There’s been a lot of buzz lately about cocktail smokers and whether they really do anything to enhance your drinks. The most common question we hear is: are cocktail smokers worth it? Well, today we’re going to talk about them and how they can help you step up your home bartending game for good!
Now is the time to take up a new hobby if you’re a fan of upscale restaurants cocktails served in a smoky style. It’s now much easier to smoke cocktails at home with a variety of inexpensive one-stop devices. If you have never heard of smoked drinks before, don’t worry; cocktail smoking is simple, especially if you enjoy grilling and learning about home mixology.
What are cocktail smokers?
There are various cocktail smokers, but the basic concept remains the same. You place a drink under a sawdust-filled dome or inside a box and light the wood dust on fire to smoke it. Flavorful molecules from the generated smoke dissolve in the drink, making it smoky or savory. Your choice of wood will influence the flavor, of course. It is possible to smoke any drink you want, including whiskey and classic cocktails.
With all-in-one cocktail smoker kits, you get a smoking gun or kitchen torch, as well as wood chips and various setups, such as a smoking cloche, a smoking lid, or a smoking box.
The price of cocktail smokers
The price of a cocktail smoker ranges from $25 to $200. The simplest smoking guns will cost around what you’d pay for a few smoked cocktails in a posh bar. Then there are the advanced options that cost upwards of $150. All of them, however, work the same way. Wood shavings are placed in a chamber, air is drawn through, and it releases smoke.
There are some smoking guns that have glass domes, otherwise known as cloches. A spigot connects the glass dome and the flexible smoke tube. Even though the dome is not necessary, it serves as a good setting for the cocktail smoking show.
When choosing a budget to spend on a cocktail smoker, take into account your usage. Paying more for nothing more than the occasional pleasure of smoking a cocktail isn’t necessary. It is only worth it to buy a high-end device if you plan on using it a lot. However, remember that prices are often a determinant of durability. In general, the more expensive an appliance is, the longer it is likely to last for longer.
Take storage into account as well. There are compact smoker kits that are much cheaper if you lack the space for a ginormous smoking gun, box, or cloche.
In addition, if you fall in love with smoked cocktails, remember that you can replicate the same flavor in other foods as well. You can cold smoke your cheese, vegetables, or even meat. Cold smoking something won’t cook it; it only imbues it with some flavor.
What are the advantages of owning your own cocktail smoker?
Invest in the cocktail smoker kits if you enjoy playing with flavors and trying out a variety of new drinks. You can pull out recipes and customize your own drinks at home instead of hitting the nearest bar every time you feel like tasting a smoked drink. Some of the conveniences of owning your cocktail smokers include:
- Make yourself some bar-quality drinks and enjoy them in the comfort of your home
- Adds unique smoky flavors instantly
- Put a smile on your guests’ faces
- Unlock countless original cocktail recipes and make common spirits and cocktails your own
- Most cocktail smokers are portable, so you can prepare and smoke a cocktail anywhere. They also fit all standard mixing glasses, rocks, and shakers.
- If you get a high-quality smoker kit, it can last for thousands of uses
- Cocktail smokers are simple to use
What spirits can you use with cocktail smokers?
You can smoke any drink you want, including whiskey beverages and traditional cocktails as well. However, mixologists recommend spirits-based drinks made with not too many ingredients. That is because complex cocktails lose their subtleties when smoke is involved, so smoke simple drinks with strong flavors that stand out.
Some of the best smoke/spirit blends are:
- Applewood with rye whiskey: Applewood smoke has a mellow, sweet, and fruity flavor that can be used to spice up cheap whiskey.
- Cinnamon with bourbon: Cinnamon produces light smoke that enhances the sweetness of the bourbon
- Rosemary with tequila: Pairing rosemary with cocktails gives them a rustic, earthy flavor
- Bourbon with corn husks: The corn husks can be used to put some sweetness in bourbon
- Hickory and boozy drinks: Hickory’s smoky, spicy flavor pairs well with drinks that use aged spirits as their base
- Cedarwood and Negroni: You can use a cedarwood-smoked glass to enjoy a Negroni. It imbues the drink with a barbecue-like flavor and a mellow, woodsy bouquet.
