Biancaniello has built a reputation on using an abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables in his cocktail program. Here, he infuses gin with cilantro at the height of its growing season for a delicious Mexican riff on the Last Word.
A Mexican's Last Word
Recipe adapted from Matt Biancaniello, Library Bar, Los Angeles
Yield: 1 cocktail
Cook Time: 1 hour
- Cilantro-infused gin
- 1 bunch flowering cilantro
- One 750-ml bottle Plymouth gin
- Chile-infused tequila
- 10 Bhut Jolokia chiles (also called ghost chiles), stems removed
- One 750-ml bottle Milagro Reposado tequila
- Yellow Chartreuse dust
- One 375-ml bottle Yellow Chartreuse
- 1 lime wedge
- Yellow Chartreuse dust
- 2 ounces chile-infused tequila
- ¾ ounce cilantro-infused gin
- ¾ ounce fresh lime juice
- ¾ ounce Luxardo Maraschino liqueur
- ¾ ounce Green Chartreuse
- Maraschino cherry
- Cacao nibs
1. Make the cilantro-infused gin: In an airtight container, add the flowering cilantro and gin. Cover and set aside for 4 days. Strain the gin through a coffee-filter-lined sieve into another airtight container. Cover and set aside (discard the cilantro).
2. Make the chile-infused tequila: In an airtight container, add the chiles and tequila. Cover and set aside for 1 to 2 days. Strain the tequila through a coffee-filter-lined sieve into another airtight container. Cover and set aside (discard the chiles).
3. Make the Yellow Chartreuse dust: In a medium saucepan over low heat, warm the Chartreuse and let it reduce and concentrate, about 1 hour. Pour the reduction onto a Silpat-mat-lined rimmed baking sheet. Set aside to cool; it will turn into a hard candy (if it is still tacky after cooling, further dry it in a 175° oven for about 1 hour). Break the candy into pieces and put the pieces in a resealable plastic bag. Use a rolling pin to crush the candy into fine crumbs.
4. Make the cocktail: Use the lime wedge to moisten the rim of a cocktail glass. Transfer some of the Yellow Chartreuse dust onto a plate, turn the glass upside down, and twist the rim of the glass through the dust until well coated. Set aside.
5. Pour the chile-infused tequila into an atomizer (diffuser) and set aside. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add the cilantro-infused gin, lime juice, Maraschino liqueur and Green Chartreuse. Shake well, then strain into the Yellow Chartreuse dust-rimmed cocktail glass. Place the cherry in the bottom of the glass. Mist the top of the glass with the chile-infused tequila and sprinkle the cacao nibs on top. Serve.