Ginger Beer is very important to me, it’s the vital ingredient in one of my top 3 Long Mixed Drinks, the Dark and Stormy, aka Rum & Ginger Beer. I’ve had my go to Ginger beer for a long time now. 5, 8, maybe even 10 years, but as there’s now loads on the market, I wanted just to do an experiment to find out for 100%, what is the best Ginger Beer, and which is my out and out favourite.
Was it going to be the one I’ve been using for all this time, or was there going to be a new pretender to the throne!?
Ginger Beer is still one of those really random Mixers. It’s kinda like Marmite with the cult following. I’ve yet to meet anyone who sits on the fence about it. You either love it or hate it.
And there’s another angle too. Pubs and Bars. For such a common drink, and a massive Cocktail (Dark & Stormy & Moscow Mules), I find that waaaay less than 50% of the Bars carry a Ginger Beer. The common reaction will be, we have Ginger Ale. NOOOO!!! It’s a different thing, and while its pleasant with Rum, it’s certainly no substitute.
Or the other reaction is, yeah we have this… *Bartender then precedes to point to the Alcoholic Crabbies in the Fridge!* Again NOOOOOOO. I could now go off on a Training Tangent right now, but I’ll resist. I’ll keep this all about Ginger Beer. As much as it pains me. As much as I want to rip the management of said establishment a new one. Okay, I’ll stop.
But, well, I don’t get why they just don’t carry a decent ginger beer for mixing with Rum or Vodka.
The Ginger Beer Contenders
Franklin & Sons
I could’ve added another 4 or 5, but these are the Ginger Beers you can find at most Supermarkets…OR…local wholesalers.
To carry out the experiment, I needed strict experiment conditions. Lots of Rum. Lots of Ginger Beer! Job Done!! Nope, in all seriousness, I lined up 6 glasses, measured out 5ml (it was 10:30am!!) of Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum. I thought this would be the best rum to get a good overview. Most Pubs/Bars will carry it. Every Supermarkets sell it. It tastes good. It’s a catch all. Then I mixed 15ml of the Ginger Beer. No Limes, No Ice, No Bitters. Just a straight Rum and Ginger Beer off.
The results were actually interesting. Although, I didn’t realise I disliked one of them as much as I did. I’ve never liked it, but alongside the other 5. WOW, yeah, it really ain’t good!
To view the results, watch the short video.
What’s the best Ginger Ale?
As a bonus, and while I had the Ginger out. I did also want to do a "Ginger Ale Off" to find what is the best Ginger Ale. Now, I have to say, this did surprise me. And went totally the opposite to what I was expecting.
As Ginger Ale is more of a Whiskey, Cognac Mixer, I obviously had to replicate experiment conditions, not only on the Sailor Jerry Rum, but with Courvoisier VSOP and Makers Mark. Sigh, another 9 drinks to try at 10:30am…on a Thursday!!
The Ginger Ale Contenders
Schweppes Ginger Ale
Fever Tree Ginger Ale
Schweppes 1783 Premium Golden Ginger
Now here’s the Funny thing. Mummy Barman was also here. Her Drink of choice is Cognac and Schweppes Canada Dry/Ginger Ale. She’s been drinking that for as long as I can remember. Despite my efforts to get her to try more premium Brands, her reply is always, "Nope, I prefer my Schweppes". So here was my chance.
I obviously knew what I was trying…and with all 3 Spirits, my favourite was the one I expected NOT to like. But I was unsure about Mum. So as I jumbled them up and got her to taste them blind, she picked out exactly what I picked out too.
Was it her favourite go to? The Ginger Ale she swears by? Or was it a different Ginger Ale she disliked previously?!
To find out, watch that Video!!