You’d be surprised what spicy flavours do to your taste buds, whilst many will squirm at the thought of eating a red chilli, they have benefits such as enhancing your taste buds and promoting digestion.
So what better way to enliven your tastebuds than with a spicy pre-dinner drink? You can make these libations as hot as you like by adding another shot of spicy liquor or an extra teaspoon of chipotles in adobo sauce.
For those who love all things hot and spicy, drinks retailer The Bottle Club has rallied together five cocktail recipes guaranteed to put a spring in your step, along with important tips for combining spices with alcohol.
The Spicy Margarita
One of the most popular cocktails in the world, the Margarita has a spicy sibling you’ve got to watch out for. Holding onto the classic recipe of a blend of sweet, sour and earthy flavours, this Mexican cocktail gives you an extra kick finish.
Your choice of tequila is important for this spicy cocktail. For the best results, choose one that is made with 100% blue agave (here are some options). An equal split of orange liqueur and agave syrup adds sweetness, while fresh lime juice provides balance and that characteristic acidity you can’t achieve with bottled sweet-and-sour.
The key ingredient here is fresh jalapeños, muddled in a shaker before adding the other ingredients. Add two jalapeño coins with their seeds removed to create that fiery taste and if you’re feeling brave, throw in a third. This warm, savoury drink is the perfect cocktail to set fire to your summer.
Bottle Club tips: “The key to creating a palatable spicy drink is to go slow. Start with a small amount of the hot ingredient and build it up to your taste the next time you make that drink.”
- 1 lime wedge
- 2 jalapeño coins, seeds removed
- 60 ml Blanco tequila
- 15 ml orange liqueur
- 30 ml lime juice, freshly squeezed
- 15 ml agave syrup
- Garnish: salt rim
- Garnish: jalapeño coin
- Rub the rim of a rocks glass with a lime wedge, dip the rim in salt to coat, and set aside.
- Add the jalapeño coins to a shaker and gently muddle.
- Add the Blanco tequila, orange liqueur, lime juice and agave syrup, plus ice, and shake until well-chilled.
- Strain into the prepared glass over fresh ice.
- Garnish with a jalapeño coin.
The Michelada is one of the easiest drinks to mix up at home and great for those who get easily bored with drinking beer all night and fancy something a little stronger. From the hot sauce to the beer, the entire drink can be customized to fit your taste and requires very little effort.
This is where you venture into the back of your condiments cupboard, as the key ingredients here are Tabasco sauce, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, and black pepper. Oh, and let’s not forget the Mexican beer– don’t worry it isn’t as bad as it sounds.
The Bottle Club tips: “When adding spice to a cocktail, it is important to remember that the alcohol will enhance the heat. Even if you love spicy food and drinks, start with the recommended amount and try it before adding more.”
- 30 ml of lime juice
- 3 dashes hot sauce (Tabasco)
- 3 dashes soy sauce
- 2 dashes Worcestershire sauce
- Ground pepper (to taste)
- 340 ml Mexican beer
- Garnish: lime slice
- Fill a chilled beer mug or pint glass halfway with ice and add the lime juices, sauce and pepper. Stir until well mixed.
- Slowly top with beer and garnish with a slice of lime.
- If you’re feeling decorative, rim the glass with salt or mix it with cayenne pepper if you like.
Cucumber Wasabi Martini
The only place you would ever dream of eating wasabi is in a Japanese meal, right? However, it is also an alternative way to get a spicy drink without using hot pepper ingredients.
Spicy drinks are all about balance, and cucumber wasabi provides exactly this as the Japanese horseradish paired with gin and cooled down with fresh cucumber to create a very exciting and intriguing cocktail.
Whilst you would normally put vodka in a martini, the array of botanicals in a gin gives the cocktail dimension, playing nicely against the pungent wasabi paste. Pickering’s With Scottish Botanicals Gin is gorgeously herbaceous and subtly floral.
The Bottle Club tips: “If you see a flavour which instantly puts you off, try and keep open minded! This may not be the drink for everyone, but if you’re an adventurous drinker, try it. It may just become a new favourite!”
- 3 slices cucumber
- 1 pea-sized dollop of wasabi paste
- 15 ml simple syrup
- 40 ml botanical gin
- 15 ml of lemon juice
- Garnish: cucumber slice
- In a cocktail shaker, muddle the cucumber slices, wasabi, and simple syrup.
- Fill with ice and add the gin and juice.
- Shake well and strain into a martini cocktail glass (straining is crucial because it will help filter out bits of wasabi and cucumber.)
- Garnish with a slice of cucumber
Whilst you already feel intrigued in the name, the devil cocktail is a combination of brandy and crème de menthe and is an ideal dessert drink or comforting winter cocktail. White crème de menthe is preferred because it lets the brandy control the drink’s colour.
Of course, there is a kick, and the dirty secret to this cocktail is the cayenne pepper, creating a spicy aftertaste. This is a really simple drink to make and if you like acquired tastes it could become your regular winter warmer.
The Bottle Club tips: “Ground cayenne is up to eight times spicier and chilli powder, so make sure you don’t overdo it on the pepper.”
- 60 ml brandy
- 15 ml crème de menthe (white)
- Pinch of cayenne pepper (ground)
- Pour the crème de menthe and the brandy into a cocktail shaker filled with ice and shake well.
- Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
- Add a pinch of cayenne pepper on top.
- Serve and enjoy!
For those who are already wanting to get their sunglasses and sun cream on, this excitingly tropical cocktail is the perfect way to get in the summer mood.
Its fruity flavours accompanied by a small serving of chipotle chiles is a great way to slowly acquire your taste buds to spice and if you have some leftover chipotles in adobo hiding in the fridge, you’re already one step ahead.
The Bottle Club tips: “Always use fresh fruit as this will help create a bigger contract of flavours whilst cooling down the spicier elements, as well as giving you your five-a-day.”
- 2 large fresh strawberries, halved
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 60 ml ounces of vodka
- 60 ml fresh pineapple juice
- ½ teaspoon adobo sauce from canned chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
- Pineapple slice (for serving)
- Muddle strawberries and sugar in a cocktail shaker.
- Add vodka, pineapple juice, and adobo sauce; fill the shaker with ice.
- Shake until the outside of the shaker is frosty, about 30 seconds.
- Strain into a rocks glass filled with ice and garnish with a pineapple slice.
Thanks to The Bottle Club for all of the fantastic recipes! https://www.thebottleclub.com/
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