Half and half

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"Half and half" is the name of various beverages and foods made of an equal-parts mixture of two substances, including dairy products, alcoholic beverages, and soft drinks.

Alcoholic beverages[edit]


In some cafés in Brussels, a "half en half", Dutch for "half and half", is a mixture of white wine and champagne.[1] Originally, it was a mixture of two different typical beer types from Brussels: 50% lambic and 50% faro.[2]


If you order a "half and half" in a Copenhagen bar, you will get a mixture of dark beer and pilsner (lager). The dark beer is a Danish version of an Imperial stout-type beer; in Denmark simply called "porter", which is a little sweeter than a Guinness.[citation needed]

Ireland, England and North America[edit]

Black and Tan drinks prepared with a blend of Guinness stout and Bass pale ale

In Britain, a half and half may mean a mixture of mild ale and bitter.

In the North East of England, a request for a half and half would more commonly produce a combination of Scotch ale and India pale ale (IPA). This drink fell from favour when the Scottish & Newcastle brewery were obliged to sell many of their tied public houses and McEwan's Scotch and IPA disappeared from public bars across the North East.

In Canada and the United States, Black and Tan refers to Guinness and a lager or ale that will support the Guinness, most commonly Bass Ale, although some Irish-themed bars shun the term for its association with the Royal Irish Constabulary's "Black and Tans" force. A Half and Half is Guinness and Harp. A Guinness and Smithwick's is a Blacksmith.[3][4]


A "hauf an a hauf", in Scots

In Scotland, a "hauf an a hauf"[5] (half and a half) is a glass of whisky (a "wee hauf", a quarter gill)[6] and a half-pint of beer as a chaser.[7][8]

Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Montenegro, Serbia, Macedonia[edit]

"Pola pola" ("half and half") is a slang term for the drink spritzer, made out of equal parts of white wine or rosé wine and carbonated water. Different ratios of wine and carbonated water are named with various slang terms, depending on the region. "Pola pola" is also known as "litra i voda" (one bottle of wine and one bottle of carbonated water), as well as "Litar-litar" (as in 1 liter of wine, 1 liter of water) and "Gemišt".


In Switzerland, and more particularly in Valais, a half & half is a mixture of dry and sweet liquor of the same fruit.[citation needed] In the canton of Geneva, a "moitié-moitié" generally refers to a digestif containing one half Williamine liqueur and one half Williamine eau-de-vie. In the canton of Ticino, a mezz e mezz (literally half and half in the local Ticinese dialect) refers to a mixture of one half local Merlot wine and one half gazosa (a local lemon-flavoured carbonated soft drink).[9]


In Uruguay there's a beverage called "Medio y Medio" ("half and half") that consists of sweet sparkling wine and dry white wine in equal parts. "Medio y medio" comes in Red, Rosé and White varieties, the latter being the original and most popular. It is massively consumed during the holidays but it can be found in certain places throughout the year as well. The most common "Medio y Medio" is the one produced by Roldós, a local restaurant that claims having invented the mixture.

"Medio y medio" is also the name for another cocktail, made with White Vermouth and "Caña" (literally "cane"), a 35–50% alcoholic beverage distilled from sugar cane. This name, however, is used not in the majority of bars but only in the most traditional ones, probably due to the existence of Roldós' "Medio y Medio".

Non-alcoholic beverages[edit]

The Arnold Palmer, also known as a half and half,[10] is popular in the Northeastern United States. The drink consists of 1 part lemonade and 1 part iced tea; variations may include a mixture of sweet and unsweetened tea. In the Southern United States, "half and half" may also refer to a mixture of half sweet, half unsweetened tea. [11][12] Some coffee shops in colder climates serve a half and half drink consisting of half coffee and half hot chocolate, similar to caffè mocha. Half & Half might also refer to a flavor of soda which combines the flavors of grapefruit and lemon.

Canada and the United States[edit]

Cartons of half and half at a grocery store in California

In Canada and the United States, half and half almost always refers to a light cream typically used in coffee. (See below.) The name refers to the liquid's content of half milk and half cream. It is widely available in the United States, both in individual-serving containers and in bulk. It is also used to make ice cream. Non-fat versions of the product are also available, containing corn syrup and other ingredients.[13]


In the Romandy, a moitié-moitié (lit. half-half) can refer to coffee mixed with an equal amount of milk.[citation needed].

In the German-speaking part of Switzerland, especially in the north-eastern part, a mixture of apple and orange juice is known as "halb halb" ("half half", sometimes written 1+1).[14][15]

Dairy product[edit]

Coffee mixed with half and half

"Half and half" or "Half-and-half" is a mixture of milk and cream, which is often used in coffee and with breakfast cereals. In the United States, half and half is a common liquid product produced by dairy companies in premixed form. It was invented by William A. Boutwell of Boutwell Dairy in Lake Worth Beach, Florida, which distributed the blend regionally between 1927 and 1956.[16][17][18]

In the United States, half-and-half must contain between 10.5 and 18 percent milkfat.[19] It is pasteurized or ultra-pasteurized, and may be homogenized.[19]

The following optional ingredients may also be used:

  1. Emulsifiers
  2. Stabilizers
  3. Nutritive sweeteners
  4. Characterizing flavoring ingredients (with or without coloring) as follows:
    1. Fruit and fruit juice (including concentrated fruit and fruit juice).
    2. Natural and artificial food flavoring.[19]


Coffee creamer in milkette containers

A milkette (also referred to as dairy milker, creamette or creamers) is a single serving of milk (2%) or cream (10% and 18%) in 12 millilitres (0.42 imp fl oz; 0.41 US fl oz) or 15 millilitres (0.53 imp fl oz; 0.51 US fl oz) containers used for coffee and tea.

