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It’s about that time of year when Coloradans start dreaming about the beach, or, at least, an end to the bitter cold. (It can’t just be me, right?) Thankfully, Smōk, the six-month-old barbecue spot inside the Source Hotel & Market Hall, understands that our New Year’s budgets—which we’re desperately trying to stick to—don’t leave room for spontaneous trips to Mexico. They do, however, include funding for cocktails. So, we’ve traded in our sandy beach dreams for Smōk’s frozen sippers.
The three available options aren’t the hangover-inducing sugar bombs you’re used to. Beverage director Alexis Osborne (formerly of Acorn) developed each drink as a balanced cocktail first, and then figured out how to tweak the ingredients to make a frozen drink with the right consistency. “I wanted to make sure they were still cocktails that just happened to be frozen,” she says. “I wanted you to still [taste] all the ingredients and elements.”
We enjoyed all three slushies, but our favorite is the rosy-hued Medieval Mastermind (pictured above), a blend of Träkál (a Chilean spirit), Aperol, vermouth, and New Belgium Brewing Company’s dry-hopped sour ale, plus guava purée and fresh lemon juice. (While New Belgium has a small, experimental brewery on the hotel’s ground floor, the sour in the cocktail comes from the original Fort Collins location.) It’s sweet but balanced, allowing the hops and floral notes from the Träkál to come through. And while all that booze results in a $15 price tag, the extra-large, 14-ounce pour makes the cost a lot easier to swallow.
“People are always surprised [by the drink],” Osborne says. “That’s really what I was going for: providing a cocktail but in a fun and playful way.”
Sorry, winter—we’ve moved on.
3330 Brighton Blvd., #202