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Pouring a Black and Tan

Learn the Intricate Art of Pouring a Black and Tan Beer Perfectly

Black and tan is an interesting looking drink, wondering how it is made? Follow the steps mentioned in this article, to learn pouring a black and tan drink perfectly...
Pragya T
Last Updated: Mar 6, 2018
Black and tan is a popular two-layered drink. In this drink the two layers consist of two different beers. The bottom half layer of the drink called tan, is a light beer which is either a Bass Pale Ale or Harp's Lager. The upper half layer of the drink known as black is Guinness. Choice of tan which is Bass Pale Ale or Harp's Lager, depends on the bar or bartender. The Guinness Stout and Bass Pale Ale have different densities, or in other words specific gravity's.
Both the layers remain one on top of the other, and black Guinness floating atop the tan Bass Pale ale, creates a dramatic appearance of the drink. When one tilts the angle to drink the beer, the heavier beer will slide along the angle of the glass so that both the brews can be tasted by the person simultaneously. When one sets the glass down, both the layers still remain intact, as they have different densities.
Hence, one can enjoy a truly unique taste of both the brews, and admire the two layered, black and tan look of the drink too. Perfect black and tan pouring is a skill displayed by professional bartenders. However, practicing the tips mentioned below you can master pouring this drink.
The origin of black and tan drink can be found in many British pubs, when the mixing of draft bitter and dark stout started appearing. As pouring these two ales was quite easy to learn, the popularity of the beer started increasing. Many people say that black and tan appeared in 1889, but proof of existence of this beer can also be found in the 17th century.
So, gather a tablespoon, a Guinness Stout for the dark layer, and for the tan layer of the drink grab a bottle of Bass Pale Ale or Harp's Lager beer. Use a beer glass, to pour the drinks with the help of the below steps. You can practice using a smaller glass, and once you achieve perfection, make the drink in large glasses.
  1. First pour the light-colored beer directly into a beer glass. Pour slowly and steadily, till the glass is half filled. Now, the tan portion of your drink is complete.
  2. Then bend a tablespoon so that the scoop part lies at a right angle to the stem. Pour the dark stout or porter slowly and steadily into the spoon, and keep pouring till the liquid is one inch away from the top ring of the glass. Many people keep the spoon in a concave-up position, while pouring the black beer portion, but both the methods work perfectly.
  3. Now, look at the drink and admire the contrasting black and tan colors. And enjoy savoring the unique taste of the black and tan drink.
So, practice a couple of times the above steps, till you learn how to fill a glass perfectly. Then serve it to your guests, and enjoy their compliments.