WHEN COCKTAILS AND GOOD SMOKES COME TOGETHER AT THE TABLE, THE HABANO WILL ALWAYS BE THE STARTING POINT TO REACH THE PERFECT BLEND
Everybody knows that cigars and pipes have accompanied the history of the world's most famous bars. The rings of thick smoke have made way for all kinds of people, eager to combine their precious cigars with some drinks. Somebody later coined the term “pairing” to describe that union between air and liquid, which sometimes turns out to be perfect.
I must confess I don't long for those times when I began my bartender career, when smoke used to cover every single space of the places where I was working. In countries like Spain, authorities have established that people cannot smoke in such enclosed spaces as bars or restaurants, thus improving the personnel's working conditions and, at the same time, making it nicer for nonsmoking customers.
However, countless people describe the pairing between cocktails and cigars as a delightful element for special occasions or moments of pleasure.
Talking about pairing is like talking about multiplying sensations. This practice helps us enhance the organoleptic perception and enjoy both elements in the same breath. When it comes to pairing Habanos and cocktails, we are not only satisfied with the combination of both components' tasting characteristics, but we also try to bring hidden nuances up to the surface.
Choosing the Habano is usually the first step and the drink is later prepared by using skills and imagination. Depending on the chosen vitola, we will find specific features and characters that help us handpick the ingredients for our cocktail.
The characteristics of coffee, chocolate, wood, herb, flowers and the like will guide us through the aromatic profile and taste into the perfect liquid pairing, just like wines and dishes. It is easier and more recommended to take into account the Habano's features and try to put similar characteristics in the cocktail. On the other hand, playing to find oppositions that complement each other is riskier and more interesting.
Nevertheless, the Habano's character, strength or softness are the true starting point: we can have both competing in terms of intensity or the softness of one of them helps the other element stand out and discretely make for a good companion. It must be a responsible choice or we could face the risk of having an exaggerated disparity between their characters, which brings about a bad moment and attempts against full enjoyment.
Pairing is like just multiplying sensations. Between a cocktail and a Habano, it feels really great to bring hidden nuances up to the surface