Alsterwasser – German Style Shandy (Sparkling Cloudy Lemonade)

Shandy (Sparkling Cloudy Lemonade)
Shandy (Sparkling Cloudy Lemonade)

The History Of The Shandy

The Shandy Gaff is the oldest known version of the shandy-style beer cocktails. The Shandy Gaff is a 1:1 strong or pale ale beer mixed with ginger beer. The earliest printed recipe I could find for the Shandy Gaff is in the 1888 Harry Johnson’s new And Improved Bartender’s Manual. Every recipe I can see from 1888 to 1972 refers to the cocktail as a Shandy Gaff and not simply a Shandy, and they are all made with beer and ginger ale. Although the most popular shandy mixer today is not ginger beer but lemonade. The kind of lemonade used depends on the region.

Americans use the more regionally typical non-carbonated lemonade (like a child’s lemonade stand-style lemonade), the British use clear carbonated lemonade (7Up or Sprite), and the german style uses the cloudy carbonated lemonades (Italian soda style lemonade). The German-style is my favorite way to make it. The first account I could find of the cocktail being called a shandy and make with sparkling lemonade is in a 1989 research paper by John Balding called “We Teach Them How to Drink!” Interestingly that research paper argues that British children will start drinking at young ages anyway, so parents need to teach them responsible ways to drink when they are young. The Shandy is described as gateway alcohol since it is so easy to drink.

The commonly told history of how the lemonade was first mixed with beer comes from Munich, Germany. The story goes that a Pub owner outside Munich was in danger of running out of beer when countless cyclists stopped at his pub for a drink. To avoid running out of beer, he mixed the local lager with lemonade and sold it as the Radlermass. Radlermass is german for “cyclist liter.” The other german name I find for beer and lemonade is Alsterwasser. This is a reference to the Alster River in northern Germany. The article referencing these two german shandies referred to them as tractor or field beers. They were intended as session drinks with a low ABV but enough sugar and calories so that they could be consumed while doing hard work. They could refresh and nourish a sweaty field worker without inhibiting them mentally.

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Alsterwasser (German Style Shandy)

0 from 0 votes Only logged in users can rate recipes
Course: DrinksCuisine: American
Servings

1

servings
Calories

300

kcal
Total time

3

minutes

Learn how to make a German-style Shandy.

Ingredients

  • 6 oz Amber or Pale Lager

  • 6 oz Sparkling Cloudy Lemonade

Directions

  • Half fill a pint glass with lemonade.
  • Fill the remaining half with beer.

Make Cocktails Like A Pro

If you have ever struggled with a recipe or wonder why yours are not turning out like they do at the bar then check out my simple step-by-step videos. I will walk you through how to expertly build each drink so you get consistently great results.

  • Free and simple step by step videos.
  • Tips and tricks from years of experience.
  • Historically accurate and balanced recipes.

Shandy – Delicious American Style Shandy (Still Lemonade)

Shandy (Still Lemonade)
Shandy (Still Lemonade)

The History Of The Shandy

The Shandy Gaff is the oldest known version of the shandy-style beer cocktails. The Shandy Gaff is a 1:1 strong or pale ale beer mixed with ginger beer. The earliest printed recipe I could find for the Shandy Gaff is in the 1888 Harry Johnson’s new And Improved Bartender’s Manual. Every recipe I can see from 1888 to 1972 refers to the cocktail as a Shandy Gaff and not simply a Shandy, and they are all made with beer and ginger ale. Although the most popular shandy mixer today is not ginger beer but lemonade. The kind of lemonade used depends on the region.

Americans use the more regionally typical non-carbonated lemonade (like a child’s lemonade stand-style lemonade), the British use clear carbonated lemonade (7Up or Sprite), and the german style uses the cloudy carbonated lemonades (Italian soda style lemonade). The German-style is my favorite way to make it. The first account I could find of the cocktail being called a shandy and make with sparkling lemonade is in a 1989 research paper by John Balding called “We Teach Them How to Drink!” Interestingly that research paper argues that British children will start drinking at young ages anyway, so parents need to teach them responsible ways to drink when they are young. The Shandy is described as gateway alcohol since it is so easy to drink.

The commonly told history of how the lemonade was first mixed with beer comes from Munich, Germany. The story goes that a Pub owner outside Munich was in danger of running out of beer when countless cyclists stopped at his pub for a drink. To avoid running out of beer, he mixed the local lager with lemonade and sold it as the Radlermass. Radlermass is german for “cyclist liter.” The other german name I find for beer and lemonade is Alsterwasser. This is a reference to the Alster River in northern Germany. The article referencing these two german shandies referred to them as tractor or field beers. They were intended as session drinks with a low ABV but enough sugar and calories so that they could be consumed while doing hard work. They could refresh and nourish a sweaty field worker without inhibiting them mentally.

