Scotch cocktails with beer? Yes please!

beer and scotch cocktails

Scotch cocktails are nothing new, but ones with beer as an ingredient? Blasphemy! That is until now, apparently.

Auchentoshan is an outlier in the scotch world. And it’s not just because their marketing squad came up with the hashtag, #distilleddifferent either. It actually is different. They are one of the only distilleries to triple distill all of their spirits.

The number of distillations plays a big role in the final product. That’s not the case for vodka being continuously run through megasized column stills, but the difference is clear in whiskies distilled two or three times. Put a typical Irish whiskey next to a typical scotch whisky, and you’ll find the former tends to be noticeably lighter. That’s the third distillation in action, and it’s where Auchentoshan holds true to their hashtag.

The upside to a lighter whisky is that it’s more approachable to non scotch drinkers. They’re trying to reel in the folks who sipped a Laphroaig once and ran away forever. Auchentoshan doubled down with American Oak, which aged entirely in first fill bourbon barrels. This creates the signature vanilla injection to which most Usonian whiskey drinkers are accustomed.

Scotch cocktails turn to beer for an added boost

People often think that a lighter whisky doesn’t lend itself to scotch cocktails because the spirit gets lost in the crowd. Auchentoshan spit in the face of that notation by mixing with an even bigger flavor… beer. When I attended an event they put on a couple weeks ago, I genuinely expected the drinks to be just ok. Nothing special. Just free and intoxicating. It turns out I was wrong.

scotch cocktail with beer

Auchentoshan brand ambassador Robin Nance called up Master Cicerone Pat Fahey awhile back and said, “Help! We want to do something awesome!” At least that’s how I assume it went. They had the bright idea to launch an “Auchentoshan and Ale” campaign and take their beer and scotch cocktails around the country to different ale fests.

While people at said fests might not have a very discerning palate by the time cocktail hour rolls around, it’s still a gamble. I can’t say for sure whether the beer and scotch cocktails are going over well this summer because I’m not equipped for exit polling in other cities (or my own).  But I can say that the two I had were a damn good idea.

The new scotch cocktails play better than Matt Damon’s nose in Oceans: Al Pacino Edition. Full credit to Fahey and Nance for finding a way to make the beer compliment the whisky and the whisky compliment the beer. These aren’t wimpy beers either. We’re talking IPA’s, Porters, etc. The results are as interesting as they are delicious, and at only $40 a bottle for scotch, you can afford quite a bit of trial and error.

I’ll throw the two recipes down below should you be so inclined to try them. The first is ideal for lovers of the Negroni or a Hanky Panky and the second is a great patio pounder.

Recipes

IT’S BITTER TO BE HOPPY

  • 1.5 oz Auchentoshan American Oak
  • .5 oz Aperol
  • .25 oz fresh grapefruit juice
  • 2.5 oz IPA
  • 6 dashes Lemon Bitters

Stir all ingredients and strain into a coupe. Garnish with lemon wheel.

LEMON TELL YOU SOMETHIN’ HONEY

  • 1.5 oz Auchentoshan American Oak
  • .5 oz parts Honey Syrup (1:1)
  • 1 oz fresh lemon juice
  • 3 oz Belgian wheat beer

Build in a rocks glass filled with ice. Stir. Garnish with lemon peel.

A wise person once said, "Take overhead cocktail shots. People love that shit." Well, here you go!

A photo posted by Colin Joliat (@boozist) on

Colin Joliat
About Colin Joliat 293 Articles
Colin Joliat is the brains behind this rinky-dink operation. He covers the alcohol industry with two parts information, one part comedy, and one part WTF is wrong with this guy. He's written for Brobible, Guyism, Thrillist, CoolMaterial, Craft, and more.