The Liquor Cabinet

Level up your lager at aperitivo hour with the Beer Americano

Choosing between a refreshing beer and a fancy aperitivo? Get the best of both with a Beer Americano – it subs lager for the soda in the classic Campari drink.

With our sunburnt nation already famously fond of a cold one, it’s no surprise that we’re now firm fans of a beer cocktail. Sure, the combination may sound a little strange, but don’t knock it till you try it, especially if you’re a lover of the hop-heavy flavour of beer. The Beer Americano is a good intro to the world of beer cocktails, combining bitter Campari, sweet vermouth and beer (of course). While you could use any beer of choice, we’d suggest a light, clean option that won’t dominate, like this Japanese-style lager from Melbourne’s Brick Lane Brewing.

How to make a Beer Americano cocktail

Ingredients (serves 4)


125mL Campari

125mL Cinzano Rosso sweet vermouth

4 cups crushed ice

2 x 355ml cans Brick Lane Hi-Fi Dry Japanese No Carb Lager




  1. Combine the Campari and Cinzano Rosso in a jug with ice and stir. 
  2. Fill 4 beer glasses with ice, then pour over the cocktail.
  3. Top with lager and serve immediately.


TIP: for an extra ‘foamy’ top, pour one-third of the lager into a cocktail shaker and shake for 1 min or until foamy, then carefully remove the lid before pouring.

A brief history of the Beer Americano


While a Beer Americano may sound like a modern invention, it’s not (we promise) – it was dreamt up by luxury fashion house Trussardi in Milan for shoppers to enjoy at their flagship boutique’s resident bar. Bartender Tommaso Cecca introduced a few twists on traditional Italian cocktails among his drinks menu, including this Beer Americano. While the typical Americano is a mix of Campari, sweet vermouth and soda water, the Beer Americano swaps the soda for a light beer. The result is a summer-ready drink that’s seriously refreshing – think bitter in the base, but with the subtle taste of hops. And don’t forget the key element – plenty of foam on top!

This is what you’ll need to make your own Beer Americano


Think Americano – but swap the traditional soda water for some foamy ale. As tradition dictates, the basis of any Americano – beer or no beer – is the bitter Italian liqueur Campari Aperitif. Deep red in shade, and zesty on the tongue, it’s a refreshing drop that’s just as delicious over ice as it is in a cocktail. Not forgetting the vermouth of course – in this case, Cinzano Rosso, which has delicate flavours of vanilla, black cherry and a touch of creamy caramel. It is, of course, not a beer cocktail without the beer. It’s best to stick to something light and crisp in flavour (avoid any dark ales like Guinness) so that the bitter Campari and co aren’t drowned out. We’ve chosen the Brick Lane Hi-Fi Dry Japanese No Carb Lager, a super clean, zero-carb beer with subtle notes of crisp red apple, sweet malt and herbal hops.

If you like the Beer Americano, you’ll love these other cocktails


If you’ve enjoyed your dabble into the world of beer cocktails, you’ll be chuffed to hear that there are plenty more to enjoy, like these 5 beer cocktails inspired by Aussie sporting legends. And as for aperitivo, traditional Italian cocktails are endless. There’s the crowd-pleasing Aperol spritz, and the similar Campari-based celebration, the Negroni – a drink so adored that it’s launched a devoted Negroni Week.

Powered by