It’s rough out there, folks. The economy continues to circle the drain, the Powers That Be do everything they can (as always) to line their own pockets, and our national media want only to cover “Medicare is Socialism” nutjobs who belong on Jerry Springer than rather than actually provide the public with objective information. It would be funny if real people weren’t experiencing real suffering. Times like these demand a strong stomach. And alcohol. Plenty of alcohol.
Joking aside, what times like these really demands is the company of friends. Difficult times truly make you appreciate the people around you. I recently had a visit from some folks who voyaged out West from the land of the People With Funny Accents and An Unhealthy Obesession with Local Sporting Teams for a three-day “rather corporate but still a great line-up” concert. One of these fine fellows was the first person I have ever met that actually had a beer named after him, and by one of my favorite brewer no less. Seriously, how cool is that? So in honor of friends and an extremely fun weekend, here are a couple of original (if not hugely creative) beer-inspired cocktails. Stay tuned for a cocktail inspired by New Jersey’s finest Lothario, beagle-trainer and part-time goalkeeper.
Strickland’s Old Fashioned
2 oz. bacon-infused bourbon
3/4 oz. Sierra Nevada Pale Ale syrup(*)
dash of Angostura bitters
lemon peel, for garnish
Combine bourbon, beer syrup and bitters in an Old Fashioned glass. Add ice and stir. Express oils from a large lemon peel and add peel as garnish.
* To make beer syrup, take a 12 oz. bottle Sierra Nevada Pale Ale and empty into a container. Let it sit out until it goes flat. Pour into a saucepan with 12 oz. sugar. Heat until sugar dissolves (do NOT boil). Take off heat and let cool. Skim off head and strain in cheesecloth into a container. Store in fridge.
1 1/2 oz. gin
3/4 oz. Sierra Nevade Pale Ale liqueur(*)
1/2 oz. fresh lemon juice
1/4 oz. St. Germain elderflower liquer
lemon spiral, for garnish
Combine all with ice and shake. Strain into cocktail glass and garnish with lemon spiral.
* To make beer liqueur, combine 12 oz. bottle of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale with 20 oz. sugar in saucepan. Heat to dissolve but do not boil. Let cool and combine with 10 oz. vodka. Strain through cheesecloth to remove head. Store in bottle.