Rhapsody in brew

Get crafty at home with these delicious beer cocktails

Local craft beer can provide excellent flavour in mixed drinks. Oliver Harden photo

We are fortunate to not only have incredible local spirits in B.C., but also an abundance of amazing craft beers. As a cocktail maker, this is another great excuse to start mixing — but before you begin that process, you’re just going to have to make the sacrifice and open a few beers to taste.

Beer can provide some excellent flavour in a mixed drink, but the vast array of styles can be overwhelming when trying to select the right one to use: bitter or sweet, light or dark, spicy or fruity? Your choice of brew will determine your other base ingredients. Also pay attention to the carbonation in the beer, as it will affect the mouthfeel of the finished drink.

There is no right or wrong way to pair beer with spirits — it is simply up to you. Just be sure to create the right balance of sugar and acid. Here are four of my favourite local beers mixed up in four distinctly different cocktails with B.C. spirits. Try these out at home for inspiration, then start mixing your favourite brews into your own unique and tasty libations.

From left to right, the Four-Winds-of-Change, the Parkside “Sip ‘n’ Slide” Raddler, the Polynesian Strangefellow, and the Main Street “Wide Eye.” Oliver Harden photo

—by Justin Taylor

Try these beer cocktails the next time you want to crack open a cold one:
Parkside “Sip ‘n’ Slide” Raddler
Polynesian Strange Fellow
Main Street “Wide Eye”

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