It’s not a secret I enjoy a fine cigar every now-and-again. I’m also a big fan scotch and mezcal. When I have a cocktail with that smoky undertone, much like relaxing with a cigar, there is a sense of calm, a relaxation that seems seep through me. Whether a scotch on the rocks or a citrusy mezcal cocktail, both give me that sense of calm. With this in mind, I’ve been interested in how to add a smoky wisp to cocktails. I’ve stirred, shaken and spritzed small amounts of smoky scotch or mezcal to drinks.
While walking around Williams-Sonoma I saw something that almost made me pee with excitement. It was The Smoking Gun! Every time I went to Williams-Sonoma, I’d walk over to The Smoking Gun and pine that it wasn’t a part of my bar . . . I mean kitchen. Then, for Christmas, my lovely fiance presented me with my very own Smoking Gun!
1.5 oz aged rum
0.5 fresh lime juice
0.75 simple syrup
6 mint leaves
2 dashes Angostura Bitters
Smoking Gun with applewood chips
1. Shake all the ingredients (except the Smoking Gun, natch) with ice and double strain into a rocks glass.
2. Place the Smoking Gun hose between the rocks glass and a cheater tin. Be careful not to pinch the hose closed. (Thanks to my friend Jamie for suggesting this technique.)
3. Using slight pressure to keep the hose in place, turn on the Smoking Gun and light the applewood chips.
4. Let the smoke fill up the rocks glass and inside the tin.
5. When you feel you have enough smoke inside the tin/glass, pull the hose out and slap the tin over the glass as if it’s a Boston shaker.
6. Give it a few shakes. Then break the seal of your improvised shaker, but DON’T take the rocks glass off the top. Instead, quickly invert so the rocks glass is on the bottom. Then remove the shaking tin off the top of the rocks glass. You’ll be rewarded with a puff of smoke rising from the glass and a pool of smoke directly on top of the cocktail.
7. Add a few ice cubes and serve the Havana Nocturne.
So what’s your favorite way to add smoke to a cocktail? Share you experiences in the comments.