If you're unfamiliar, the black and tan cocktail is the perfect drink for beer lovers who don't want to choose just one brew — it's the combination of two beers, specifically a stout or porter and a pale ale. The drink is also known for its iconic look: Because of the differences in density — the pale ale is denser — the dark beer sits on top of the ale when poured into a glass.
However, to achieve this, you have to use a specific pouring method. Begin by pouring in the pale ale first, as you would normally pour a beer into a glass. Then, grab a spoon, turn it upside down (so that the curved underside is facing up) and pour the dark beer over the spoon. The spoon is important because it interrupts the flow of the pour, which allows for the dark beer to remain separated from the lighter-colored beer when the two make contact.
What Beers To Choose When Making Your Black And Tan
Just as important as the use of the spoon is choosing the right beer. Of course, to achieve the look of the cocktail, you'll need one light beer and one dark beer — but there are a couple of other factors to consider. The traditional recipe calls for a Bass pale ale and a Guinness stout— these two beers were chosen because of their densities.
For the most part, you can substitute another pale ale in place of the Bass and another stout or porter in place of the Guinness and the layering should work out just fine. However, there is a chance it won't work because beers can have different densities within the same style — in other words, not all pale ales are made the same, and neither are all stouts.
Other pale ale options that are known to work well include Sierra Nevada or O'Hara's Irish Pale Ale, while other dark beers that work include Murphy's Irish Stout. If you don't mind experimenting, you can use your favorite pale ale and your favorite stout instead to see if they work well for the black and tan cocktail.
Read the original article on Tasting Table.