How to Make a Smoked Old Fashioned Cocktail

How to Make a Smoked Old Fashioned Cocktail

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At Seattle restaurant Mistral Kitchen, bar manager Andrew Bohrer makes a drink called the Courting Rachel: a hickory-smoked version of the Old Fashioned cocktail. It begins with an ice diamond, which Bohrer carves to order — in a flurry of ice shavings — from a four-inch cube of perfectly clear ice. Helen Rosner
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In a pitcher, Bohrer blends 2 ounces bourbon (he prefers Maker’s Mark because it holds up well to the smoke), a quarter-ounce of rye whiskey simple syrup, and two dashes Peychaud’s bitters. Helen Rosner
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Next comes the smoke: Bohrer uses a small, portable smoker (which he warns “will definitely break at some point”) into which he packs finely-shredded hickory shavings, and lights. Helen Rosner
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The smoke is fed into a decanter that’s used only for this cocktail. “Even if you wash it out after every use, the smoky smell sticks around,” Bohrer warns. Helen Rosner
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In goes the cocktail! Helen Rosner
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After plugging the decanter, Bohrer swirls it around a few times, aerating the liquid with smoke. Helen Rosner
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Bohrer pours the drink into an ice-filled glass — it’s a dramatic presentation, with smoke spilling across the bar. Helen Rosner
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Once the smoke subsides, we’re left with a potent cocktail, sweet-bitter with a balanced smoky kick. See the recipe for the Courting Rachel » Helen Rosner