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Download The Official Vintage American Cocktails App

Discover what classic cocktails you can make right now with the ingredients you have. Check out the Vintage American Cocktail app.

Shandy (American Style)

0 from 0 votes Only logged in users can rate recipes
Course: DrinksCuisine: American
Servings

1

servings
Calories

300

kcal
Total time

3

minutes

Learn how to make an American-style Shandy.

Ingredients

  • 6 oz Stong or Pale Ale

  • 6 oz Non-Carbonated Lemonade

Directions

  • Half fill a pint glass with lemonade.
  • Fill the remaining half with beer.

Make Cocktails Like A Pro

If you have ever struggled with a recipe or wonder why yours are not turning out like they do at the bar then check out my simple step-by-step videos. I will walk you through how to expertly build each drink so you get consistently great results.

  • Free and simple step by step videos.
  • Tips and tricks from years of experience.
  • Historically accurate and balanced recipes.

Buttered Beer #2 | Make This Tasty Modern Buttered Beer

Buttered Beer #2
Buttered Beer #2

A Short History Of Cooked Beer Cocktails.

Before the days of bottling and refrigeration, fresh beer had a very limited shelf life, and having to waste any brought a tear to many people’s eyes. So like any food item on its way out, people tried to find ways to get just a couple more uses out of it. I’m sure you do this all the time. Strawberries are starting to get soft; make a smoothie. Worried about your gigantic bag of onions getting too old, make French onion soup. There are many things you can do before food turns and during the 17th century cooking beer with honey and spices was one way to mask the flavor of a beer going bad.

Earlier forms of the hot ale flip we simple hot ale and honey drinks, and if you want to find these recipes, you’ll need to look in old cookbooks. One such recipe from the 1669 book “The Closet” by Sir Kenelme Digbie is an ale with a honey recipe specifically for beer that is about to go bad. Sir Kenelme Digbie described cooking old beer with honey would help the turned old beer and “set the whole a working a fresh, and casting out foulness.”

Some very old books had tips and tricks for the old food, but with the invention of commercial refrigeration in the mid-1800s, that stopped being such a big problem. Most of those recipes either got lost to time, but many still live on as things you usually eat—fruit pies, jellies, alcohol, pickles, hell, even banana bread. Hence, most recipes specifically call for nasty old soft brown bananas no one wants to eat. It’s for flavor, but it comes from a much older tradition. Old meat was a little harder to repurpose and was something you needed to persevere before it started to turn. Although old meat could be used as bait to catch fresh meat or go fishing, it must be disposed of once food goes truly bad.

The Right Beer Makes All The Difference.

Not all beer heat up well. Some taste amazing, and some are awful. As mentioned above, cooked beer cocktails like this were usually done to beers that started to turn and lose flavor. So any flavor improvement was an improvement over drinking old beer, but this gives us some interesting insights into which beers heat up best. Generally speaking, I have found that milder and less flavorful beers taste better hot than more robust, darker beers. Check out my article here, where I have taste-tested many different beers to see which make the best flips. What I have noticed is heating a beer up intensifies its flavors. So a beer that is already very flavorful and strong is amplified and becomes completely undrinkable, while a more mild and light beer opens up beautifully. So it makes sense that older beers that had lost some of their flavors made delicious warmed beer cocktails in the past.

Spiced Butter Batter Recipe.

  • 1/4 tsp (1.5 g) Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp (1.5 g) Ground Nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp (1.5 g) Ground Clove
  • 1/4 tsp (1.5 g) Ground Allspice (or 1/2 tbs: Allspice dram)
  • 1/2 tsp (2.5 g) Vanilla extract 
  • 1/2 cup (120 g) Brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (120 g) Unsalted butter
  1. On very low heat or using a double boiler, just melt the butter and then turn off the heat. Don’t cook and separate the butter. Just melt it.
  2. Next, add all the other ingredients to the melted butter.
  3. Stir till the brown sugar has thoroughly mixed in. Cover spiced butter batter and refrigerate.

This recipe will make about a cup (240 grams) of spiced butter batter mix, about 12 drinks. This is good on biscuits, too, and my kids love this spread on toast.

The Authenticity Of This Recipe.

This is not the classic 1594 buttered beer recipe (That recipe is right here). This is my take on a buttered beer. I wanted to make this a hot buttered beer version of an 18th-century Hot Buttered Rum style. I changed the butter part to use the hot buttered rum’s spiced butter batter instead of the butter and individual spices. I also fortified the beer with a single ounce of rum to add a little strength and extra flavor to the cocktail. I took a hot buttered rum and replaced the hot water with warm beer.

