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  • Stevo Metzelfeld

Award Winning "Cherry Bomb"

The inspiration for the Cherry Bomb was the specialty glass. Its shape reminded the drink creators of a cherry bomb, and the name for the drink was born. The only cherry that was in the drink was the cherry wood smoke and the chocolate dipped maraschino cherry that was used as a cork to hold the smoke in. The drink itself did not have any cherry. Guests were blown away by an item that was both entertainment and a delicious beverage.

The event was an annual ‘Thank You’ event for the clients of a company. They wanted a special drink for the guests as they entered the building. Many tries went into making the perfect cherry bomb beverage. The beverage had to have a hint of cherry. Often cherries and bourbon are paired, which led us begin with cherry juice and bourbon, but the taste was not pleasing. The next try was cherry juice with vodka, which was better, but not innovative. After several other cherry juice combinations, we gave up on the cherry juice altogether. We instead started thinking about things that tasted like cherries, but were not cherry juice. We tried amaretto which gave us the cherry flavor without the strong punch of the cherry juice. The amaretto mixed with moonshine, and cranberry juice gave us a beautiful red hue and the sweet cherry taste. In order to bring something special to the drink, it was suggested to use a smoking gun to infuse the drink with cherry wood smoke, so that something in the drink actually contained cherry.

Guests were greeted at the event with a tray of the cherry bomb specialty drinks. A comic book style ‘thank you’ sign was strung from the neck of the glass and the drink was passed with a comic book style display with colorful paper straws for ease of drinking. When the cherry was removed from the top, the smoke twisted out of the glass, exciting the noses of the guests and those around them. The straw was then placed in the glass and guests could continue enjoying the drink.

Challenges: The biggest challenge was coming up with a cherry flavored beverage that did not taste like cough syrup. Originally the beverage was going to have cherry juice in it, but it turned out that the cherry flavor was too strong. Another challenge was keeping the smoke in the glass. A regular cork was not visually pleasing or innovative. To keep the smoke in the glass, we decided to use a cherry as a cork. A plain cherry was boring, and it was decided to dip the cherry in chocolate to make it different. A challenge in the presentation was making bombs seem less taboo. We chose the comic book style presentation to make the cherry bombs appear festive and splashy.


1 part Moonshine

1 part Amaretto

2 parts cranberry juice

Mix well and pour into cherry shaped glass. Use cherry wood chips in smoking gun to infuse with smoke. Top with chocolate dipped cherry to hold smoke.

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