Okay people. It’s Sunday afternoon on Martha’s Vineyard. What cool project can we do to stretch our minds, stimulate our senses, and advance the cause of humanity?

I know! Let’s make bacon chocolate bourbon shots!

Why? Bourbon: because this is a drinks column. Chocolate: because anything sugary pairs well with bourbon. That’s why bourbon and Coke is a thing, and bourbon and Diet Coke is not.

And bacon, well, because bacon.

Steve Myrick

But we’re not going to make just any bacon chocolate bourbon shots. No, no. We’re going to make bacon chocolate bourbon shots with a burst of Martha’s Vineyard flavor.

Off to beautiful Chilmark, where the farm stand at the Grey Barn yields up some gorgeous smoked bacon, from porkers raised on the certified organic premises. At $14 a pound, it’s a little pricy, but why skimp on quality for such an important project?

For chocolate, let’s choose State Road’s East Chop Bar, pure milk chocolate with 39 percent cocoa. Also because it’s an easy stop at Cronig’s Market, on the way back from that long, exhausting drive to Chilmark.

I would dearly love to use an Island-made bourbon for this project, and I have already signed on as the volunteer bourbon consultant for a planned distillery. For now the choice is Eagle Rare, a ten-year-old single-barrel bourbon imported from Kentucky and available at a surprisingly modest price at local package stores.

Three reliable adults who are not at all fearful of having fun and embarrassing themselves gather in the makeshift Thirsty test kitchen. Two of them are named Martin, which further insures hilarity. They are of absolutely no help.

Have you ever tried to mold bacon? It’s hard. We tried covering sections of a paper towel roll with tin foil, then wrapping bacon around them to form a small bacon shot glass, because we found the idea on the Internet and it has to be true. We molded six, but when they came out of the oven, only two looked like they had any hope of holding bourbon. All those who actually helped with the project ate the hopeless bacon immediately.

Next, we zapped some chocolate in the microwave. The East Chop Bar melts into a perfect consistency, which we poured into the bacon shot glasses and tipped around until the chocolate filled in all the holes.

It was very difficult waiting for them to cool, so we prepared our palates by sampling the bourbon. By some miracle, the bacon chocolate glasses hold a splash of bourbon without dripping any of the precious amber liquid on the floor. A swirl or two of the room-temperature bourbon melts a little of the chocolate just in time to be tossed back with a flourish.

Refills all around risk collapsing the delicate vessels, so to avoid disaster, we quickly popped the whole thing into our mouths. We can declare this project a success. The salty bacon and sweet chocolate blend perfectly with the caramel and vanilla notes of the bourbon.

The glow of bacon chocolate bourbon shots may perhaps affect judgment, but
I am satisfied that we have nudged civilization forward a bit, in a Vineyard kind
of way.