Black Velvet Cocktail – Spice Up Your Stout!

Harry Lambourne
3rd February 2022

We’re always looking out for a new and exciting champagne cocktail and this Black Velvet cocktail is most certainly that.

I first tried this at Riddle & Finn’s. This Brighton seafood restaurant, (more specifically a Champagne and Oyster Bar), recommended it as the perfect companion for oysters and they were right! It came in a rather striking silver pewter tankard, but don’t worry it’s still tasty in regular old Champagne flute.

This drink actually dates back to the Victorian period. It’s said that a bartender created this to commemorate the passing of Queen Victoria’s dear Prince Albert. They float the black stout on top of the champagne, supposedly symbolising a black armband often worn by mourners, as “even the champagne should be in mourning”.

This layered, striking drink should not be overlooked. This drink that is often paired with oysters can be enjoyed with an abundance of ultra-fresh fish, or may simply be enjoyed alone. Half Guinness, (or stout of your choosing), half sparkling white wine – all delicious. Let’s look at how to make this wonderfully simple cocktail.

Ingredients for a Black Velvet Cocktail

First of all, let’s begin with the ingredients. Luckily, there aren’t many!

  • 75ml of sparkling white wine, (we used Crémant)
  • 75ml of stout, (we used Guinness)

The only other piece of wine kit that you need for a Black Velvet cocktail is a glass. As we mentioned, you can serve it in a pewter tankard. Pewter imparts a certain hard to pin down tangy flavour to ale and beer. This slight tang adds another layer of flavour when you’re necking back oysters and explains it’s use there. However, it’s not a necessary piece of kit for a Black Velvet cocktail. A champagne flute will do just fine. If you want to know the benefits of flutes versus coupes you can read our full article on the topic right here.

How To Make a Black Velvet Cocktail

  1. Pour the Crémant into a wine flute, until it’s about half full.
  2. Slowly pour the stout on top, until it fills the glass. 
  3. Don’t be afraid if the two layers separate. Simply slowly stir to combine.

The instructions are really that simple. A traditional Black Velvet cocktail calls for layering. In that case you could pour the Guinness over the back of a bar spoon.

However, if you’re going to be having more than one, (which wouldn’t surprise me), sometimes the easiest route is best.

Black Velvet Cocktail Tasting Notes

The Black Velvet cocktail certainly has a unique taste. The big acidic flavours of the sparkling wine dissect the rich and creamy stout. The end result being a really frothy and decadent mouthfeel. Stout also tends to posses coffee and chocolate notes. When this is paired with the bread-like, biscuit notes from the Crèmant, the end result is somewhat savoury and truly refreshing, in spite of its rich character.

Black Velvet Cocktail
Black Velvet Cocktail

There you have it! A wonderfully simple cocktail that is sure to get heads turning and mouths watering at any party you attend. If you want to read our full list of Champagne cocktails, then you can find out more recipes here.

Fizz not your thing? Read our recipe for a New York Sour by clicking here!

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