The Nicotini: arriving in the nick of timey

You have to love the ever-inventiveness of human nature… trending in trendy bars of the world is the Nicotini, tobacco-spiked cocktails devised reportedly in Florida, US, in reaction to the ban on smoking in restaurants and bars.

Says the website

A liquid cigarette, this drink comes complete with all the nicotine rush and tobacco aftertaste found in an entire pack of Camels. The effect is achieved by soaking tobacco leaves in vodka overnight and deadening the tobacco juice’s harshness by adding five different liqueurs. The end result is a drink, which according to one Fort Lauderdale resident, “tastes like a cross between vodka and chewing tobacco”.

The tobacco martini is the lethal brainchild of Larry Wald, owner of the Cathode Ray Club on Los Olas Boulevard in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. It comes in several forms and varies in price from $3.50 a shot (Quick Puff) to $5.50 for a full cocktail. The regular nicotini has more bite than a martini and leaves a noticeable aftertaste. The menthol variety contains crème de menthe and has a cough drop taste while The Black Lung has a coffee flavour produced by Kahlua, its main ingredient.

Like any new idea, the nicotini has its opposers. Although more than three hundred drinks have been served since the smoking ban was initiated last July, not everyone is ecstatic about the nicotini.

Anti-smoking advocates and the medical establishment worry that there is no way to know how much nicotine is in the drinks and how much is potentially dangerous. While nothing in Florida’s new anti-smoking law or health code inhibits such drinks, experts still have many concerns about side effects that could include dizziness, heart palpitations and even nicotine poisoning.

The biggest criticism seems to be in its comparison with the nicotine patch and gum used to stop smoking. Experts argue that although they are comprised of nicotine as well, these products also contain warnings about how they should be used. With the drink, nicotine content could vary widely depending on how many tobacco leaves were used and how long they fermented in the tobacco-vodka marinade.

Larry Wald dismisses all criticism. His first idea was to offer hard candy for smokers to suck on, but he soon discarded that idea for a more creative one. Why encourage one vice when you can do two at the same time? A vice in the house is worth two in the bar, as the saying sort of goes….. Read the full story

Nicotini – Tobacco Infusions :: Art of Drink

The Nicotini cocktail for the smoking ban

YUM .. The Nicotini