Monday, August 15, 2011

MxMo LX: Come To Your Senses - Big Apple Sour

Mixology Mondays have been coming at a fast and furious clip lately, at least compared to my recent tortoise like pace of posting, and sure enough it's time again for August's event. This month is hosted by 12 Bottle Bar, with the theme "Come to your Senses":
We all know that cocktails are supposed to taste good, and for this event, we’re going to take that as a given.  What we’re looking for, instead, are drinks that truly excite one or more of the other senses: touch, smell, sight, or even hearing.  Of course, it you want to get scientific about it – and why wouldn’t you – there are even more sensations which can be played with (echolocation, anyone?)... For inspiration, we suggest the grand garnishes of Kaiser Penguin, the flaming fantasia of the Pegu Blog’s Halikai Hot Tub, the sonic symphony of Aviary’s Old Fashioned in the Rocks, the vivacious visuals of Scott Beattie, ingenious ice, semi-solid shots, jiggling jellies, or even – if you’re willing to go there – Pop Rock rims.  The goal, we hope, is for everyone to embrace the fun, the challenge, and the potential absurdity of the event.  It’s time to think outside the glass..
I was not immediately sure in what direction to head for this one, but shortly my contemplation led me to recall the yet-to-be-opened PolyScience Smoking Gun my wife got me for Christmas. (I've mentioned how awesome my wife is, right?) I figure the smoke could provide both a striking visual and powerful aroma component to enrich the experience of drinking the cocktail. (Yeah, I know it's basically just a bong with a fan attached to it, but it's still pretty cool and does its job of delivering cold smoke.)

I started with something pretty simple, and didn't have time to get more elaborate. Luckily, my first attempt turned out to be pretty darn good. For no other reason other that I felt like trying one, and perhaps because it has slightly heightened visual appeal from the claret float, I went with a New York Sour. I took that drink, smoked the hell out of it with applewood, and I give you the Big Apple Sour:
Big Apple Sour
  • 2 oz Rye (Sazerac Rye)
  • ½ oz Simple syrup (1:1)
  • ¼ oz Cointreau (for dash Curaçao)
  • ¾ oz fresh lemon
  • ½ oz Claret (JAQK Cellars Bone Dance Merlot)
  • Applewood smoke from Smoking gun
Add first 4 ingredients to shaker and fill with applewood smoke and ice, bubbling smoke through liquid at times. Fill an additional vessel with smoke if desired for added effect. Shake and strain into Nick&Nora glass. Using bar spoon float wine to top drink. Garnish with additional smoke.
In motion if you prefer. (Do I get to count the crickets chirping in the background as an audible component to the drink? I'll take it. Add "Serve outdoors at dusk" to the instructions above.)

Here is a somewhat frantic video of me smoking the cocktail. Please excuse the cinematography:

Smoke filled shaker and smoke filled carafes for serving:
One for me, one for my brother the camera man:
I had every intention of making a second drink, angling specifically for smoking some rosemary into a green chartreuse concoction, but I ran afoul of the clock. Stay tuned for further experiments. I also fantasized about incorporating smoke into a drink served in my volcano bowl with an aflame LH151 center, incorporating my new favorite wine Calabretta Etna, grown on the slopes of the active volcano Mount Etna, but definitely didn't yet get to that. Same bat time, same bat channel...

For more inspiration, here's a clip from Manifesto in KC about smoking a whole bottle of Bourbon:


  1. Thank you for including videos! Although the bong with a fan description sort of helped with the visuals in my head...

  2. No problem, glad you enjoyed them.

    Oh, one other note I forgot to mention in the post:

    If anyone tries this at home DO NOT DO IT INDOORS! Seems obvious now, but it's a LOT of smoke, and I was an idiot the first time and had to abort prematurely.

    Hey, it was raining and I had to test the concept.

  3. Great post! well i can`t do any smoking since i don´t have any equipment but i enjoyed your post!


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