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The Overserved Society Presents: The Flip

The Overserved Society is a Chicago-based website dedicated to the art of the cocktail. When Midwestern tipplers Blake Royer and Seth Putnam can’t find a recipe for a given drink that quite satisfies, they start experimenting. They tinker for a month before holding an event to celebrate good friends and share the final product of their experiment. This month, they tackled beer cocktails.

We love a good comeback: The resurrection of a canceled television show; an injured athlete taking to the court again; summer’s triumphant return. This July, we staged our own revival, with our first event since 2012. It was our friend Michael Kiser (who runs Good Beer Hunting) who had the idea to collaborate on this hops-based departure from our regularly scheduled cocktailing.

The history of beer cocktails isn't just a recent fad. In the 17th century, one of the earliest recorded mixed drinks used beer. Called the Flip, the cocktail was originally made with a mixture of ale, rum, sugar, and nutmeg. It was mixed in a punch bowl, heated with a red hot poker, and then served warm and fizzy.

Over the years, beer was eliminated, the ratio of eggs and sugar increased, and the drink was served cold rather than hot. Still, a century later, pre-Prohibition barmen topped their local ale with grated nutmeg in a nod to that earlier concoction.

We decided to create our own rendition of the Flip—but one that is cold, cold, cold! We based our version on a local ale, Revolution Brewing's "Anti-Hero" IPA, which we paired with Old Overholt rye whiskey, Amaro, and a nutmeg-infused simple syrup that steeped overnight.

We also came up with our own original beer cocktail using another local brew, Solemn Oath's "Lil' Spitfire" Belgian blonde. (Blondes, it turns out, are always the recipe for a successful party, whether they're Belgian or otherwise.) We christened this libation the "Flying Ace" and built it around gin, honey syrup, and lemon juice.

The Overserved Society's Flip

1 oz rye whiskey
3/4 oz amaro
1/4 oz simple syrup (1:1 sugar and water)
India Pale Ale to taste

Technique: Stir the whiskey, amaro and simple syrup in a tin full of ice. Strain into a highball glass and top off with India Pale Ale.

The Flying Ace

1 oz London dry gin
3/4 oz lemon juice
1/2 oz honey syrup (1:1 honey and water)
Belgian blonde ale to taste

Technique: In a pitcher, pre-mix the liquor base according to how many guests you'll be serving. Shake the base with ice before distributing evenly among your assembled glasses. Top with Belgian blonde ale.

One final rule: A party is only as good as its soundtrack. Here, our playlist, curated by’s Mike Pietrus: Overserved Society: The Flip (7.12.13)

Check out the full collection of recipes from the Overserved Society.

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