Here are all the best mezcal cocktails to try! This Mexican spirit adds a smoky nuance to mixed drinks from the mule to the margarita.
Are you a mezcal fan? This bold, smoky Mexican liquor has cocktail connoisseurs everywhere swooning. The agave-based spirit is great when it’s balanced into a mixed drink, but take care: too much and it can overpower the flavors!
As cocktail experts with all the great cocktail recipes under our belt, we’ve tinkered with this smoky spirit to find our top mezcal cocktails to make at home. It’s stellar with lime and tequila as as a Mezcal Margarita, but it works just as well with ginger beer as a Mezcal Mule or tequila and bitters as the popular Mezcal Old Fashioned. Here are a few more great ideas on how to infuse mezcal into your favorite cocktails.
One of the best mezcal cocktails? The Mezcal Margarita! Layering the rich, smoky flavor of mezcal with tequila in a margarita is a no-brainer. The agave-based spirit goes hand-in-hand with the tangy lime! If you love smoky flavors and boozy drinks, you’ll fall hard for this margarita.
Want a mezcal cocktail that’s sweet, tart, salty, and smoky all at once? Meet the Mezcal Paloma! The sweetness of grapefruit juice contrasts the tart lime and bubbly soda water. Top it off with a background smokiness of mezcal and a salt rim, and it couldn’t be more fun! This spin on the paloma is definitely worth adding to your collection.
Ingredients: Mezcal, tequila. grapefruit juice, lime juice, simple syrup, soda water
Looking for a complex, sippable mezcal cocktail? Try the mezcal Negroni! This spin on the Negroni takes all that’s good about the classic drink and makes it even better. The intense smokiness of mezcal perfectly balances the sweetness of the vermouth and bitterness of Campari.
If you’re a Mezcal lover, run don’t walk to to mix up this one: the Oaxaca Old Fashioned! This modern classic cocktail is the pristine union of smoky mezcal, tequila, sweet agave and chocolate bitters. Take one sip, and you’ll take your hat off to the bartender who cooked this one up in 2007.
Ingredients: Tequila reposado, Mezcal, Agave syrup or honey, Angostura or chocolate bitters, orange peel
The Naked and Famous cocktail is as impressive as its name! It’s got only four ingredients but beautifully balanced, the perfect harmony of smoky, citrus, bitter and sweet. This modern cocktail was created in 2011, but it’s got nods to the past alluding to a historic cocktail that we know and love. It’s crisp, fresh, modern with a retro flair…in fact, it might be kind of perfect.
Ingredients: Mezcal, Chartreuse, Aperol. lime juice
Love mezcal? Then you must try a mezcal mule! This spin on the classic Moscow mule cocktail has a hint of smoke is full of bubbly, tangy flavor. Using the tequila-based smoky liquor infuses a sharpness to every sip! It’s balanced with tequila to smooth it out: and man, is it good! We love making variations on the Moscow mule, and this one is quite the party trick.
Calling all Mezcal lovers! Here’s a fun way to use this agave-based liquor: the Mezcal Sour! This spin on the classic Pisco Sour is smoky and nuanced. It’s balance with a light, sweet tart body and a frothy egg white foam top. Top it with a shake of bitters and it’s the perfect drink for anyone who loves a bit of smoke!
Swap out the vodka in a Bloody Mary for tequila, and you’ve got a whole new drink: the Bloody Maria! So it's only natural to add mezcal here. That simple switch-up gives big flavor returns. Ise half tequila and half mezcal for a balanced drink with a twinge of smoke.
Ingredients: Tequila, mezcal, tomato juice, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, Horseradish, Mexican hot sauce, celery salt, black pepper
Try the Mezcal Sunrise! It’s beautiful and vibrant, with layered colors of a summer sunset. Here’s the best part: it’s so easy to make! All you need is 3 ingredients. Since mezcal is strong, substitute 1 or 1 ½ ounces mezcal to your taste for the 2 ounces of tequila in the linked recipe, or use 1 ounce each tequila and mezcal.
This sophisticated whiskey drink has a long history and has stood the test of time. It’s got only three ingredients, but there’s so much going on in one sip! Add mezcal and you've got a smoky spin on the classic. Use 1 ounce whiskey and 1 ounce mezcal in the linked recipe.
Want to grab a bottle for all these mezcal cocktails? Here’s a bit more about this smoky Mexican spirit and how it’s made:
Mezcal is a type of alcohol made from the agave plant (like tequila). Tequila is mezcal, but not all mezcal is tequila. Only one type of agave plant (blue agave) makes tequila, but mezcal can be made from 11 different varieties of agave. Read more at Mezcal vs Tequila.
How is mezcal made? What gives mezcal its signature smoky flavor is cooking the agave in pits in the ground. It brings a depth and smokiness you don’t find in tequila.
How much does mezcal cost? A bottle of mezcal on average costs between $20 and $40, but high end brands can cost much more.