Beer and booze were separated at birth. And I’m not just alluding to the obvious fact that they are both alcoholic. The actual fermentation process responsible for each is quite similar, reliant upon a fermented-sugar liquid, usually barley, to produce the buzz that we love so much. As craft distilling and craft brewing have ascended the ranks of popular culture over the past decade, it was perhaps inevitable that their paths would eventually converge. Nowadays many well-known breweries and distilleries are producing zany Frankenbrews like hopped whiskey, or whit-spiced rhum. And of course there’s always the rising trend of barrel-aged beer. So you have the choice of whiskey that drinks like a beer, or beer that tastes like bourbon. Either way, if you fancy yourself a beer geek or a distillery junky, you’ll want to familiarize yourself with this list of the 5 best blends available today…
5.) New Holland Brewing and Spirits, Hatter Royale Hopquila
This masterful misnomer is actually a white whiskey, consisting of double-distilled barley wash which is then bombarded with copious amounts of Centennial hops. The finished product has the grapfruity-goodness that you’d expect from the aroma of an IPA, but with the sharp, peaty finish of unaged whiskey. It’s great for sipping or to mix into some eccentric cocktails.
4.) Ram Restaurant & Brewery, Old Jack
This award-winning barrel-aged stout is as robust in flavor as it is rare and difficult to find.
3.) Dogfish Head Spirits, Whit Spiced Rhum
This ‘beer-inspired rum’ is crafted using orange peel and coriander, the flavors traditionally present in a Belgian style wit. The result is a a smooth drinking spirit that drinks like a heavier Hoegaarden.
2.) Lexington Brewing, Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale
This sipping beer has the nose of a fine Kentucky bourbon but with the vanilla, and caramel flavor that you might expect from a strong ale. At just over 8% ABV, it’s a dangerously drinkable beer.
1.) Charbay Winery and Distillery, Doubled and Twisted
This 99-proof Northern Californian Moonshine is made with batches of Racer 5 IPA that dazzles the tongue with a dose of hops, accompanying a subtle aroma of malt and barley. Unique in flavor and masterfully executed, you have to try it to believe it.