If you’re a fan of spice, you don’t have to wait for an exotic meal to get your fix.
In fact, it’s easy to add a little zing to your next cocktail hour with drinks that are infused with chiles and spicy liqueurs. The next time you have a hankering for some extra scovilles, whip up one of these three spicy cocktails that deliver a kick.
Bombay Heat Wave
Chocolate, overproof rye and chili-infused Jägermeister come together in this mouth-numbing cocktail from Gupshup’s beverage director Seth Allen. Absinthe and two types of bitters add a bite that balance and elevate the drink’s drier, spicier notes.
- Absinthe, to Rinse the Glass
- 1 dash Angostura Bitters
- 2 dashes Peychaud’s Bitters
- 1 oz. Chili-Infused Jägermeister*
- 1 oz. Wild Turkey 101 Rye
- Shaved Chocolate (to Garnish)
Preparation: Rinse the inside of a rocks glass with absinthe and discard the excess. Add the rest of the ingredients, save for the garnish, to a mixing glass with ice. Stir and strain into the rocks glass with fresh ice. Garnish with shaved chocolate.
- 15 Dry Red Chiles
- 1 liter Jägermeister
Preparation: Add dried chiles to the Jägermeister. After 24 hours, taste for heat, spice and flavor. When the desired flavors are extracted, strain out the chilis.
Think of this libation as a close cousin of the Spicy Margarita, but with much more unexpected flavors. “I wanted to incorporate more savory notes in this drink,” says Nightshade lead bartender Connie Kim. “It has a little bit of saltiness, spice and acidity in the cocktail as well as from the Korean sweet and sour pickle garnish.”
- 1 oz. Lime Juice
- .75 oz. Yuzu Kosho-Ghost Pepper Syrup*
- .5 oz. Salers Gentiane Aperitif
- .5 oz. Lustau Vermut Blanco
- 1.5 oz. Espolon Blanco Tequila
- Smoked Salt, for the Rim
- Korean Pickled Watermelon Radish (to Garnish)
Preparation: Rim a rocks glass with the smoked salt. Add all liquid ingredients to a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake and strain into the rocks glass. Garnish with the pickled watermelon radish.
*Yuzu Kosho-Ghost Pepper Syrup
- 1 cup Water
- 1 cup Sugar
- 1 tbsp. Yuzu Kosho Paste
- 1 Dried Ghost Pepper
Preparation: Add water, sugar and yuzu kosho to a small saucepan. Simmer over medium heat until sugar is dissolved. Strain into a heatproof container and add the dried ghost pepper. Allow to strain for one minute and remove.
Michelin starred Rasa serves up contemporary Indian cuisine with fresh California produce, but you won’t just find spice in their rich curries and sauces. Their cocktail program is just as fiery and features drinks like the Cobra Fang, which is mixed with smoky blended scotch, tropical mango and spicy habanero.
- 1.5 oz. Blended Scotch
- .5 oz. Ginger Liqueur
- .75 oz. Fresh Lemon Juice
- 1 Small Ripe Mango, Peeled and Chopped
- 1 Small Habanero
- Caramelized Apple Slices (to Garnish)
- Brandied Cherry (to Garnish)
Preparation: In the bottom of a shaker tin, muddle the fresh mango with a few small pieces of habanero. Add the liquid ingredients to the shaker with ice. Shake and double strain into a rocks glass with fresh ice. Garnish with caramelized apple sliced and a brandied cherry.