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Buttered Beer (Modern Recipe)

0 from 0 votes Only logged in users can rate recipes
Course: DrinksCuisine: American
Servings

1

servings
Calories

318

kcal
ABV

7%

Total time

3

minutes

Make a fantastic contemporary buttered beer

Ingredients

Directions

  • In a saucepan over low heat, combine all the ingredients except for the rum.
  • As the buttered beer heats, gently whisk to mix the beer and butter batter.
  • Turn off the heat once the beer is lightly warmed. Simply warm the beer. Do not make it hot.
  • Pour into a pint glass, add the rum, and serve.

Make Cocktails Like A Pro

If you have ever struggled with a recipe or wonder why yours are not turning out like they do at the bar then check out my simple step-by-step videos. I will walk you through how to expertly build each drink so you get consistently great results.

  • Free and simple step by step videos.
  • Tips and tricks from years of experience.
  • Historically accurate and balanced recipes.

Buttered Beer – Make This Delicious Original 1594 Recipe

Buttered Beer
Buttered Beer

A Short History of Cooked Beer Cocktails.

Before the days of bottling and refrigeration, fresh beer had a very limited shelf life, and having to waste any brought a tear to many people’s eyes. So like any food item on its way out, people tried to find ways to get just a couple more uses out of it. I’m sure you do this all the time. Strawberries are starting to get soft; make a smoothie. Worried about your gigantic bag of onions getting too old, make French onion soup. There are many things you can do before food turns and during the 17th century cooking beer with honey and spices was one way to mask the flavor of a beer going bad.

Earlier forms of the hot ale flip we simple hot ale and honey drinks, and if you want to find these recipes, you’ll need to look in old cookbooks. One such recipe from the 1669 book “The Closet” by Sir Kenelme Digbie is an ale with a honey recipe specifically for beer that is about to go bad. Sir Kenelme Digbie described cooking old beer with honey would help the turned old beer and “set the whole a working a fresh, and casting out foulness.”

Some very old books had tips and tricks for the old food, but with the invention of commercial refrigeration in the mid-1800s, that stopped being such a big problem. Most of those recipes either got lost to time, but many still live on as things you usually eat—fruit pies, jellies, alcohol, pickles, hell, even banana bread. Hence, most recipes specifically call for nasty old soft brown bananas no one wants to eat. It’s for flavor, but it comes from a much older tradition. Old meat was a little harder to repurpose and was something you needed to persevere before it started to turn. Although old meat could be used as bait to catch fresh meat or go fishing, it needs to be disposed of once food goes bad.

This Is The Oldest Known Buttered Beer Recipe.

The oldest known (and the only) buttered beer recipe is from the 1594 book “The good Huswifes Handmaide for the Kitchin” by Thomas Dawson. The recipe in the book is:

“Take three pintes of Beere, put fiue yolkes of Egges to it, straine them together, and set it in a pewter pot to the fyre, and put to it halfe a pound of Sugar, one penniworth of Nutmegs beaten, one penniworth of Cloues beaten, and a halfepenniworth of Ginger beaten, and when it is all in, take another pewter pot and brewe them together, and set it to the fire againe, and when it is readie to boyle, take it from the fire, and put a dish of sweet butter into it, and brewe them together out of one pot into an other.”

There are not any other buttered beer recipes after this one till J.K Rowling mentions them in her Harry Potter Book Series. One typically sees the Harry Potter versions today are usually cold butterscotch sodas and not a cooked beer cocktail.

The Right Beer Makes All The Difference.

Not all beer heat up well. Some taste amazing, and some are awful. As mentioned above, cooked beer cocktails like this were usually done to beers that started to turn and lose flavor. So any flavor improvement was an improvement over drinking old beer, but this gives us some interesting insights into which beers heat up best. Generally speaking, I have found that milder and less flavorful beers taste better hot than more robust, darker beers. Check out my article where I have taste-tested many different beers to see which make the best flips. What I have noticed is heating a beer up intensifies its flavors. So a beer that is already very flavorful and strong is amplified and becomes completely undrinkable, while a more mild and light beer opens up beautifully. So it makes sense that older beers that had lost some of their flavors made good warmed beer cocktails in the past.

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Download The Official Vintage American Cocktails App

Discover what classic cocktails you can make right now with the ingredients you have. Check out the Vintage American Cocktail app.

