You might not believe this, but ancho chile has a lot in common with bourbon and añejo tequila: (1) ancho’s deep richness echoes the complexity of both aged spirits, (2) the chile’s natural smokiness walks hand-in-hand with what you taste from the liquors’ toasted barrel aging, and (3) ancho’s gentle spiciness, though a different sensation, has something in common with alcohol’s customary ardor.
- 1dried ancho chile, stemmed and seeded
- 1ounce 100% blue agave añejo tequila
- 1ounce bourbon (the better the bourbon, the better the drink will be)
- 3drops orange bitters
- 1/4ounce agave syrup
- 6to 10 ice cubes, about 3/4 cup
Cut a piece of chile that is roughly 1 X 2 inches, scoop it into a cocktail glass and muddle it with a cocktail muddler or wooden spoon until it is noticeably more aromatic (it won’t break apart). Pour in the tequila, bourbon, bitters and agave syrup. If time permits, let the ancho steep with the liquid for a few minutes. Scoop in the ice and stir for 10 seconds. Strain into a 10-ounce rocks glass. Retrieve the piece of chile and float it on top. Serve immediately.