Do not fear the liquor and beer
So they say, but what happens when the beer is mixed with the liquor?! My report: so far, so good.
My flirtation with beer in cocktails has been picking up speed. It started with the humble shandy and has progressed to other interesting concoctions. I have a feeling I will be reporting on more of these “aletails” this summer, starting with the “One Sunset.”
The “One Sunset” was featured on Imbibe Magazine online after appearing in the new book Beer Cocktails by Howard and Ashley Stelzer. After sampling the “One Sunset,” this book is now on top of my wish list.
One Sunset6 red grapes
10 fresh mint leaves
2 oz vodka
¾ oz Aperol
¾ oz simple syrup
½ oz fresh lemon juice
1 ½ oz amber lager (I used Full Sail’s LTD #05) grapes and mint to garnish (optional)
In a mixing glass, gently muddle grapes and mint leaves. Add ice and remaining ingredients (except the beer). Stir until well chilled and strain into a Collins glass. Top with beer and garnish.
This aletail has a touch of bitter from the Aperol and the lager, but tastes light and refreshing. Since I had the open bottle of lager, I tried subsequent variations that reduced and then omitted the vodka (sometimes substituting plain club soda). I didn’t miss the vodka in taste, and leaving it out creates a lighter-alcohol drink that can be enjoyably sipped all of a summer afternoon without serious consequences.
Better yet for continuous sipping, I scaled and tweaked the recipe to create a pitcher drink:
One Sunset Pitcher48 red grapes 30 mint leaves 8 oz vodka 6 oz Aperol 6 oz simple syrup 4 oz lemon juice 8 oz club soda 1 bottle amber lager
Muddle grapes and strain. Muddle mint leaves and grape juice, then add vodka, Aperol, lemon juice and simple syrup. Mix together and chill for at least one hour. Add beer and club soda just before serving. Stir gently and pour over ice to serve. Makes 8 servings.
As always, check out my Glossary of Spirits page for alcohol and mixer definitions and details.