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Elevate Your Mixology With a Cocktail Smoker

If you're looking for a single bar accessory to elevate your cocktails from grand to unforgettable, the cocktail smoker is your solution. This incredible device is mind-blowingly dramatic, but, like all excellent solutions, just as easy for you to set up and use. Invented by the great bartender Charles Joly, renowned for many years as one of the godfathers of the modern-art cocktail, the cocktail smoker now comes in many styles. Each promises to turn your next happy hour, date night or dinner party into a veritable magic show. Get your guests in on the fun and taste the rich difference of a smoked cocktail.

What is a Cocktail Smoker?

A cocktail smoker is essentially a box. It's used in tandem with a smoking gun to impart a subtle, yet deep flavor to drinks. Most people love cocktail smokers because of the visual impact.

  • Your smoker doesn't have to be a box as long as it's an enclosed container that allows smoke to condense and infuse your beverage. Cocktail smoking cloches are also popular. A cloche is a glass dome that goes over a base.
  • Mix your drink like you normally would. A cocktail jigger can help you measure spirits, while a cocktail spoon lets you mix comfortably. If you're putting on a show, choose a bar spoon that shows off thoughtful craftsmanship.
  • Place the drink inside the smoker. Your smoker should be able to fit rocks or Collins glasses. Close the box lid or put the top on the cloche.
  • Use the smoking gun in tandem with your favorite aromatics to fill the box or cloche with smoke. Let the smoke infuse the beverage and then remove the drink for enjoyment.

Other Use for a Smoking Gun

Your smoking gun can be used for other culinary or entertaining purposes. While a smoker accommodates the hose of the gun, you can still find creative ways to enhance and elevate your other dishes--and, of course, you can use the smoker for non-alcoholic drinks, too.

  • Use wood chips of all kinds to experiment with different flavors. Try hickory, applewood, cherry or mesquite, which is particularly good when trying to get that low-and-slow flavor that can take half a day or more without help.
  • Look beyond various wood flavors to infuse meat or vegetable dishes or dessert plates with exciting flavors, like dried flowers or tea.
  • Test out a cut of meat in a smoking cloche or try the gun in a Dutch oven or a sauté pan that you put a lid on to simmer or braise. Combine techniques by blowing smoke into a crock pot before sealing to return later.

When hosting, your cocktail smoker is bound to be a hit. The party-trick element to these simple devices is as impressive as the enticing flavors it imparts.