What’s better than a single puzzle box? Why, a double box, of course. Japanese artisit Akio Kamei loves to play with conceptual ideas and bring them to reality in his work. For example, what if a box is only open when it is closed, and closed when it is open? Kamei brought this idea to life with the “Double Box”. To toast this mischievous marvel I’m taking a bit of poetic license for the potion pairing by using a dopplebock – the doubly strong German lager style beer known for being rich, malty, lightly hopped and associated with goats. This last bit is a due to a bit of linguistic liberty which evolved from the origins of this beer in 14th century Einbeck Germany. The Einbeck style was adapted in 17th century Bavaria as a lager, where it was pronounce “ein bock” due to the slightly different Bavarian accent. An ein bock is a billy goat, and ever since, boch labels have sported the sprightly fellows. The dopplebock, or double bock, is a stronger version of the traditional boch style, originated by the Franciscan Paulaner Friars to serve as “liquid bread” during times of fasting.


Here’s a doubly delicious dose of double bock, courtesy of Howard and Ashley Stelzer from their book “Beer Cocktails”. It combines a rich and almost chocolatey dopplebock with cherry preserves and rum to create a decadent dessert drink reminiscent of Black Forrest Cake. This is one bock you’ll definitely want to open, even if your other bocks stay closed. Cheers!

The Bishop’s Wife by Howard Stelzer

1 ½ oz dark rum

2 tbsp. cherry preserves

4 oz chilled dopplebock

quarter lime

Muddle the preserves, lime and rum together and shake with ice. Strain into a favorite glass and top with the chilled beer. Garnish with a double lime wedge.


For more about the paradoxical Double Box see:

Boxes and Booze: Double Trouble

For a prior beer cocktail:

Pleasant Porters