Makes six 6-ounce drinks
Here's another drink that Jen Barozzini created for our drink menu. I found the inspiration behind the drink very interesting. Jen wanted to create a drink that made mezcal more accessible to people who weren't familiar with it. The pineapple and the vanilla harmonize with the flavors in the mezcal. The red chile in the salt rim gives the drink a playful note while complimenting the pineapple flavor.
1 large fresh pineapple, peeled, and cut into 1-inch thick slices
1 cup simple syrup
1/4 teaspoon Mexican vanilla
6 ounces Chichicapa Mezcal
3 ounces fresh lime juice
3 to 4 cups small ice cubes
Spicy Salt Rim Garnish
6 dried morita chiles
1/4 cup kosher salt
1/2 lime to moisten the glass rims
Prepare the grilled pineapple puree. Heat a gas grill to medium-high or light a charcoal fire and let it burn until the coals are covered with gray ash and still very hot. Lay the pineapple slices on the grill. Grill about 3 to 4 minutes a side or until the pineapple is golden brown. Remove from the grill and let cool. Once cooled, discard the core and cut each slice into quarters. Place in a food processor and puree.
Prepare the Mezcal base. Measure out 2 cups of the pineapple puree and stir in 1 cup water, 1 cup simple syrup and the Mexican vanilla. In a large pitcher, combine 12 ounces of the pineapple puree mixture, mezcal, and the lime juice. Cover and refrigerate until chilled, at least 1 hour.
Prepare the spicy salt garnish. Place 6 morita chiles into a coffee grinder or small food processor. Grind until the chiles are reduced to small flakes. Measure out 1/4 cup of the ground chiles and place into a bowl. Stir in the kosher salt. Set aside until you're ready to finish the drinks. This salt mixture will last several months.
Finish the cocktail. When you're ready to serve, moisten the rims of your martini glasses with the cut side of the lime half. Spread some of the spicy salt mixture on a small plate, then upend the glasses into the salt to crust the rims. Fill the cocktail shaker 2/3 full with ice cubes and pour half of the pineapple mezcal mixture (about 1 1/4 cups) over the ice. Cover and shake for 10 to 15 seconds. Strain into three of the prepared martini glasses, then finish the remaining cocktails in the same way.