The Jagerbomb - the Cocktail with a Bang Content from the guide to life, the universe and everything

The Jagerbomb - the Cocktail with a Bang

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Most commonly known as a Jägerbomb - but not afraid to sneak onto cocktail menus under a couple of aliases: Jagbomb, Jäger-Bull or Flying Hirsch1 - this one-shot cocktail combines Jägermeister and the highly-caffeinated energy drink Red Bull. Jägermeister is a dark-coloured, syrupy German spirit made from a secret blend of herbs2 notably including aniseed; initially it almost tastes sweet but this quickly pales in comparison to the kick of the aftertaste which has caught many an unsuspecting drinker unawares.

What You'll Need

Although served in a variety of ways, the basic components of a Jägerbomb are reassuringly consistent. You'll need one shot of Jägermeister, a can of Red Bull energy drink and either a Jägerbomb cup3 or, more commonly, a shot glass and a larger glass (normally a half pint glass) which the shot glass fits comfortably inside.

What You Do

There's no time for complicated mixing in a Jägerbomb and simplicity is the key. Firstly you need to measure out the ingredients. Into the larger glass, pour half a can of Red Bull (approximately 125ml). The shot glass should be filled with a standard shot of Jägermeister. Now you're ready to go. Immediately before drinking, drop the Jägermeister, shot glass and all, into the Red Bull and then the resulting cocktail is typically downed in one gulp.

Time for a Little Theatricality

When multiple Jägerbombs are ordered, the process of mixing the cocktails becomes much more of an event. The glasses of Red Bull are lined up side-by-side along the bar with an empty glass at one end; the shots of Jägermeister are then balanced atop and between each of the larger glasses. When ready to be served, the shot glass balanced above the empty glass and the first full glass is tipped in the direction of the remaining glasses. If set up correctly, this will empty the Jägermeister into the Red Bull and knock the next glass in the sequence over in a domino effect.

Why Would You Want to Drink Such a Thing?

Alcohol, as we know, acts as a depressant whereas the caffeine in Red Bull has the opposite effect, hyping up the drinker. In the case of Jägerbombs, the effect of the caffeine overpowers the effect of the alcohol so the drinker does not seem to suffer from the normal level of drunkenness and the caffeine allows them to continue drinking until the sun rises - which always sounds better in theory than it does in practice.

Medical professionals warn against the mixture of alcohol and caffeine as it leads to faster and higher levels of dehydration. Following this advice, an increasing number of bars and clubs are refusing to sell this cocktail. This Researcher warns against it as it leads to the worst hangover imaginable.

A Variation

Okay, so you might be comfortable with the standard Jägerbomb, but are you ready to crank it up a notch?

Flaming Jägerbombs

Doing exactly what it says in the name, a Flaming Jägerbomb is the standard Jägerbomb which is on fire. Before dropping the shot of Jägermeister into the Red Bull, the shot should be set alight4. Although the flame does theoretically burn off and reduce the alcohol content, it is considerably more dangerous, and practitioners of this spectacle are usually not too attached to their eyebrows.

A Final Word of Warning

As with any and every drink involving alcohol, drink Jägerbombs responsibly, as no one likes a vomiting drunk.

1Hirsch being the German word for 'stag', which is the logo of Jägermeister.2Known to German-speakers as Kräuterlikör, literally herb liqueur, and often served as a digestif at the end of a meal.3This is a specially designed cup which has an inner core to hold the Jägermeister and keep it separate from the Red Bull which goes in the outer core.4The Jägermeister will be easier to light if it has been gently warmed (for example, in a microwave) first.

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