This drink recipe is the antidote to a grey day.
I actually meant to post this cocktail last month, when February weather was in typical dreary form, but the business of reviving our long-neglected blog took a bit longer than I imaged. Blame our perfectionistic streaks, or the sleepy slowness of late-winter. Whatever. Don’t fret, it is here now.
Now, disclaimer: I’m not saying: fire your therapist and use alcohol to lift your spirits. No. Use common sense and consult medical professionals in case of lasting blue mood. Also, please imbibe responsibly.
All I mean is… this rose-tinted drink is about as far from grey as it gets. It pink, pretty, and as it makes plenty for two, would have been perfect for Valentine’s Day. Or a Galentine's Day. Whatever. Doesn't matter. Your buddies and lovers will just be glad you made this now.
This drink is just a twist on the classic Paloma cocktail, swapping out the tequila for mezcal.
What is mezcal, I hear you ask?
Only just a million times better than tequila.
Now, I personally can’t stand tequila. I’ve tried. I mean, the idea of a margarita intrigues me, but I just can’t get past the taste (maybe, of poor life choices?).
Like tequila, mezcal is made from agave and similarly hecho en Mexico, but something about the way they make the final spirit gives it a complex smokey flavor which tequila lacks.
Of course, with the political climate these days, Mexican imports may see hefty taxes in the future, so Americans, you might want to pick a bottle soon. Just a suggestion from a friend.
In any case, this drink won’t substitute for the beach vacation we’re all craving now, but it is certainly easier to make.
Smoked Paloma Cocktail
- juice of 1 large ruby-red grapefruit (about 250 ml)
- grapefruit soda or club soda, to top up glasses
- 100 ml of Mezcal
- 50 ml simple syrup
- juice of half a lime
- ice, as desired
- course salt, for garnish
- extra grapefruit wedge for garnish
- Citrus juicer of your choice
- Sharp knife (to half citrus, and cut wedges)
- Two highball glasses
- Small saucer for salting glasses
- Juice the grapefruit and one half of a lime.
- Rub a little of the inside of the juiced lime peel along the edge of your highball glasses, before swirling the rims in salt on a shallow saucer.
- Divide the juice between the two glasses. Divide the simple syrup and Mezcal into the glasses.
- Add ice, and fill to top of glass with grapefruit flavored or club soda. Then enjoy!
The best way to get garnishing wedges without opening another grapefruit is to cut the grapefruit in half to juice it, then take a slice off one of the cut ends for your garnish.
Yes, I used lowball glasses in the photo. What resulted was a drink without the need for extra soda. It was more intense, but just as tasty.
P.S. If you're craving more refreshment to bust out of that winter rut, Orange Bourbon Maple Ice Tea is sure to please, and is just as tasty sans bourbon, for those of you who prefer your drinks mocktail.