Spruce up your beverages this holiday with these tasty beer based cocktails

In one of our courses this semester, my classmates and I had to develop cocktails as an assignment. These cocktails only had one requirement — they needed to incorporate beer into the recipe somehow. During the presentations I was extremely impressed with all the drinks that they had developed and wanted to share a couple of my favourites with the rest of the world.

Also, with the holiday season bringing families together, this could be a good way to ease non-beer drinkers into craft beer. All of these cocktails require very little in terms of equipment, though you may need to go out and add a few spirits to the liquor collection.



This cocktail combines the saline and citrusy aspects of both a margarita and Gose. It’s exceptionally refreshing and the carbonation from the Gose helps brighten up the base cocktail even more.


  • Old Fashioned Glass
  • 1 oz Tequila
  • 0.5 oz Triple Sec
  • 1.5 oz Freshly Squeezed Lime Juice
  • 1.5 oz Simple Syrup
  • Lime Wedge or Wheel
  • Coarse Salt


  1. Take lime wheel or wedge and use it to wet the edge of a rocks glass.
  2. Rim the glass with coarse salt
  3. Place 3 or 4 medium sized ice cubes into rocks glass
  4. Place the Tequila, Triple Sec, Lime Juice, Simple Syrup and Ice in a Martini Shaker
  5. Shake Vigorously for about 30 seconds
  6. Strain into glass
  7. Gently pour 3 to 4 oz Gose on top of the ice to float it above the rest of the drink
    • Good commercial examples include plain Uber Weisse from Nickelbrook or Westbrook Gose
  8. Place lime wedge or wheel on rim and serve

The Pompeii


This cocktail is a mashup of the Caesar (Bloody Mary w/Clam Juice) and the Michelada. Like the Caesar, it will make a great brunch cocktail to help you get over that hangover from the night before. It’s a nice and smoky beverage that you could use to introduce the Caesar lover. It gets its smoke from a combination of German Rauchbier and a chipotle infused vodka.

Chipotle infused Vodka:

  • 500mL of a neutral Vodka
  • 2 dried chipotles, shredded to increase surface area


  • Boston Glass or Standard Pint Glass
  • 4 or 5 medium sized ice cubes
  • Lime Wedge
  • Chilli Spice and Coarse Salt Mixture
  • 1/8 oz Grace Hot Pepper Sauce  (any Scotch Bonnet based sauce should do)
  • 1/2 oz Chipotle infused Vodka
  • 5 oz Mott’s Clamato
  • Aecht Schenklera Rauchbier Marzen or Weizen
    • A malt forward smoked craft beer should work as well
  • (Optional) Spicy Bean for garnish


  1. Take the lime wedge and moisten one-half of the glass’ rim
  2. Rim the glass with the chilli spice and salt mixture
  3. Squeeze the lime into glass
  4. Add the Chipotle Vodka and Hot Pepper Sauce to the glass
  5. Add the 4 or 5 ice cubes
  6. Pour in the 5 oz Clamato
  7. Using a spoon, stir the mixture to chill it
  8. Gently filly the rest of the glass with the Rauchbier. You should get some slight stratification



This cocktail combines a Dry Irish Stout and Dry Cider to create a very pleasant and beautiful beer float. It’s inspired by the Black Velvet, though with a few extra spirits added to change up flavour a bit. This uses some fairly sweet components, so it’s best to use drier ciders, otherwise it may be too sweet to enjoy.


  • Standard Pint Glass
  • 2 Small saucers
  • Spoon for floating
  • 1/2 can Mill St. Cobblestone Stout
    • You can substitute this with any Nitro Stout
  • 1/2 can Forbidden Artisinal Cider
    • Any dry cider will do
  • 1 oz Jacoulot Crème de Cerise-Gingembre Liqueur
  • Grenadine
  • Grated semi-sweet chocolate


  1. Place the grated semi-sweet chocolate onto a small saucer
  2. Pour some grenadine into the other saucer
  3. Gently moisten the rim of the pint glass with the grenadine
  4. Rim the glass with the grated chocolate
  5. Add the 1 oz of Cherry-Ginger Liqueur
  6. Pour in half the can of cider
  7. Using the spoon, gently pour the stout over top the cider
  8. Garnish with a couple sprinkles of grated chocolate

These were just a couple of the simpler cocktails that were presented and I hope you’ll get a chance to give them a try over the holiday season.

Are there any other cocktails you’ve developed or know of that use beer as a component?

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About Chris

If there is a place that serves or sells beer I've never heard of, I'll find a way to get there. A fan of the humble Pale Ale, though always willing to try a pint of something new. I also enjoy brewing my own beers and love sharing the science of the beer making process.