The allure of smoked cocktails lies in their ability to transport the drinker to another time and place. The scent of smoke evokes memories of campfires and barbecues, adding a layer of nostalgia to the drinking experience.

To create these intoxicating concoctions at home, you'll need a cocktail smoker gun. This tool uses wood chips to produce smoke, which is then trapped in the cocktail, infusing it with flavor. In this guide, we'll discuss everything you need to know about these cocktail smokers tools and how to use them correctly.

Here are the primary steps involved in using smoking guns to smoke your cocktails:

1. Choose your smoking chips or infusion

2. Load the smoker gun with chips or infusion

3. Torch the smoking chips until they start to smoke

4. Point the smoker gun towards the cocktail and discharge the smoke

5. Let the smoke settle in the cocktail for a few seconds

6. Serve the cocktail

What's Available Today

There are various types of smoker guns on the market, each with its unique features. Quite often the best cocktail smokers come in kits that contain all the accessories and make excellent gifts. Some, like the Breville Smoking Gun Pro, offer adjustable smoke levels, allowing you to control the intensity of the flavor. Others, such as the TMKEFFC Portable Smoking Gun, are designed for portability, perfect for on-the-go mixologists. Culinary butane torches, while not technically a smoking gun, can also be used to make the best smoked cocktails. These tools use butane gas to produce a flame, which is then used to ignite the flavored wood chips. Gravity infuser smokers, like the Crafthouse by Fortessa, use gravity to pull smoke down into the cocktail, creating a visually stunning effect.

Smoker Gun

Let's Take A Look At How To Use Each

Smoker Guns

Firstly, smoker guns are the most popular of the three tools. They are easy to use and produce a lot of smoke. Smoker guns are designed to infuse cocktails with smoke and flavor in just a few seconds. They are small, handheld devices that are easy to use. Some smoking guns can be attached to blenders, shakers, or any containers used for mixing cocktails.

To use a smoking gun, you'll first need to pack the smoking gun burn chamber with wood chips. Different types of wood produce different smokey flavor, so choose one that complements your cocktail. Applewood, for example, imparts a sweet, fruity flavor, while hickory gives a strong, smoky taste. Once the chamber is packed, simply ignite the smoking gun and aim the smoke toward your cocktail. If your smoking gun comes with a glass cloche or dome lid, place this over your cocktail to trap the smoke.

Culinary Butane Torch

When using a culinary butane torch, the process is slightly different. After packing the torch with butane gas, use it to light the wood chips. Then, cover your cocktail with a glass or dome lid to trap the smoke. Remember to keep the flame away from any flammable materials and never leave the torch unattended.

Culinary butane torches are ideal for heating the surface of a cocktail to add some extra smoky flavor. Butane torches allow for control of the intensity of the smoky flavor added to the cocktails. This method is preferred when the cocktail surface is substantial enough to hold onto the smoky flavor. May of these torches can also be used for smoking food as well.

Gravity Infuser Smoker

Finally, gravity infuser smokers. These are larger smoking gadgets designed for smoking larger batches of cocktails in one go. They feature a chamber where you load smoking chips, infusions, or wood chips, depending on your preferred flavor. Then, the chamber is locked to prevent air escape, and the gadget is lifted off the ground, creating a vacuum that pulls the smoke through the cocktail.

Stundenglass Gravity Infuser Smoker

Don't Overdo It

Regardless of the type of smoker gun you use, remember that the key to a great smoked cocktail is balance. When using any of these tools, it's important to pack the smoking chips or infusions adequately. Overpacking might cause the smoky flavor to overpower the cocktail while under-packing might result in a weaker smoky flavor. You don't just have to use wood chips in your smoking gun—herbs such as rosemary or dried spices can be used to finish your food with a breath of aromatic flavor. Experiment with different types of wood chips and infusion times to find the perfect balance for your taste buds.

What is Cold Smoking?

Cold smoking is a time-honored technique that imparts smoky flavors to food and beverages without utilizing heat. This technique uses smoke from smoldering wood chips to infuse the cocktail with flavor, while the absence of heat preserves the original characteristics of the beverage. The result is a drink that maintains its original temperature and integrity, yet carries an added layer of complexity.

There are many reasons to choose cold smoking when crafting a cocktail. Firstly, it enhances the overall sensory experience of the drink. The smoke adds a visual spectacle, an enticing aroma, and a depth of flavor that takes your cocktail to another level. Secondly, imparting a cold smoke can add rich, nuanced flavors without overpowering the original taste of the cocktail. Depending on the type of wood chips used, you could add hints of apple, cherry, hickory, or mesquite to your drink. Finally, cold smoking eliminates the harsh flavor and aftertaste that can sometimes be associated with traditional cocktail smoking, making the drink more enjoyable for those with sensitive palates.

Cold smoking differs from regular smoking in several ways. While both techniques use smoke to infuse flavor, the processes and results vary significantly. Regular smoking often involves heat, which can alter the temperature and chemical composition of the cocktail. Cold smoking, on the other hand, uses smoldering wood chips at a lower temperature, allowing the smoke to infuse the drink without changing its original state. The type of wood chips used in cold smoking also tends to differ from regular smoking, with fruit woods like apple and cherry being popular choices for their mild, sweet flavors.

In conclusion, cold smoking is an innovative technique that adds a unique twist to your cocktails. It's a method that requires patience and precision, but the result is a beautifully smoked cocktail with complex flavors and a smooth finish.

Smoker Gun With Dome

Putting A Bow On It

To wrap up, when it comes to smoking cocktails, there are several tools to choose from. Smoker guns, culinary butane torches, and gravity infuser smokers are some of the most commonly used ones. The best cocktail smoker kit can contain all of the tools needed to get started. Each tool has its advantages, limitations, and specific techniques to achieve the desired smoky flavor. Understanding the different types of tools available, their uses, and how to apply them correctly is essential to mastering the art of smoking cocktails. Cheers!

See our best cocktail smoker kits here!

Share this post