The name ‘kopstoot’ or head-butt says it all – this is a drink that gives you an instant kick. Or rather two drinks, because ‘kopstoot’ is the nickname coined for the combination of a beer and a shot of ‘jenever’ or Dutch gin. Another typically Dutch habit (although also known in Belgium) that you need to try with a certain amount of vigilance.

A strong combination

The idea is to first down the glass of ‘jenever’ in one go. Since ‘jenever’ has a high alcohol percentage, this may cause a burning sensation down your throat. You can then ‘extinguish’ the burning sensation by enjoying a fresh glass of beer. This hazardous duo is also known as a ‘nekslag’ (neck slam), ‘stelletje’ (couple) or ‘zijspan’ (sidecar). The ‘duikboot’ (submarine) is a variant of the ‘kopstoot’ in which the entire shot glass is gently immersed in the beer glass. The art is to drink only beer for the first few sips, after which the ‘jenever’ pours slowly into the glass.

Want to try?

Feel like trying a ‘kopstoot’? The infamous couple is available from nearly every pub in Holland. Be careful, though, it seems a less dangerous combination than it really is because the taste of the ‘jenever’ is rinsed away by the beer. As we say in Holland: Enjoy in moderation!

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