Beer cocktails or beertails are nothing new, we have been mixing other drinks with beer for years. Even mixing two beers like a light and bitter which is half a pint of bitter mixed with half pint of light ale can be classed as a beer cocktail.
Two or more drinks mixed together is basically a cocktail. So adding lemonade to beer which creates a shandy/radler is a cocktail made with beer. But what other beer cocktails are there and are they worth exploring?
There are plenty of beer cocktails. The Michelada, Black Velvet, beergarita and colabier are just a few that pop to mind. But are they worth exploring? In my opinion its a big fat no, beer is beer, beer is great, leave it alone and don’t spoil what the brewery worked so hard to create.
Although I might think mixing other drinks with beer is sacrilege, others might disagree. So I am going to look at what beertails are out there.
Beer On Beer Cocktails
Before we look into the world of beer cocktails where beer is spoilt by other ingredients that should not be in beer.
I am going to look at a few old school beer mixtures that I do approve of and have tried myself in the past.
Light And Bitter
Light and bitter is light ale mixed with bitter. The bitter is poured from the draught tap and the light ale is a bottle.
I think it is still available in some pubs, but pretty rare now. When I use to drink it years ago, you would end up with more than a pint.
The bartender would always pour more than half a pint of bitter to go with the bottle of light ale. Its an old classic beer on beer mixture.
Half And Half
This is also known as a Black And Tan, however the term is offensive to the Irish, so we will keep it as half and half.
It is basically half light beer mixed with half dark beer. So half a pint of pale ale with a stout poured on top. Lager can be used too, and the most popular stout used is Guinness.
This consists of half lager and half cider. One I have drunk on many occasions in the past, but it did get a reputation for being a bit lethal.
Some landlords refused to serve it, and there have been rumours that it is illegal. However it is perfectly legal to serve snakebite and it is a perfectly refreshing drink.
Brown And Mild
A brown and mild is exactly what you would think. Half a pint of mild topped up with bottled brown ale. Another name for it is boilermaker, however that also refers to a glass of beer mixed with a shot of whiskey.
It can also be known as a brown split, half Manns brown ale and half a mild or bitter.
Mild And Bitter
Another obvious one is mild and bitter which is half of mild a young beer mixed with half a bitter. One that I have also had in the past too.
I don’t see anything wrong with mixing beer together, however I am not so keen on other drinks being mixed with beer.
Cocktails Made With Beer
Although mixing two beers together can be seen as a beer cocktail, here are some cocktails where beer is mixed with other drinks.
A Mexican cocktails made with Corona beer, there are a lot of variations, here is the basic version.
- Tomato Juice
- Lime Juice
- Tabasco Sauce
- Worcestershire sauce
- Lime Wedge
Rub the rim of the glass with a lime wedge and then dip into a little salt on a plate. Throw in a few ice cubes. Add tomato juice, then lime juice, add the tabasco and worcestershire sauce. Top up with beer and garnish with a wedge of lime.
Pretty similar to a Bloody Mary, you can use any hot sauce and replace salt or add a spice to it.
A simple beer cocktail which sounds absurd to me, I wouldn’t even try it.
- Coca Cola
Mix beer and coca cola in a glass and you are done, or you have been. The amount of cola you put in is up to you, but the more you use I would imagine the sweeter the drink.
Don’t do it.
Also known as a lagerita, it is a light beer or lager mixed with the classic margarita cocktail.
- Orange Liqueur
- Lime Juice
Mix together the tequila, orange liqueur and lime juice. Top up with lager or a light beer.
A black velvet is an old favourite, once a popular cocktail. Basically Champagne and stout, although you can add a twist for a little more depth.
Pour equal amounts of Champagne and stout into a wine or Champagne glass. To get a layered affect pour the stout over a spoon on top of the Champagne.
Any stout can be used and sparkling wine can replace Champagne. To give it a twist add a little marmite.
Honey Hops Fizz
This one combines the bitterness of beer with the sweetness of honey and the zing of citrus. Sounds disgusting.
- Pale ale or IPA
- Honey syrup (equal parts honey and hot water, mixed and cooled)
- Fresh lemon juice
- Orange liqueur
- Ice cubes
- Orange twist
Prepare the Honey Syrup in a small bowl by combining equal parts honey and hot water. Stir until the honey dissolves completely. Let it cool to room temperature before using.
In a cocktail shaker, combine the honey syrup, fresh lemon juice, and orange liqueur. Add a handful of ice to the shaker and shake vigorously for about 10-15 seconds to chill and thoroughly mix the ingredients.
Strain the cocktail mixture from the shaker into the glass.
Top up the glass with beer allowing it to cascade over the back of a spoon to create a layered effect. The beer should sit on top of the cocktail mixture.
Garnish with an orange or lemon twist.
These are just a few beer cocktails to choose from, but I guess you can try any favourite cocktail and then just add beer.
What Is The Boozer?
You may think I am referring to the pub, or someone who drinks a lot of alcohol. While both these terms are associated with Boozer, there is a different one.
It involves mixing beer with your favourite cocktail. It is an extension that fits directly onto a bottle of beer and is filled with a cocktail.
Open the bottle of beer as normal, then attached the boozer and fill it with the cocktail of your choice.
A crazy idea and the best way to spoil a good beer.
To summarise then, you can literally add beer to any drink and make a cocktail. Whether it tastes any good or not is another thing.
While I am okay with mixing certain beers together, I can’t think of anything worse than adding something like cola or orange to a beer.
The same goes for adding beer to a cocktail like a margarita. I know a lot of craft breweries are experimenting with adding different ingredients to their beer, but I think this is going to far.
Beer is a great drink, why spoil it by adding other ingredients to it. Leave beer alone I say, but you may have a different view. Share your thoughts about beer cocktails and whether they are worth exploring by leaving a comment below.