By Lori Fredrich Senior Food Writer, Dining Editor, Podcast Host Published Jun 10, 2020 at 1:01 PM Photography: Lori Fredrich

What's better than Sprecher root beer, a versatile beverage that appeals to the "kid" in all of us? 

But did you know that our hometown root beer makes a great base for a variety of cocktails?

In case the idea of a root beer cocktail strikes you with a sense of intrigue, but you haven’t the slightest idea how to make one at home, I’m rounding up some ideas that you can easily whip up with ingredients from your own home bar.

1. Ultra easy root beer highball

You don’t need myriad ingredients to make a great spiked root beer drink, and these combinations are proof of that. Each one requires just two ingredients, which can be poured together over ice.

2 ounces bourbon, rum, spiced rum, vodka or Fireball
6 ounces Sprecher Root Beer
Optional: garnish with orange peel or sprig of mint

Just pour the spirit into an ice-filled Collins-style (tall) glass, add the root beer and stir slowly to incorporate (you don’t want to destroy the carbonation by agitating it too much). Garnish and serve.

Notes on your choice of spirit:

  • Bourbon: The rootbeer dampens the sweetness of the bourbon, pulling out notes of vanilla and anise
  • Rum: Underscores the vanilla flavor in both the rum and the root beer
  • Spiced rum: Capitalizes on the spices in the root beer
  • Vodka: Gives you a spiked drink that lets the root beer shine
  • Vanilla vodka: Offers flavor that’s bit like a root beer float
  • Fireball whiskey: Enhances the spiciness of the root beer

2. Root beer old fashioned

4 ounces SoulBoxer Brandy Old Fashioned
Sprecher Root Beer
Optional: garnish with skewered orange and cherry

Pour SoulBoxer into an ice-filled rocks glass. Top with root beer. Garnish and serve.

3. Root beer White Russian

1 ounce vodka
1 ounce Kahlua or other coffee liqueur
1 ounce cream
Sprecher root beer

Place the vodka, coffee liqueur and cream into a shaker with ice. Shake to combine. Strain into a short (rocks) glass filled with ice, leaving some room at the top. Top with root beer.

4. Boozy root beer "float"

3 ounces cream liqueur (Milk & Honey, Rumchata or Kringle Liqueur)
Sprecher Root Beer

Fill a rocks glass with ice. Pour cream liqueur over the ice and top with root beer.

Lori Fredrich Senior Food Writer, Dining Editor, Podcast Host

Lori is an avid cook whose accrual of condiments and spices is rivaled only by her cookbook collection. Her passion for the culinary industry was birthed while balancing A&W root beer mugs as a teenage carhop, fed by insatiable curiosity and fueled by the people whose stories entwine with each and every dish. She’s had the privilege of chronicling these tales via numerous media, including OnMilwaukee and in her book “Milwaukee Food.” Her work has garnered journalism awards from entities including the Milwaukee Press Club. 

When she’s not eating, photographing food, writing or recording the FoodCrush podcast, you’ll find Lori seeking out adventures with her husband Paul, traveling, cooking, reading, learning, snuggling with her cats and looking for ways to make a difference.