More commonly referred to as IPA, the India Pale Ale is a hop forward style originally developed for export from England to India. The antiseptic nature of hops makes it a natural preservative, which helped enhance the self-like of the beer as it endured the long boat voyage around the continent of Africa.
Although conceptually similar to their English cousins, American IPAs are characterized by the use of American hops, which yield aromas of citrus, pine and resin. They boast medium-high to very high hop bitterness, very light malt character, significant carbonation and a dry finish.
And this brings us to tequila.When it comes to buying tequila, products with 100% agave are by far the most preferred and highest quality on the market. Un-aged (aka Blanco) tequila is known for being floral, citrusy, and slightly bitter — making directly complimentary to the American IPA.
For beer cocktails, I almost always prefer using Reposado tequila, which is Blanco tequila that has been aged in wooden casks for at least two months, but sometimes as long as one year. In my opinion, the oak softens the abrasive nature of the spirit, adding much desired hints of vanilla and fruit, such as pear and melon.
The inspiration for this particular cocktail comes from “The Margarita” — quite possibly the most famous tequila based drink in the world. Instead of using sour mix, which I loathe more than anything, this cocktail was formulated using only fresh, raw and well-crafted ingredients — and I do not recommend substitution. This particular preparation calls for “rocks” but it can also be served up.
- 1.5 oz. Reposado Tequila
- .5 oz. Gran Marnier
- 1 oz. fresh lime juice
- .25 oz. agave nectar
- 3 oz. American IPA
- lime wedge
Fill rocks glass to the top with ice. Pour tequila, Gran Marnier, lime juice, agave nectar over ice. Add to shaker, shake lightly and pour all ingredients back into rocks glass. Top with IPA, give a quick stir, and garnish with lime wedge.