Our new favorite cocktail is Smoke on the Boulevard, which we first tasted at Hell’s Kitchen at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. Next, we ordered it again at Hell’s Kitchen in Lake Tahoe. We so adore this cocktail, Dave purchased a smoking gun kit, so we could make it at home. We adjusted the name to Smoke on the Water since our backyard, where Dave does the smoking, is on a little lake. As well, we both like the Deep Purple song of the same name, which tells the tale of a casino fire in Switzerland. Fitting, because of the Vegas connection. Read on for the recipe.
Smoke on the Boulevard
At Gordon Ramsay’s Hell’s Kitchen at Caesars Palace, Smoke on the Boulevard is a delicious cocktail with an eye-catching presentation in a cherry-wood smoke-filled glass cabinet. As you open the door to the cabinet, the cocktail releases its smoke. What flavors! We lingered over every magnificent sip. This Hell’s Kitchen cocktail, while in the Manhattan family, is a cross between a Little Italy and a Paper Plane that is smoked for good measure.
The ingredients for Smoke on the Boulevard are Woodford Reserve Rye, Aperol, Averna Amaro, and Sweet Vermouth, smoked with cherry wood. The smoke box gives it a distinct flavor. We also tried it with Woodford Reserve Bourbon, which is my preference. Dave likes them both. We did a side-by-side tasting last night, and the cocktail with the Reserve Bourbon seemed smoother to me.
Smoke on the Water
As mentioned, we love this cocktail so much that we bought a smoking gun kit as soon as we returned from our road trip. We renamed the drink “Smoke on the Water,” because Dave uses the smoking gun outside by our little backyard lake. For now, he uses this dome container to smoke the cocktail with cherry wood. But I have a feeling that he might be making a custom box to use in the weeks ahead.
Smoke on the Boulevard / Smoke on the Water Recipe
If you want to make this tasty cocktail at home, here is the recipe.
- 1 1/2 ounces Woodford Reserve Rye Whiskey or Bourbon
- 1/2 ounce Aperol
- 1/2 ounce Sweet Vermouth
- 1/4 ounce Averna Amaro
- 2 dashes of cherry bitters
Combine ingredients with ice and stir to mix. Strain into a glass over an ice sphere. Smoke with cherry wood and then garnish with orange. You could also experiment with other flavors of wood to see which you like best.
In conclusion, Smoke on the Boulevard is a specialty cocktail available at Hell’s Kitchen. If you enjoy it as much as we do, you can purchase your own smoking gun kit and make the cocktail at home. The kit comes in a variety of sizes, shapes and prices. so be sure to do some research and read the reviews. Santé!
Margot and Dave