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Spheres of hand-chipped ice lend an intensely smokey aroma to Laurelhurst Market's signature cocktail. Bartender Eric Nelson explains that the oversized ice cube prevents it from melting too quickly—keeping the flavors unadulterated while offering a smokey olfactory sensation with each sip.
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Applewood chips are heated until they catch fire.
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Nelson loads a perforated tray with chunks of ice and places another tray underneath to catch the meltwater. He sets the smoldering pile of Applewood chips on the bottom of the smoker, letting the billowing plumes percolate into the water for an hour.
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Once refrozen, Nelson chisels away at the blocks of smoked ice, forming rough spheres that fit perfectly in lowball glasses.
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Ice-chipping is dangerous work. Nelson has the word "relax" carved into his handle. Back when Evan Zimmerman was head honcho, the ice-chipper had the word "KILL" engraved instead.
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Nelson makes pecan syrup, simmering toasted pecans, sugar, and water and filtering the sticky concoction through a fine sieve.
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The final act: whiskey, pecan syrup, amontillado sherry, and lemon juice are given a vigorous shakedown before being strained over a globe of smoked ice.
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