cocktail.  Hey, we always have to try some new & different flavor combinations and ingredients!   Floral aromas; frothy & silky mouth feel; pleasantly bold, sour and herbaceous on the palate (mmmm....fresh basil and gin); subtle tea & honey on the crisp, dry finish, with those classic Saison beer notes present throughout. 

Sip, savor, repeat.  Cheers!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Wow! I might start to like beer now.