Strange Brews: Beer Cocktails

Before I start receiving death threats from beer purists in the comment section, I want to point out that blending beers and creating new combinations is nothing new. In fact, according to Beer Advocate, this kind of experimentation actually led to several varieties of beer as we know them today. What's more, the recipes below are mild compared to beer cocktails being served 200 years ago. During the American Colonial period many taverns served "Flip," a mix of strong beer and sugar, molasses or dried pumpkin, New England rum, and eggs for a foaming effect. Mmmm, sounds frothy! During Britain's Industrial Age, English brewers couldn't make popular Porters fast enough to meet the high demand. Some would add any readily available narcotics - opium, Indian hemp, strychnine, tobacco, darnel seed, logwood, salts of zinc, lead and alum - to produce intoxicating effects in an attempt to cut corners. It's no surprise that this practice resulted in the poisoning and death of many a beer drinker.

Recipes for beer cocktails with alcoholic mixers and non-alcoholic mixers, after the jump.

Beer + Mixers with Alcohol "Liquor before beer, you're in the clear. Beer Before liquor, never sicker." Could there be a long-lost third verse that we never knew about? "Mix 'em both in a glass, you'll be on yer ass!"

BeerRitas Muy deliciosa. You'll really be a fan if traditional 'ritas have you packing a side of TUMS. In a large pitcher, combine two 12-ounce bottles of Mexican lager (Corona, Dos Equis), one 12-ounce can thawed limeade concentrate, and 1 ½ cups of tequila.

Black Velvet (a.k.a. Champagne Velvet, Friendly Sons of St. Patrick Shandygaff) Fill tall glass halfway with a stout, such as Guinness. Add champagne. Put on your black leather chaps -- What? Doesn't everyone have a pair? -- and belt out the 1989 Alannah Miles song by the same name.

Caribbean Night Add 1-2 oz. coffee liquor to a Red Stripe. A few of you are now thinking that this could also make a delicious Caribbean Morning. It's okay. I'm here to write, not judge.

The Cure Developed by a D.C. Bartender as a "cure" for the economic recession by sexing up a Miller High Life with a few fancy ingredients. Pour 10 ounces of Miller High Life into glass over ice. Add 2 tablespoons Domaine de Canton ginger liqueur and 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice. If you want to make this (oxymoron alert!) the classiest Miller High Life EVER, add five matchstick-size pieces of peeled fresh ginger as garnish.

Isar Water (a.k.a. Swamp Beer, Dirty Beer) Named for the Isar River, used by the famous Munich Breweries. Bavarians are known for their love of wheat beer, which explains the base. Pour one ounce Blue Curacao and 2 ounces apple or orange juice into a glass. Fill with a wheat beer, such as Paulaner Hefeweizen. When made correctly, this drink is a swampy green in appearance. Much more fun on St. Patrick's Day than dumping green food coloring into Miller Lite.

Michelada Pour your beer into a glass filled with ice and add the juice of one small lemon. Add a dash of soy, Tabasco and Worcestershire. Add a pinch of salt and pepper. Some say a "True Mexican" Michelada is not complete without a shot of Tequila mixed in, but there's no way this can be called an authentic Mexican Michelada as I doubt many Mexicans had Worcestershire and soy sauce laying around back in the day.

Stout Diplomat A dessert drink developed by San Francisco's Nopa restaurant for a beer-cocktail competition. The drink is likely to win fans on both sides of the beer/cocktail aisle, hence the name. Mix 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) mild dark rum, such as Diplomatico, and 1 tablespoon (1/2 ounce) Pedro Ximénez sherry in a glass. Add 12 tablespoons (6 ounces) chocolate or regular stout. All ingredients should be chilled for best results.

Turboshandy A modern variation of the Traditional Shandy (see below), this drink mixes equal parts beer with Smirnoff Ice and Mike's Hard Lemonade. If it were up to me, I would have named this drink "The Vomitron."

Beer + Non-Alcoholic Mixer Gettin' crazy with combinations - not with alcohol content.

Bee Sting Mix any dark beer with orange juice, half and half. Either the person that created this one used incredibly tart orange juice or has never been stung by a bee.

Broadway Allegedly this is popular in Japan. Mix beer and Cola half and half. This is the kind of drink I imagine being served at Comic Con. Man I love the Japanese.

Red Beer (a.k.a. Bloody Beer, Bloody Mary Beer, Red Rooster, You Mom, Ruddy Mary, Tomato Beer) This drink has more names than Sean "P. Diddy" Combs. Mix any beer and tomato juice, half and half. Add a splash of Tabasco if you like it spicy, and we know you do... Garnish similarly to a Bloody Mary.

Shandy (a.k.a. Shandygaff) This drink dates back to 17th century England when the beer was not of the best quality and was flavored with a sweet lemon mixture. Fill a beer mug with a lager. Top with ginger ale or lemonade (or both).

Snakebite Mix a stout with cider, half and half. Again, I seriously doubt the recipe's author has never been bitten by a snake.

Recipes adapted from That's the Spirit and Epicurious.

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