Fall is right around the corner. Right? It still feels like summer in DC, even though we’re nearly halfway through September. But when it does eventually arrive, fall in DC is usually gorgeous: clear and crisp and bright. So my plan is to start shifting away from summer cocktails and start talking about fall cocktails, a bit crisper and darker than what you’d find in the summer. I find that beer is a great ingredient for these sorts of transitional cocktails: heavier, richer, but still effervescent. So this week we’re playing around with some fun lambic beer for our season opener, the Stone Wall. – Andrew
Illustration by Shauna Lynn for Oh So Beautiful Paper
The Stone Wall
1 1/2 oz Bourbon
1 oz Apple Cider
6 oz Peach or Raspberry Lambic Beer
3 Dashes Aromatic Bitters
Combine the bourbon, cider, and bitters in an ice-filled highball glass. Top with the beer and give the glass a gentle stir. Enjoy!
Lambic beer is part of a special family of beers – wild beers, mostly brewed in Belgium but a few over here in the States. Most beers today are fermented using strains of cultivated brewers yeast, but for many centuries before the discovery of yeast beers were fermented by wild bacteria and yeasts. Lambics are still made this way, exposing the raw ingredients of beer to the open air and letting wild strains work their magic. The result is a sharply tart and dry brew, so most lambics are flavored or fermented with fruits to sweeten and balance the sourness. (They’re not stocked in every liquor store, but ask around and check for big pint-sized bottles on back shelves. They’re worth a try.)
So the Stone Wall – a play on the very classic and perfect-for-fall Stone Fence – combines sweet, oaky bourbon and sweet, mellow apple cider with a lip-smacking, sweet-tart blast of fizzy lambic. The lambic’s summer fruit notes help add sweetness, balance, and a sense seasons changing. Plus, it’s still tall and cold and carbonated enough to feel refreshing if the weather’s still as muggy as ours. You know, versatile.
Photo Credits: Nole Garey for Oh So Beautiful Paper