LA’s classy new approach to the Boilermaker

A collaboration between craft beer specialists and a downtown whiskey bar has led to a new look at the beer cocktail.

A sports bar staple, the Boilermaker (a beer cocktail consisting of a glass of beer and a shot of whiskey, tequila, or vodka), has classed up thanks to a collaboration between beer connoisseurs Hallie Beaune and Christina Perozzi, who call themselves the Beer Chicks, and downtown whiskey bar Seven Grand (7G).

Their new Boilermaker cocktail menu, available at 7G, showcases different combinations of craft beer paired with quality whiskey. Take your pick from tasty concoctions like the Chubby Mr Berns (Seven Grand Bernheim Wheat Whiskey with Old Chub Scotch Ale) or the Abominable Scot (Bowmore “Legend” Islay Malt with Great Divide Yeti Stout).

“We designed it so that the whiskey is going to bring out the notes of the beer and the beer is going to bring out the notes in the whiskey. They’re enlivening each other,” explained Seven Grand spirit guide Pedro Shanahan.

The cocktail arrives with the beer and spirit in separate Old Fashioned glasses, not the shot and pint glasses you’d expect. Drinkers should not shoot the drinks, but instead sip each one (whiskey first) to appreciate how their flavours mingle together.

It’s a different way to drink a cocktail but as Hallie Beaune explained, “When a pairing is good it creates a new flavour. And some of these combinations create a whole new experience when you have them together.”

The menu will change regularly to showcase seasonal beers, with the current winter menu featuring heavier stouts and porters.

For those who want to try this at home, the Beer Chicks have created kits containing a bottle of whiskey and a bottle of beer packaged in a cardboard carrying case. These are available for sale at their store, 8th Street Bottle Shop, where you can also try unique beer and whiskey pairings which are not available at the bar.

Caroline Pardilla is the Los Angeles Localite for BBC Travel. She also writes

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