The single cup of milk is stored in a sealed (foil cover) plastic cup of milk or cream with long shelf life[20] but must be refrigerated.


A half and half pizza


"Half-om-halfgehakt" (half for half minced meat) is commonly used for mixed minced meat, made of equal amounts of beef and pork. The term "Gehacktes halb und halb" is used in Germany, also referring to minced meat.


Moitié-moitié (lit. half-half) refers to a cheese fondue made with half Gruyère and half Vacherin Fribourgeois.


In the Skaraborg region of Sweden "Hälta Hälta" ("Half Half" in the local dialect) refers to a serving of half french fries and half mashed potato,[21] commonly served with sausage.

United States[edit]

A half-and-half pizza is one prepared with different toppings on each side of the pizza.[22][23]


A half and half is commonly understood to be a side dish of half chips and half rice.[24][25] A typical order might be "chicken curry half and half" or "chili con carne half and half".

See also[edit]


  1. ^ DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Belgium & Luxembourg. Dorling Kindersley Limited. 2013. p. 91. ISBN 978-1-4093-3415-6.
  2. ^ lesoir.be. "Partners – lesoir.be".
  3. ^ "Black & Tan Variations". Rugged Fellows Guide. Retrieved 12 March 2019.
  4. ^ Nick Carr (16 March 2016). "11 Most Popular Guinness Blends". Kegerator. Retrieved 12 March 2019.
  5. ^ Smith, Ken (8 December 2011). "Driven to distraction". The Herald. Retrieved 11 January 2012.
  6. ^ "Dictionary of the Scots Language :: SND :: Half n., adj., v". Dsl.ac.uk. Retrieved 22 May 2016.
  7. ^ "West Word news from the Highlands of Scotland". Road-to-the-isles.org.uk. Retrieved 13 November 2012.
  8. ^ Mairi Robinson, ed. (1985). The Concise Scots Dictionary. Aberdeen: Aberdeen University Press. p. 262. ISBN 0-08-028492-2. a small WHISKY with half pint of beer as chaser
  9. ^ Finessi, Andrea (21 May 2014). "Quella gazzosa che manda giù tutto". Giornale del Popolo. Retrieved 2 December 2014.
  10. ^ Gaudet, E.; Sharpless, A. (2014). Two Good Rounds Titans: Leaders in Industry & Golf. Skyhorse. p. 315. ISBN 978-1-5107-2051-0. Retrieved 8 January 2020.
  11. ^ Dish, Mary | Deep South. "How to Make Perfect Southern Sweet Iced Tea". Retrieved 18 November 2022.
  12. ^ Kitchen, Natasha (17 March 2022). "What is half sweet and half unsweet tea called?". Food Morning | Your #1 source for food informations and facts 🍔. Retrieved 18 November 2022.
  13. ^ "Fat Free Half & Half". Consumer.darigold.com. Retrieved 13 November 2012.
  14. ^ "obi Halb Halb". Thurella AG. Archived from the original on 31 July 2010. Retrieved 10 June 2012.
  15. ^ "Aproz, Verschiedene Fruchtsäften". Aproz Sources Minérales SA. Archived from the original on 10 March 2012. Retrieved 10 June 2012.
  16. ^ "Alfar Creamery (pdf)" (PDF). (from the files of the Historical Society of Palm Beach County and The Palm Beach Post.). Palm Beach County History Online.
  17. ^ Mustaine, Beverly (1999). The Images of America: On Lake Worth. Charleston, S.C.: Arcadia Books. p. 55. ISBN 978-0-7385-0055-3.
  18. ^ ""Lake Worth's Boutwell Road Named After Area Dairyman"". Historic Palm Beach Blog.
  19. ^ a b c "Code of Federal Regulations, Title 21, Volume 2, Revised as of April 1, 2018". Code of Federal Regulations. Food and Drug Administration.
  20. ^ "Fluids – UHT Milk & Cream – Gay Lea Foods Co-operative Limited". Retrieved 19 April 2016.
  21. ^ "I Skara räcker det med att säga "hälta/hälta"". www.expressen.se (in Swedish). Retrieved 4 August 2022.
  22. ^ McBride, Lyle (16 March 2000). "Fridge Door". Lakeland Ledger. Retrieved 31 August 2015.
  23. ^ Kuban, Adam (5 July 2010). "Slice Poll: Do You Order Half-and-Half Pizzas?". Serious Eats. Retrieved 12 March 2019.
  24. ^ Williams, Kathryn (11 February 2011). "New musical to worship the curry". walesonline.co.uk. Retrieved 11 November 2011.
  25. ^ "What is Half and Half". bakingbites.com. 8 November 2011. Retrieved 9 December 2013.

External links[edit]