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The Black & Tan gets its name from the two distinct colors. On the bottom, a nice tan looking pale ale. On top, a dark stout.

Here’s the thing, not all stouts will float and not all pale ales will hold a stout up. Bass Ale and Guinness Stout are the ‘original’ beers in the recipe and they work. If you want to try something else, go for it! Experiment! Then share with us what worked (and what didn’t).

Note: don’t order a Black & Tan in Ireland. It’s an American drink named for it’s colors. Plus, in Ireland, the Black & Tans were a violent group in the Irish War of Independence (1919-1921).

Black & Tan

Recipe by JennCourse: cocktailDifficulty: easy


Prep time






  • 6 oz Pale Ale Beer (Bass Ale works well)

  • 6 oz Stout Beer (Guinness Stout works well)


  • Pour pale ale into a glass.
  • Float the stout on top.
  • Enjoy!


  • How do you “float”?

    Take bar spoon and hold it upside down in the glass near the pale ale. Pour the stout onto the back of the spoon, slowly. As the liquid in the glass rises, raise the spoon.

    Your stout should not mix with your pale ale. If it does, you’re probably pouring too quickly. Pause and slow down.

Two In One

Pin This - Black & Tan Cocktail Recipe

A Black & Tan is like having two beers at once, with only a couple of mouthfuls fo both together. First, you’ll enjoy a stout. Then you’ll enjoy a pale ale.

Share the brands that work for you (and the ones that fail) in the comments!

Want another cocktail? Check out my Grasshopper Recipe next.

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