As we’ve all heard recently (and redundantly), New York Magazine has called the bacon movement a dying trend, boring as a lecture about plastic bags and beat like the proverbial dead horse. Why, then, did they give us this delightful recipe for bacon-infused bourbon? Is it just because they love me so much?
This post from April includes step-by-step instructions for making bacon-infused bourbon, and then mixing it with bitters and a little maple syrup for a sweet, smoky cocktail, something like an Old-Fashioned without all the muddled fruit. I am highly intrigued by this recipe, as bourbon (specifically Maker’s Mark) is my poison. I love the idea of an Old-Fashioned, but hate all that pulp floating in my drink. I’m going to give this recipe a try, but instead I’ll strain it into a martini glass with a twist of lemon and call it a bacon Manhattan.
Honestly, the idea of mixing bacon and vodka never appealled to me. It might be good in a Bloody Mary, but I don’t drink them so couldn’t really comment. My favorite bourbons already have a full, smoky quality to them, so adding bacon to the mix actually makes sense. The thing I like most about this infusion process is that it uses bacon grease instead of whole strips of fried bacon. I’ve had trouble in the past with infusing oils and having the herbs turn bad; it made me leery of the process. With bacon grease, a freezer and a strainer, I don’t see how it can go wrong.