’Tis the Season to Light Your Drink on Fire

I was reading the blog that Jordan Mackay (our Juice columnist) writes for 7×7 Magazine and ran across a post about a delicious-sounding drink called the Spanish Coffee made at San Francisco’s Absinthe. To make one, the bartender apparently lights some rum on fire in a wineglass, which caramelizes sugar around the rim. It looks like a festive winter-y alternative to a traditionally sugared glass. The drink also has cinnamon, coffee, Kahlúa, and brandy.

It got me wondering what other drinks involve open flames, because nothing seems smarter than playing with fire while drinking.

A well-known trick is flaming a citrus peel over a cocktail. This is a crucial component of a drink called the Flame of Love that the New York Times wrote about a while back. It’s a martini made with six parts vodka to one part sherry, and poured into a glass that has had several peels flamed over it to coat the glass with the essential oils. A final piece of peel is flamed over the drink, and “the spray of orange oil falls over the martini, giving that first sip a pronounced citrus zing.”

Over at the blog Cook & Eat, there is a recipe for a crème brûlée cocktail that sounds like a good alternative for eggnog-haters. It’s a warm drink made with cream, vanilla bean, vanilla vodka, and Frangelico. The kicker is serving it in a glass that has a caramelized-sugar rim. I imagine you probably want to do this on cheap tempered glassware, and not touch your glass for a while after you’ve taken a torch to it.

I also learned that there are hundreds of videos posted on YouTube of people lighting themselves, bars, friends, etc., on fire. Here’s a taste of what happens if you don’t leave this to a professional:

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