Sometimes inspiration comes from odd places. Like drinking beer on your porch in the dark while listening to the Ink Spots for example. We’ve all been there right? Well even if you don’t know who the Ink Spots are I’m sure you have something similar with a band and a beverage you’re fond of.

Pelapaha (1)

We’ve always loved beer here and craft beer is a passion of mine. I spend so much time critiquing cocktails and wine, but with beer I can relax and just enjoy what a brewer has to offer. One of our favorite styles is the Marzen beers so popular in the Autumn season, however it is a rather difficult beer to make a cocktail with. They are so malty and sweet, sometimes they can really unbalance a drink because few common ingredients mix well with earthy cereal notes. Pelapaha (2)


Luckily we had some Campari handy, along with a hearty measure of coffee syrup. I wanted to name the drink after the Ink Spots song I was listening to when I came up with it but it wasn’t Tiki enough, so we used the Hawaiian translation as a name. We also used the two easiest to find Marzen’s in our market when making the drink, hopefully this will give you an easier time when recreating it.

Pelapaha (3)

Pela Paha (Maybe…)

1 oz El Dorado 5 year

1 oz Campari

½ oz fresh lime

½ oz coffee syrup

4 oz Marzen beer (Sam Adams Oktoberfest or Yuengling Oktoberfest)

Shake together everything but the beer. Strain into a stemmed glass and stir the beer in. Garnish with a green apple fan.

The drink has aromas of Campari, espresso, caramel, and tartness from the green apple. The bitterness of the Campari matches well with the sweetness of the Marzen. Flavors of bitter orange, sweet smoke, hints of coffee and an unmistakable twinge of cinnamon fill the mouth. The Yuengling Oktoberfest gave the drink a distinct earthiness but lost some of the cinnamon and caramel notes that the Sam Adams added.

We hope you’ll enjoy some beer Tiki this week. There is at least some precedent for beer Tiki in the Strip and Go Naked cocktail which you can find in Jeff Berry’s Remixed. What your favorite beer style? Let us know and until next time…

“You get hammered America” – JFL