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922 South Morton Street
Bloomington, IN, 47403
United States

812-202-6789

Cardinal Spirits is a craft distillery in Bloomington, Indiana that specializes in producing extraordinary spirits from local ingredients.  

The Drop

The Drop is your source for all things craft. 

Meet: Black Bear Bierschnaps

Devynn Barnes

Black Bear Bierschnaps — our collaboration with Upland Brewing — is here,
in all its smooth, malty, chocolatey glory.

If you've never heard of bierschnaps, you're not alone. This stuff is deliciously rare in the US. If you're curious about it, you've come to the right place. Right this way to the dark side...

First things first: Black Bear Bierschnaps (750ml, $28) is available starting today, Friday, Oct. 28, at Cardinal Spirits — and, in mid-November, it will available to buy alongside Teddy Bear Kisses stout at Big Red Liquor stores.

Here's everything else you need to know about Black Bear Bierschnaps:

WHAT IS IT?

Black Bear Bierschnaps is a distilled stout — a collaboration with Upland Brewing Co. in Bloomington. It's is made with Upland’s Teddy Bear Kisses stout, which we brewed together with Upland brewers, then fermented and distilled on site at Cardinal Spirits.

WHAT IS BIERSCHNAPS, ANYWAY?

Bierschnaps is a German spirit that is made from beer which is brewed and fermented, then distilled to a stronger strength and more intense flavor. We used Teddy Bear Kisses, Upland’s award-winning Russian imperial stout aged on cacao nibs. It is a big, bold beer that is velvety, complex and roasty, and that profile is gloriously intensified in Black Bear Bierschnaps.  

HOW DID WE MAKE IT, EXACTLY?

Upland and Cardinal brewed a special batch of Teddy Bear Kisses seasonal stout, which was then fermented and distilled on-site at Cardinal Spirits.

Before fermentation, a bit of the wort was set aside and boiled down to a rich, dark-roasted malt syrup. Finally, the wort syrup, distilled stout, and original stout were blended together to bring you... drumroll please... BIERSCHNAPS.

The base of Black Bear Bierschnaps is Teddy Bear Kisses, Upland’s award-winning Russian imperial stout aged on cacao nibs. It is a big, bold beer that is velvety, complex and roasty, and that profile is gloriously intensified in Black Bear Bierschnaps.  

HOW TO DRINK IT?

Bierschnaps is traditionally enjoyed on its own and ice cold, either as a shot or sipped as a digestif. Black Bear Bierschnaps is a “bartenders’ handshake” type of spirit like Fernet or Malört — a shot that bartenders pour for each other. It’s also great alongside a beer, in a spiked root beer float or mixed into cocktails.

At the distillery, we'll serve it as a shot and you get to keep the glass. We'll also have two specialty cocktails: Paddington Flip, with Tiki Rum, Bierschnaps, raspberry and egg white; and Blood, Sweat & Biers, with Bierschnaps, grapefruit, lemon, cassis and orgeat.

Bierschnaps is delicious as it is intriguing, but don't just take our word for it. Come in and see for yourself.