Beer and Whiskey Pairing

Nothing is more satisfying than pulling a bottle of beer from the refrigerator after a long tiring day. Throw in some whiskey into the equation, and you get a fantastic combination that will give you more than the sum of its parts. Americans love pairing their two favorite drinks: beer and whiskey. 

While this practice was common in the USA, recently, it has caught the imagination of cocktail lovers worldwide. The combination makes a delicious DIY cocktail to deliver an extra punch with zero fuss. The humble pairing of beer and whiskey will lift your evening. If you are a regular at combining the two drinks, you will know what works well. If you are new to this pairing, let us help you kickstart your beer and whiskey experimentations.

What to Mix (and Not Mix) with Whis...
What to Mix (and Not Mix) with Whiskey – The Distillery Groove
Boiler Maker 

Before we head to the popular combo of beer and whiskey, there is one key term in the liquor sphere that you should know: the Boilermaker. 

A boilermaker is a drink in which you mix beer with a shot of whiskey. If you have never had one, you may head to the bar and order a combination of Whiskey and Beer, but you will get a strange look as it will be apparent to the bartender that you are a rookie. Instead, you can act like a pro and order a boilermaker. The bartender will make your Boilermaker by mixing your favorite whiskey shot with beer of your choice. 

History of Boilermaker 

Saying out this name will help you gain respect from your bartender, and the reason is its history. The drink and the name originated in the 1800s; at that time, steam locomotive makers had to work longer than everyone else. After a long hard day’s work, they moved to the local watering hole. To soothe their aching bodies and minds, they ordered beer and whiskey. 

With time, the combination became popular among the working class and bartenders. Hence, a bartender nowadays will immediately know what you want when you order a boilermaker. 

Whiskey and Beer Pairing

Beer and Whiskey Pairing Combinations 

Now we highlight the best beer and whiskey combinations that you can have in your next bar session or at home. 

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#1. Red Amber Ale and Irish Whiskey 

The most popular and best whiskey that is added with Beer is Irish whiskey. The reason is Irish whiskey has a malt flavor that tastes amazing with different varieties of beers. The whiskey’s malted barley will bring out more of the malt flavor. When you mix Irish whiskey with red amber ale beer, it will strengthen the malt flavor.

The holt and maltiness of the beer will offer a sweet and sour taste that you may be looking for in a malt combination drink. Both whiskey and Beer begin to accent and flow with each other as soon as it gets combined. Some of the best whiskeys to add with red amber ale beer are Original Irish whiskey, Jameson Irish whiskey, and Sexton Irish whiskey. 

#2. Rye Whiskey and Miller High Life 

As we all know, Rye whiskey is one of the most robust and most spicy whiskeys of all. Most of the rye whiskeys are well known whiskeys ordered in speakeasies. Combining the shot of whiskey straight into the beer will give you a great experience.

Though Rye whiskey is hard, it is never a bad idea to mix it with Miller’s high-life beer that is lighter and cooler. Miller High life can quickly cool you off by giving you a refreshing feel. Pikesville Rye whiskey and Redemption Rye whiskey are best to combine with Miller high life beer. 

#3. Irish Whiskey and German Lager 

The Irish whiskey and German Lager is a seasonal combination. With Irish malt whiskey, German Lager beer pairing will give you a more malty style to get a more mellow and delicious pairing taste. The two will provide you with a malty and delightful flavor, but on the other hand, German lager offers a spicy and bitter experience.

When you mix Irish whiskey with German Lager beer, you will get a drier taste. The best Irish whiskey you can combine with German lager beer is Jameson 18 Years Irish whiskey, Writer’s Tears Irish whiskey, and Bushmill’s Black Bush Irish whiskey. 

#4. Kentucky Bourbon and American Pilsner 

Many Boilermakers who are regular drinkers prefer this combination as it mixes sweet and bitter very well. Some people like the sweet taste of Kentucky bourbon, and mixing in American Pilsner will give a hint of bitterness that actually complements quite well. The traditional Kentucky Bourbon has a sweeter taste than any other whiskey, as they have caramel, cinnamon, and toffee hints.

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Here are some best whiskeys you can use in this combo: Cream of Kentucky Bourbon whiskey, Pure Kentucky Bourbon whiskey, and Woodford Kentucky 145 Bourbon whiskey. When combined with American Pilsner Beer, any of them will offer you a balanced and smooth drink. 

#5. Clyde May’s Alabama Style and IPA 

The best whiskey to combine with IPA is Cylde May’s Alabama Style whiskey. This combination is not common, but should not be missed. The combination will be sweet but not overly sweet. The whiskey contains a green apple flavor, and when you combine it with IPA beer, you get a pretty great mixture.

Reasons Why Whiskey and Beer Pairing Is a Perfect Match

Here are some reasons why we can say that the beer and whiskey combination is a perfect match. 

Beer and Whiskey

#1. Starts With Same Ingredients

The first thing that we must know is that both drinks have the same ingredients: water, yeast, and barley. And not to miss, grains are also added depending on the drinks. Another ingredient added in beer is hops, which gives bitterness and aroma to the beer. In the initial days of whiskey and beer production, they were made in very similar ways. The process starts with wetted of barley, germination, and then grounding at the mills. After the procedure, in whiskey, yeast is added, and hops are added in beer before yeast is combined. 

#2. Making Whiskey With Beer Is Possible

After fermentation, distillation happens when we talk about whiskey production, evaporating alcohol, and then condensing it. The output of whiskey and beer is identical until the fermentation process, and then it is pretty easy to make whiskey from beer. Many distilleries have tried this. 

#3. Whiskey and Beer – Amazing Cocktail 

They make a great combination for a cocktail and there are different ways to make it. It all starts with the first step of pouring a glass of beer with a shot of whiskey.

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You need to drop the whiskey in the glass of beer and allow it to fuzz for a few seconds, and then finish the drink without letting your lip leave the glass; such type of drinking is known as Depth Charge. You can also mix the beer with a shot of whiskey and stir it well to have a fantastic experience. 

Depth Charge

#4. Whiskey and Beer Share Beds 

Unlike beer, like ale or simple lager, whiskey gets matured in oak casks for many years. Even now, many beer breweries have started putting their beers to sleep for years into whiskey barrels. In short, they share the same bed to give a fantastic drinking experience. 

#5. Many Beers Taste Like Whiskey

Although Scotland breweries use malt that is not dried by peat and the Scotch whiskey Distilleries use low nitrogen barley dried by peat burning. The smoked malts give a distinctive flavor, usually used in beers that are a replica of whiskey. 

#6. Which One Is Healthier?

When it comes to knowing which is healthier between beer or whiskey, we must say that whiskey is much more beneficial than beer when it is about calories. Whiskey can also help to reduce appetite, which makes it a perfect guard against overeating. Plus, if you are on a diet, you can still have whiskey as long as you do not mix it with sugary drinks like sodas.

#7. Which One Is Stronger? 

The debate gets pretty interesting when it is about which one is stronger, beer or whiskey. Beer contains around 5 to 7% alcohol, which means a drinker consumes 0.6oz of liquor. And when it is about whiskey, 0.75 oz is finished in one shot. A beer can and a shot can roughly contain the same amount of alcohol. 

Parting Words

With our article about whiskey and beer pairing, it is clear that a boilermaker is something worth trying when delving into the world of whiskeys. The sample recipes we provided will give you a great place to start.