- Pecan and Corn Whiskey: Pecan smoke has a nutty aroma that pairs well with corn whiskey to balance its savory and sweet elements.
The Best Ways to Smoke Cocktails and Drinks
You can add smoke to liquid products such as tomato juice or mint julep syrup by filling a mason jar with the liquid, adding smoke, sealing it, and shaking it. Wait until the smoke has faded before opening and tasting the product. Add more smoke if needed. Store it as you normally would.
Oil- or bourbon-infused Woods
Bourbon and aromatic oils can enhance wood used to smoke cocktails. Simply soak the wood for a few minutes. Alternatively, you can use wood from aged whiskey barrels since these are already soaked in liquor.
The scent of cedar smoke in scotch cocktails makes them taste like cigar boxes when paired with peated whisky. You can also smoke Penicillin or Rob Roy paired with cedar. Alternatively, if you have cinnamon or rosemary on hand or other woody spices, you can light them. The spices smoke readily, and their aroma enhances any smoking experience.
Drinks can also be served with smoked ice cubes to add a gentle, subtly smoky flavor. There you have it, cocktail lovers. These are just a few smoke and spirits combination examples. You can try out as many as you want. Indeed, when it comes to selecting the best wood for your cocktail, it’s about experimentation. Only through trying and testing will you discover which drinks pair well with which woods. Be aware that the flavor will only last a short time. It would be best if you, therefore, did extensive research to find a smoker that suits both your home bar and needs as well.
How to Choose a Cocktail Smoker
Choosing the best cocktail smoker is not complicated at all. Just focus on the following things as you sample various kits.
Contents of the Package
Many cocktail smokers are sold as all-in-one kits with everything included, but others may only contain the smoke gun, and you have to buy wood chips and a dome or board separately. Always go through a kit thoroughly to check what’s included before buying. The convenience that all-in-one cocktail smoker kits provide is unbeatable. Once you get these kits, you can start making smoky cocktails right away.
There are many types of cocktail smokers. Some are relatively small and portable, making them easy to store and transport. Others are ginormous smoke guns and dome or box combinations. Ultimately consider the price, available storage space, and convenience. Ultra-portable cocktail smokers make it easy to smoke cocktails anywhere.
Nowadays, almost all cocktail smoking guns feature an ignition system and can be recharged via a USB cable port or plugging them into a wall socket. This may seem convenient at first glance, but it’s highly possible you’ll be leaving your guests waiting while your smoker recharges.
Introducing our top-of-the-line cocktail smoker kit
If you are looking for a cocktail smoker, Smokeshow offers the best of the best. The Smokeshow Cocktail Smoker consists of a handcrafted walnut wood smoker with a variety of accessories that make it easy to smoke your drinks. The Smokeshow is small, lightweight, heavy-duty, and easy to store. It also doesn’t require charging or a battery of any kind. It’s small enough to travel with and packs enough punch to use in the highest end bars and restaurants.
The Smokeshow smoker bundle
This kit comes with an all-new Cocktail Smoker (walnut wood handcrafted) as well as all the accessories you need to take your cocktail game to the next level!
Included in the Smokeshow Starter Bundle are:
- The Smokeshow Cocktail Smoker
- Bourbon Barrel Oak, Cherry, Apple, and Hickory Smoke Dust
- High-performing butane jet kitchen torch
- 140ml Butane
You simply mix your cocktail, pop the Smokeshow on top, sprinkle smoke dust in the basket, and torch it. Allow the drink to smoke for 30 seconds, then enjoy!
Until recently, smoking drinks was an exclusive feature for fancy bars and mixologists who love putting on elaborate tricks. There are still many bars and bistros that offer smoked cocktails; however, you can also make them at home. There are easy and inexpensive cocktail smokers as well as complex and expensive versions. Choose the best smoker based on your needs by using the tips above.
The Smokeshow Smoker is one of the affordable, versatile, and easy-to-use kits on the market. It comes with everything you need to start infusing smoke into your drinks and will last for thousands of uses. It’s on sale in select stores for 30 % off for a short period only!