Tag Archives: gin and tonic with burnt lemon and cucumber

Next-Level Gin & Tonic

Char some lemon and cucumber to make a gin & tonic extra special.
Char some lemon and cucumber to make a gin & tonic extra special.

Gin & tonic has always been one of my favorite cocktails, even — ahem — before I officially turned 21.

We’ll keep that between you and me, of course.

Evocative of a walk through a spring meadow, it’s a sip that’s light, bright, and so refreshing that it’s nearly impossible to resist — even when you’re 20 3/4. Or, uh, something near that.

Now, South American chef Francis Mallmann has taken the classic up a notch by incorporating a bit of fire.

“Gin and Tonic with Burnt Lemon and Cucumber” is from his newest cookbook, “Green Fire” (Artisan), of which I received a review copy. It was written with co-writer Peter Kaminsky and collaborator Donna Gelb.

If you’ve ever watched any of the late-great Anthony Bourdain’s shows, you’re probably already familiar with Mallmann, who owns Siete Fuegos in Argentina, Patagonia Sur in Buenos Aires, El Garzon in Uruguay, 1884 Restaurante in Argentina, and Los Fuegos in Miami.

Usually, he’s shown cooking over an immense live-fire grill with enough adjustable racks and levers to make it resemble some sort of medieval rack.

While some of his previous books were especially challenging because few — if any — of us are equipped to grill quite like that, this one thankfully is not. In fact, the recipes offer options for cooking the dish indoors, too, such as on a cast-iron pan or griddle on the stovetop.

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