Enshrouded in a chilling mist, Midnight Fog is a bourbon-based cocktail best sipped responsibly (21+ only) on a cool Halloween evening. This jet black libation—sponsored by The Coca-Cola Company and SheSpeaks—is smooth and balanced with just a wisp of intrigue.
This Halloween cocktail recipe starts with a homemade rosemary spiced cola syrup that you can prepare in advance of any All Hallows Eve celebrations. Start by simmering Coca-Cola® Classic with cinnamon, clove, cardamom, star anise and a fresh rosemary sprig until reduced just a bit. Then, take the pot off the heat and let the flavors infuse while the liquid cools. Strain the syrup and chill in fridge until ready to use. The rosemary and spices amp up Coca-Cola’s inherent spiciness.
To make a Midnight Fog, stir bourbon, scotch, lemon juice, bitters and the cola syrup with ice until well-chilled. You can strain into a coupe glass and enjoy as is, or you can turn up the spooky factor with a few simple additions. More about that below along with the recipe!
Midnight Fog marries the warm, oaky notes of bourbon and scotch with the sweet spiciness of Coca-Cola® Classic. Lemon juice provides some lift, and Angostura bitters add depth of flavor. While this is a spirit forward cocktail (literally and figuratively), it’s also well-balanced, so anyone can enjoy it. The scotch I used here wasn’t overly smoky, so keep in mind that the flavor of this drink will vary a bit depending on how smoky your scotch is.
I found these Coca-Cola® Mini-Cans at my local Sam’s Club where they’ve got all the supplies needed to throw a spirited Halloween bash, including snacks, drinks, alcohol and mixers. I know I’ve mentioned this before, but I really do love Sam’s Club’s Scan & Go app. I can scan items in my cart as I shop, pay within the app and make my way out of the store while avoiding all of the lines. This is especially handy around these busy autumn holidays!
The secret ingredient to making this Midnight Fog cocktail jet black is activated charcoal powder! You can buy activated charcoal in powder form or simply crack open an activated charcoal pill (that’s what I did). 1/8 teaspoon of powder will color the drink without affecting the flavor.
To add the smoking effect, you’ll need to use some dry ice. Dry ice is the solid form of carbon dioxide, and it’s actually colder than water ice. To make dry ice smoke, you need to put it in liquid or pour warm water over it. In this recipe, I added just a bit of a dry ice pellet to make the cocktail bubble and smoke.
Here are some things to consider when using dry ice:
- Always wear gloves when handling dry ice. It can burn your skin if handled directly!
- Make sure the cocktail stops bubbling and smoking before drinking. You do not want to ingest dry ice.
- A small amount of dry ice will last for 8 to 10 hours if stored in a cooler. Don’t store in the freezer.
- Purchase dry ice in pellet-form for ease of use.
If you are serving this cocktail at a party, but worried about putting dry ice directly in the drink, I’d recommend adding the fog element to the cocktail station or serving tray. For example, you can make up a tray of 4 to 6 drinks along with a small metal or plastic container of dry ice. Just before passing the tray around, splash the dry ice with some warm water, and the fog will billow out as you are handing out drinks.
Midnight Fog Cocktail
For the rosemary spiced cola syrup:
- 15 ounces Coca-Cola (2 Coca-Cola Mini 7.5 fl oz cans)
- 3 cloves
- 3 cardamom pods
- 2 whole star anise
- 1 large cinnamon stick
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary
For the cocktail:
- 1 1/2 ounces bourbon
- 1/2 ounce scotch
- 1/2 ounce Rosemary Spiced Cola Syrup
- 1/4 ounce lemon juice
- 1 dash Angostura bitters
1/8 teaspoon activated charcoal powder, to make the drink black (optional)
Dry ice pellets, for garnish* (optional)
To make the syrup, add cola, cloves, cardamom, star anise, cinnamon and rosemary to medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 15 minutes. Let cool completely, then strain into a clean jar or bottle. You should have about 1/2 cup syrup. Store in the refrigerator until ready to use.
To make the cocktail, add bourbon, scotch, syrup, lemon juice and bitters to a mixing glass with ice. Stir until well-chilled. If you’d like to make the cocktail black, stir in activated charcoal powder. Strain into a coupe glass.
To make the cocktail foggy, add a small bit of dry ice to the drink. Just make sure the dry ice is completely evaporated (it will stop bubbling and smokinbefore you consume the drink.
* Do not ingest or swallow dry ice. Make sure the drink stops bubbling and smoking before you drink it. Always use gloves when handling dry ice.
This post has been sponsored by The Coca-Cola® Company and SheSpeaks. All thoughts, opinions and recipes are my own.24