The Story Behind The Pepper Smash #2

This cocktail comes to us from Ryan Magarian, a bar industry pro with a unique ability to make delicious drinks from unexpected ingredients and flavor combinations.

This one features aquavit and has a tasty, savory profile. “I began messing around with bell peppers in different sorts of drinks,” Magarian says, and this one, Pepper Smash #2, “turned out to be the best of the bunch… It’s something I can envision the Mad Hatter knocking down after a long day bumping around Wonderland."


  • 2 ounces Krogstad Aquavit
  • ¾ ounce fresh lime juice
  • ¾ ounce freshly extracted yellow bell pepper juice
  • 1/2 ounce Grade A maple syrup, blended into 1/4 ounce room-temperature water
  • Mint leaves, to muddle and for garnish


  1. Add about 12 mint leaves and your maple syrup to the bottom of an empty cocktail shaker tin.
  2. Gently muddle the mint leaves in the syrup.
  3. Add the other ingredients and ice, and shake to combine.
  4. Strain over fresh ice into a rocks glass. Garnish with a healthy sprig of mint.

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Updated: 2019-05-06

The Pepper Smash #2 Recipe