You’ve heard of a martini, so you might be thinking this is a new twist on the classic drink. If that’s what you’re thinking, you’d be half correct.
There is alcohol involved, but it is not imbibed traditionally – no drinking going on here.
What is a Vaportini?
As you may or may not guess, there is a vapor of sorts involved. The short of it is that a vaportini is a cocktail that you inhale instead of drinking it.
Sound a little crazy? Maybe even a little bit whacky?
Even still, this cocktail is growing in popularity. According to National Public Radio, the “Vaportini is a simple device that evaporates flavor-infused spirits” that you take in by sucking them down through a glass straw.
Imagine, feeling the alcohol without ever taking a sip, because that is reportedly what happens with a vaportini.
Where Did the Vaportini Come From?
Julie Palmer brought the idea back to the States after a trip to Helsinki. Apparently, she visited a sauna where vodka was poured over the coals. As it evaporated, you could feel the alcoholic effects just from being in the sauna.
Upon coming back home, she decided to try recreating the experience at her own cocktail lounge located in Chicago, although this location has since closed.
With the help of her father, she designed the Vaportini device which is a simple glass globe atop a candle, with a glass straw sticking out. The liquid evaporates inside the globe, and then you use a straw to inhale the vapors.
What is it Like to Use a Vaportini?
The easy answer is it depends on who you ask. Over at Reviewed.com, you’ll see an interesting recap of what it is like to actually use a Vaportini.
They mention that inhaling vapors is considerably low-calorie compared to drinking alcohol directly, which sounds good for someone on a diet, but what does it do to your health?
The $ kit comes with the glass globe, glass, and votive. At the 2014 International Home and Housewares Show, Reviewed.com got to try out the Vaportini. They sampled a few different spirits to include vodka, rye, and gin, with surprising feedback – it worked.
Apparently, it takes approximately 20 minutes to burn off a single ounce of alcohol, which is essential when you’re inhaling the fumes.
Are There Health Concerns about Using a Vaportini?
The answer is probably. Let’s think about the way alcohol consumption works. If you inhale something, it is going to go straight into your bloodstream via your respiratory system, aka your lungs.
This can be dangerous because this method directly bypasses the safeguards that would otherwise be in place to prevent alcohol poisoning.
Your liver is no longer filtering out alcohol, and your stomach never gets full. With all of that in mind, it’s easy to overdose. Instead, you can get drunk very quickly, and you may not be able to tell how much alcohol you’ve had.
Something else to consider is whether or not you’re comfortable with your lungs taking in the alcohol because point-blank, your lungs were meant for oxygen, not alcohol.
The bottom line is that you need to watch yourself even more if you use a Vaportini because it is so much easier to “drink” too much this way compared to knocking back a brandy.
So Where Can I Find a Vaportini?
You could order one for yourself over at Vaportini’s website if you wanted to. They have several different styles from the basic kit to more artistic designs like the “Vaportini Krypton” that looks like something out of a vintage Star Trek episode.
Of course, you could also order a “Nature Vaportini,” which may remind you of the intricacy found in an absinthe distiller from the days of yore.
If you’d rather not buy one for yourself, there are a few restaurants and bars that have them available on their menus, especially if you’re not hung up on the name.
In one example, an Austin-based company has a similar design they’re calling the Vapshot that does the same thing as a Vaportini. Here are a couple more places that have embraced the technology behind vaporized alcohol.
Alcoholic Architecture – headquartered in Brisbane, Australia, you can find vaporized alcohol cloud from which you can imbibe. Not quite like a cloud in a globe, but a cloud you walk through – literally.
Pop-up Bars by Alcoholic Architecture – yes, pop-up bars are a thing, and they’re popping up in London to create an immersive experience for those that want to walk through the cloud.
The Garage – located in Denton, Texas. You can find vapor shots up for grabs here in a few different flavors.
The Public House – also located in Denton, Texas. You can find vapor shots to try as well.
Try them at your own risk, and remember, be smart about it!