Buttered Beer (1594 Recipe)

0 from 0 votes Only logged in users can rate recipes
Course: DrinksCuisine: British
Servings

1

servings
Calories

420

kcal
ABV

4%

Total time

3

minutes

Make the original Buttered Beer from 1594

Ingredients

  • 16 oz Beer

  • 1 whole Egg Yolk

  • 2 oz Simple Syrup

  • 1 pinch Nutmeg

  • 1 pinch Cloves

  • 1 pinch Ginger

  • 1 tbsp Unsalted Butter

Directions

  • With the fire off, In a saucepan, combine all the ingredients except for the beer.
  • Whisk the ingredients together. Once combined add the beer and turn on the flame.
  • As the buttered beer heats, constantly whisk to prevent the yolk proteins from bonding together.
  • Turn off the heat once the beer is lightly warmed. Simply warm the beer. Do not make it hot.
  • Pour into a pint glass and serve.

Make Cocktails Like A Pro

If you have ever struggled with a recipe or wonder why yours are not turning out like they do at the bar then check out my simple step-by-step videos. I will walk you through how to expertly build each drink so you get consistently great results.

  • Free and simple step by step videos.
  • Tips and tricks from years of experience.
  • Historically accurate and balanced recipes.

Black And Tan – A Fantastic Classic 1891 Beer Cocktail

Black And Tan
Black And Tan

The Oldest Known Recipe I Could Find.

Believe it or not, this is a pretty old drink. The oldest recipe for it I could find is from the 1891 book “American Bar-Tender” by William Boothby of San Francisco, California. He gives three names for the same drink. He calls it a “Half and Half,” an “Arf an Arf,” and a “Black and Tan,” and all three are just half porter and half ale. He doesn’t specify exactly what kinds of ale or porter to use except for just ale and porter.

How to Layer Beer Step One: Gravity.

Layering is achieved by stacking different fluids based on gravity, from heaviest to lightest in order. By “gravity,” we mean the average atomic density of all the dissolved material and its molecules. Alcohol density is 789 kg/m³, water is 978 kg/m³, and sugar is 1586 kg/m³. The average gravity of an alcoholic drink is calculated based on the amount of these three combined items. As you can see, sugar is significantly the heaviest, water is in the middle, and alcohol is slightly lighter than water. So low sugar and high ABV spirits will have lower gravity than high sugar and low ABV liqueurs and thus will float on top.

Every different beer has a different gravity since they have different alcohol, water, and sugar combinations. So the trick is to either google each specific beer’s final gravity or experiment and physically try laying two beers. Thus not all Black and Tan are black on top and tan on the bottom. That all depends on the specific gravity of each beer (generally, there is a range for each type). Most pale ales are heavier than a porter like Guinness, but styles like IPA are often lighter than Guinness, which would result in a Black and Tan with the black on the bottom and the tan on top. To give a quick example, the gravity of Guinness is 1006 kg/m³, and the gravity of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale is 1.011 kg/m³; thus, the pale ale will sit at the bottom and the Guinness will float on top. Hell, even bud light is heavier than Guinness, but a beer like Asahi Super Dry has a final gravity of 1.005 kg/m³ so that it would sit on top (but barely). In my experience, though, Guinness is oddly lighter than anything else out there, and it’s the rare occurrence that any pale or brown ale is lighter than it, so it is usually safe just always to put Guinness on top.

Here is a handy chart on brewersfriend.com with the general range of gravities for each style of beer.

How to Layer Beer Step Two: Pouring.

Once you know the order, the next thing is the pour. Pour the first layer normal. I pour the first layer a little harder to try and agitate out some of the bubbles. Even though the first layer is heavier, the rising bubbles will force a bit of mixing and make the divide between the two beers less sharp. Once the bubbles of the first layer settle a bit, slowly pour over a bent spoon the second layer. This helps prevent the two layers from mixing and provides an excellent clean division.

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Discover what classic cocktails you can make right now with the ingredients you have. Check out the Vintage American Cocktail app.

Black & Tan (1891 Recipe)

0 from 0 votes Only logged in users can rate recipes
Course: DrinksCuisine: American
Servings

1

servings
Calories

208

kcal
ABV

6%

Total time

3

minutes

See how to make a Black and Tan beer cocktail

Ingredients

  • 8 oz Pale Ale

  • 8 oz Porter (Guinness)

Directions

  • Pour pale ale halfway up a pint glass.
  • Once bubbles settle, slowly pour the porter beer over a bent spoon to finish filling the glass.

Make Cocktails Like A Pro

If you have ever struggled with a recipe or wonder why yours are not turning out like they do at the bar then check out my simple step-by-step videos. I will walk you through how to expertly build each drink so you get consistently great results.

  • Free and simple step by step videos.
  • Tips and tricks from years of experience.
  • Historically accurate and balanced recipes.