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In the world of beverages, few combinations have stood the test of time quite like the boilermaker. This classic duo, consisting of a shot of whisky and a pint of beer, has become a symbol of camaraderie, celebration, and a testament to the beauty that lies in simplicity. Let's delve into the history of the boilermaker combo and explore how this timeless pairing has become a beloved tradition in dive-bars and high-end cocktail lounges.


Stories are murky as to how the boilermaker first came into existence, but it’s pretty clear it was originally consumed by blue collar workers at the end of a long shift. 


It’s believed the drink takes its name from the workers who built and maintained steam locomotives in the 1800s. These workers were known to head to the bar at the end of a shift, take a shot of whisky followed by a crisp, cool beer. It quickly became a staple for boilermakers after a hard day.

Another versions takes us to Butte, Montana, in the late 1800s, a town known for its mining and blue-collar workforce. It is said that the boilermaker gained popularity in the local bars as these workers sought a quick and effective way to unwind after their demanding shifts. The lore surrounding where the official boilermaker originated from adds another interesting layer to this classic combination.


 Regardless of its exact origin, the boilermaker soon transcended its humble beginnings, becoming a mainstay in bars across the globe.


As with any classic, the boilermaker has evolved to pairings with Scotch, bourbon and rum. At Brix, you can often find our team enjoying a boilermaker, swapping whiskey for a dram of our small-batch Rums.

Reinventing the original boilermaker pair allows for playful flavour combinations to emerge, whilst maintaining the integrity of the textural contrast found in the classic combo.

When it comes to a Brix Rum Boilermaker, you'll experience a rich, full-body mouth feel alongside notes of caramel, vanilla and stonefruit which beautifully contrasts with the effervescent, malty quality that comes from the beer. The beautiful caramel notes add a layer of sweetness to balance the bitterness. 

The beauty of the boilermaker lies in its versatility, offering the opportunity to personalise the pairing to one's own palate.


On occasion, you can find the Brix team sipping a cheeky boilermaker at the bar. We've asked the team to share their go-to perfect pairing.


"I'd go Brix Cane Spirit with a Yulli's Brews Seabass Lager."

SHANE CASEY, Brix Head Distiller:

"Brix Select Cask Series, Tawny Finish & The Grifter Brewing's Omen Oatmeal Stout - it's rich and creamy.  Otherwise, I'd go Brix Australian Rum & Stone & Wood's Pacific Ale. It's a real banger with the light and bright stone fruit characteristics."

PAVEL NEUBERT, Brix Venue Manager: 

"I love a MoonDog XIII Stout and Brix Spiced Rum. Since this MoonDog release was aged in our Spiced Rum barrels, they're the perfect compliment as a boilermaker."

TOM LAMING, Brix Distiller:

"My combo would be Brix Australian Rum and a Cooper's Pale. 

I find Cooper's has this nice floral honey flavour which exactly compliments our Australian Rum."

JAN PRIBRAMSKY, Brix Distiller:

"My all time favourite definitely Brix Australian Rum with Yulli's Brews Slick Rick or Philter Red. Nice rich and malty beer yet not too overpowering, with some cool tropo notes compliments our Australian Rum's vanilla, cherry and candied orange flawlessly. Ultimate combo."

HADLEY ALTER, Brix Digital:

"If I'm ordering a boilermaker, I'm looking for something on the sweeter side. Our Citrus Got Real, Mandarin Liqueur with an Atomic Mando Sour has that light sweetness with bright, zesty mandarin notes."

We celebrate the boilermaker tradition every month down at Brix Bar by teaming up with a local Australian brewery. These specials run all month long, but the perfect pairings culminate in one night of fun & frivolity in one of our Boilermaker Nights. 

Click the button below to see who we're joining forces with for Boilermaker Night!


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