Hot wine drinks are common throughout the world, but hot beer? Not so much. There is a history of hot beer drinks dating back to Colonial days where hot ale was served at taverns in the winter, but in the last few hundred years we haven't seen much of them in America.
Perhaps the time is right for a hot beer cocktail revival, especially with all the delicious microbrews available these days.
The drink below was created by John Codd of the restaurant Wo Hing General Store in San Francisco, who took advantage of an oatmeal stout beer to create the Rum and Oates. The oatmeal flavor in the beer really shines through, and totally makes the drink. The rum, taking a background note, fortifies the drink, and the vermouth sweetens and adds richness. Add a bit of cinnamon and whipped cream to that and you've got one delicious hot beer cocktail.
A few notes on ingredients: Pampero rum is a rich, aged rum. You can substitute another aged rum; just make sure it's aged rather than just dark. The particular vermouth called for in this recipe is very rich and flavorful, unlike any other brand on the market. It's really worth seeking out, but when you use it in a Manhattan or other recipes, you'll typically use less than you would a regular sweet vermouth. The chocolate mole bitters are a really nice touch but probably not essential to the drink if you can't find them.
Rum and Oats
By John Codd of Wo Hing General Store
8 fl. oz. Hot Oatmeal Stout
1.5 fl. oz. Pampero Rum
.5 fl. oz. Carpano Antica Vermouth
.5 fl. oz. Cinnamon Syrup
1 dash Angostura Bitters
1 dash Bitter Truth Xocolatl Mole Chocolate Bitters
Add all ingredients to heat-resistant glass and top with whipped cream. Grate cinnamon over top of the drink.
For the cinnamon syrup, you can use a store-bought one or easily make your own.
4 cups water
4 cups sugar
8-10 cinnamon sticks
Simmer for about ten minutes, cool, and store in the refrigerator between uses. You can leave the cinnamon sticks in or strain them out.