I bought a 6 pack of Shock Top last night and is suggests on the package to make a drink they are calling a "Choc-Top." The pack comes with 3 Belgian Wheat normal Shock Tops and 3 Chocolate Wheat beers.

I've looked around online and seen a bunch of pictures of nicely layered beverages. How do I acheive this layering when pouring my beer into a glass?

  • 2
    Suggestion: change this to "How do I properly layer a black-and-tan"? Since Shock Top Choc-top sounds like it's just a black and tan with their beer. Jan 31, 2014 at 23:23
  • I got that pack once too...wasn't a fan of the chocolate wheat. I tried to layer it as well without success. But I'd try it with a pouring spoon as shown here youtube.com/watch?v=HFmGU8vcIF0 Feb 1, 2014 at 0:07
  • @Fishtoaster I'd go as far as to make it more generic. "Black and Tan" in my mind generally means Guinness and Bass, "Half and Half" may be more correct, though usually refers to Guinness and Harp. Perhaps something along the lines of "How do I get good separation when layering beers?"
    – Ryan Kinal
    Feb 4, 2014 at 18:40

2 Answers 2


As mentioned by @Fishtoaster (and as depicted in the cat gif) pouring over the back of a spoon is definitely a must - you really want to make sure none of the top layer breaks into the bottom layer.

There are a few other ways to make your layering more effective as well.

As seen in the animated gif, a curved beer glass is used. Ideally, you want it to have this shape

(source: kegerator.com)

If you use a regular pint glass it will have a greater potential of mixing the layers.

A common mistake when making these layers is to get as close to 50% as possible. The downside is that as you drink it, it will mix with these portions. Ideally, you should be looking at a 70% base, 30% top in order to have and maintain two defined layers.

  • 1
    The 70/30 ratio is interesting, and makes a lot of sense. As far as glasses go, a tulip glass generally works pretty well too.
    – Ryan Kinal
    Feb 4, 2014 at 17:15
  • 1
    @Ryan - Yeah the tulip glasses work as well :) Really any glass will work, it is just harder if there isn't much of a bend in it.
    – Travis J
    Feb 4, 2014 at 17:22

Pour it over the back of a spoon

As with any layered beer, your goal is to reduce the velocity of the top beer as it hits the bottom beer. So, pour it over the back of a spoon to split the stream up into smaller rivulets (which won't push as far into the lower beer):

(original source)

For advanced drinkers, bend a spoon handle so that you can lower the spoon further into the glass while still keeping the spoon head perpendicular to the table. This means that the beer doesn't have as far to fall from the spoon into the glass-beer.

The technique of making a layered beer takes a little practice, so give it a few tries (and drink all of your mistakes!)

  • 5
    I forgot to mention: the cat in the gif is required. Feb 1, 2014 at 1:40
  • 3
    The bent spoon is probably the best tool, but the coolest tool is most likely the Lagerhead Black and Tan Turtle.
    – Ryan Kinal
    Feb 4, 2014 at 17:11
  • GIF is 404 for me.
    – user162
    Nov 9, 2015 at 17:43

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