Hot Monkey really lives up to its name. Each bottle is packed with a secret combination of unique peppers, providing its signature smoky spiciness. This spirit is not for the faint of heart, literally. Spicy drinks and food increase your heart rate, and send a rush of endorphins to your brain. Hot Monkey definitely packs a punch but mastering the heat of this spirit is half the fun of drinking it. Here are some tips for cocktails and a few tricks for cooling yourself down after Hot Monkey heats you up!
How do I simultaneously celebrate the spice and make a drink that cools me down?
Whenever I’m making cocktails with spicy spirits, that is the question I ask myself. The answer is easier than you think. Spicy pairs incredibly well with two main ingredients in cocktails: sugar and citrus. The citrus will alter the pH of the cocktail and the sugar will bind with the oils in the peppers. This tug-of-war on your tongue is what keeps you reaching for sip after sip.
One of my favorite cocktails to make with Hot Monkey is Temperature Rising. The coconut water provides a natural sweetness that helps moderate the heat throughout the cocktail and the basil gives a persistent cooling, fresh aroma that refreshes your palate.
An even simpler option to taming Hot Monkey is by incorporating tropical juice mixers in your cocktail. The acid and natural sugar in pineapple juice pairs insanely well. The Perfect 31 is an easy-to-make mixed drink that still showcases the heat from the peppers while tempting you with a bright juiciness.
If you find yourself in a pinch and need a quick fix for the heat…
We’ve all heard that a glass of milk can temper the heat of capsaicin (the chemical compound in spicy foods) but here are some surprising ways you can beat the heat with more than just milk. Try these helpful one-step remedies too:
– Eat a sugar cube (or any sweetener like honey). Capsaicin is oil-based and the sugar will absorb the oil, pulling it off your tongue, allowing you to swallow and send the heat down the hatch.
– Grab a spoonful of yogurt or dairy ice cream – ideally full fat. This helps to dissolve and dilute the oils in the capsaicin.
– While drinking a Hot Monkey Bloody Mary grab that lemon wedge garnish and squeeze it directly into your mouth. Even though a lemon is acidic, it actually becomes alkaline in the body, shifting the pH of the food and providing some relief.
– Eat something starchy like bread. While this doesn’t neutralize the heat, it does sort of whisk it away, off your tongue after swallowing – removing the spice from your mouth.
– And last but not least, don’t drink water! Weird, we know, but it’s true. Water will only elevate the sensation of spiciness because the water will actually spread out the oils in the capsaicin, giving it more places to linger in your mouth.
We all love a little heat in our lives. It gets our heart pumping, gives us a little adrenaline boost and pushes us to our limits. Sometimes we might overdo the spice and these tips and tricks are a nice way to get us back to enjoying another sip of the elusive Hot Monkey!