Whoa. Say hello to the manliest fizzy pink cocktail of all time. Actually, I prefer the more unisex “most suited for grown ass adults who like to drink like adults fizzy pink cocktail of all time.” It’s a mouthful, but it’s accurate: what we have here is sheer sophistication.
There are only three ingredients, and all of them are fragrant and delicately fruity, with a bitter bite. Naturally, if you throw them all into the sandbox (or a cocktail glass), they play nicely.
I really wasn’t sure this would work, but I nearly cried tears of joy when it did. There’s a lot of fun to be had with beer as a cocktail ingredient, whether you’re looking for a light maltiness or big, bold flavor, as is the case here with IPA. Trivia bit: India Pale Ale was created out of necessity–more hops and more alcohol in traditional English pale ales meant they could be shipped to India without spoiling.
(Personal sidenote: There was once a time when the initials IPA immediately made me think of the International Phonetics Alphabet–when I was busy studying linguistics, not drinking. Times have… changed.)
As for Aperol, it’s an Italian aperitif, much like Campari, but lower in alcohol content. It’s often combined with prosecco to make spritzers. Citrusy, herbal, bitter and bright, it’s just sweet enough to balance the tartness of pomegranate and hoppy IPA bitterness.
I’m not usually this pushy, but… If you are an IPA/bitters fan, I really really pretty please really would love for you to try this. Please. I can already picture you throwing a tres chic New Year’s bash and serving up these bad boys like the dashing host/ess you are. Bonus: You can definitely get prosecco and make spritzers for everyone else. All will be happy. There will be smiles and glitter and slurred, adoring “I love you”s for you in store. Trust.
P.S. I think we need a fun name for this drink. Suggestions?
IPA Cocktails with Aperol and Pomegranate
1/4 cup fresh pomegranate seeds
1 shot (1 1/2 if you prefer sweeter drinks) Aperol
1 12-oz bottle of a good, hoppy IPA (I used Red Hook)
In a cocktail shaker, muddle the pomegranate seeds with a bit of the Aperol. Pour in the rest of the Aperol and stir or shake well. Strain into two ice-filled 6- or 8-oz cocktail glasses and top off with IPA. (Makes 2 cocktails)