Smoked sloe gin (or vodka)

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Booze River Cottage HandbookThis is a silly idea but I have had an enormous amount of fun with it. We are used to eating smoked foods and some of us even smoke food at home. In fact hot-smoking fish on a grid over a frying pan of oak chips, cinnamon, cloves, etc. is easy and I highly recommend it. But what of smoked sloe gin or smoked drinks in general? Is it easy to smoke alcoholic drinks, and why would you want to?

Well, it is very easy; I have been experimenting and have devised a set-up you can cobble together in 10 minutes from stuff lying around the kitchen. As to ‘why’, I must really leave that for you to answer when you try it, but there is a noticeable effect on flavour and it looks so very cool.

Smoking drinks is simply a matter of squirting smoke through a drink, any drink, and serving immediately. If you get it just right there is a little bit of smoke floating above the liquor in the glass. For this you will need a saucepan you do not think too highly of and a scrupulously clean, used squirty washing-up-liquid bottle, with a small plastic or metal tube pushed into the nozzle.

Smoking is a worthwhile excursion for some drinks but certainly not for others. It goes well with highly flavoured, rather heavy tipples I certainly would not recommend trying it with elderflower sparkly or cowslip wine, but with sloe gin, whisky and seriously heavy beers such as my Rauchbier it does work.

  • Yield: 2 Glasses


  • 2 glasses of sloe gin or vodka
  • ½ cup of oak chips
  • ½ Orange Pared zest
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 6 cloves
How to Make It
  1. Have your glasses of sloe gin ready. Place all the other ingredients in your oldest saucepan and fashion a foil tent with a little closed chimney over the top.
  2. Set it over a medium heat. Once smoke starts to creep under the edge of the tent, just snip the point of the chimney off with scissors, quickly suck out some of the smoke with the washing-up-liquid bottle and immediately inject it into the glasses of sloe gin.
  3. One squirt usually does the trick though you can do it again if you like. Serve absolutely immediately.

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