5 Sweet and Smoky Mezcal Cocktails For A Summer Night
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5 Sweet and Smoky Mezcal Cocktails for a Perfect Summer Night

Mezcal Cocktails

The best mezcal cocktails blend the sweet and the savory, the sugary and the smoky. (Photo: Алексей Вечерин/Pexels)

Compared to the smooth finish of many a tequila, the smoky bite of mezcal takes up a lot more space within your mixed drink. You’d be hard-pressed to find a mezcal cocktail that doesn’t wear its deeply savory, roasted flavors on its sleeve.

As such, mezcal cocktails need to pack a punch. The flavors within need to stand up to scrutiny, strong enough to pair with a rich mezcal but not so overpowering to turn into a syrupy mess.

Here, we present five sweet and smoky mezcal cocktails. Though any mezcal will do, many cocktail recipes call for cornerstone mezcals like Del Maguey Vida or Ilegal Joven.

Mezcal Mule

Mezcal Cocktails

Photo: Denys Gromov/Pexels

An agave-tinted twist on the classic vodka cocktail? What’s not to like?!

We promise that this cocktail is much more than its slightly punny name. This flavorful variation of the ever-popular Moscow Mule is sure to shake things up for the better. With the addition of passion fruit and cucumber, this recipe has an identity entirely its own.


  • 2 oz Mezcal
  • 2 oz Ginger Beer
  • 1/2 oz Lime Juice
  • 1/2 oz Passion Fruit Puree
  • 1/2 oz Agave Nectar
  • 3 slices of Cucumber


  1. Muddle cucumber and agave nectar in a mixing glass.
  2. Add all other ingredients with ice and shake for 30 seconds.
  3. Strain and pour!

Apple Cider Mezcal Margarita

Mezcal Cocktails

Photo: Tijana Drndarski/Pexels

This seemingly oddball recipe has been making the rounds online recently, but for good reason. Apple and agave are a surprisingly good pairing, and the overall autumnal spirit of this drink feels like a good match with the flavor of smoky mezcal. Drink this one by the fireplace.


  • 2 oz Mezcal
  • 2 oz Apple Cider
  • 1/2 oz Triple Sec
  • 1 oz Fresh Squeezed Lime
  • 1/2 tsp Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 1/4 tsp Sugar
  • 1 Lime Wedge


  1. For the rim, combine sugar, cinnamon, and salt on a small plate. Rub lime wedge around the rim, and dip your glasses in the mix until coated.
  2. Mix mezcal, cider, triple sec and lime juice in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake for 30 seconds.
  3. Pour into your savory-sweet rimmed glasses, and enjoy.

Mango Mezcalero

Mezcal Cocktails

Photo: Gilario Guevara/Pexels

If you belong to the legion of mango-adoring fans, a mango mezcalero might be the perfect drink. It’s not terribly difficult to make, and it packs a slightly spicy punch with the addition of Tajín and spicy tincture.

Created at Brooklyn-based Mexican eatery Oxomoco, this cocktail is a bright and biting combination of tropical fruit and spice.


  • 2 oz Mezcal
  • 1 oz Lime Juice
  • 1 oz Mango Puree
  • 1/2 oz Agave Nectar
  • 3 dashes Spicy Bitters
  • Tajin and Lime Wedge to garnish


  1. Rub lime wedge around the rim of the glass, and rim with Tajin.
  2. Mix all ingredients in a cocktail shaker, add ice and shake for 30 seconds.
  3. Strain and pour!

Ready, Fire, Aim

Mezcal Cocktails

Photo: Youtube/Steve The Bartender

Invented by Steve Schneider of the prohibition-style West Village bar Employees Only, this paradoxically titled cocktail combines the flavor of pineapple, habanero bitters and peppercorn.

If you can’t tell, this one packs a walloping punch. Not for the faint of heart but deliciously unique in every way.


  • 2 oz Mezcal
  • 3/4 oz Pineapple Juice
  • 1 oz Pineapple Syrup
  • 1/2 ounce Lime Juice
  • 3 Dashes Habanero Bitters
    • Can substitute with other spicy bitters
  • Ground Peppercorn for garnish


  1. Add all ingredients except peppercorns into a shaker with ice. Mix until well-chilled.
  2. Double-strain into cocktail glass.
  3. Sprinkle ground peppercorn on top sparingly for garnish.

Naked and Famous

Mezcal Cocktails

Photo: Youtube/The Educated Barfly

This herbaceous mezcal-heavy take on the Aperol Spritz was created by bartender Joaquín Simó at Death and Co in New York City. The recipe boasts only 4 ingredients, each quite different than the last.

Best of all, this is an equal parts mix cocktail! Feel free to change the proportions of this recipe however you see fit.


  • 2 oz Mezcal
  • 2 oz yellow or green Chartreuse
  • 2 oz Aperol
  • 2 oz Lime Juice


  1. Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker. Fill with ice, and shake until cold.
  2. Strain into a cocktail glass and enjoy!

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Pedro Wolfe is the managing editor of Tequila Raiders. With several years of experience writing for the New York Daily News and the Foothills Business Daily under his belt, Pedro aims to combine quality reviews and recipes with incisive articles on the cutting edge of the tequila world. Pedro has traveled to the heartland of the spirits industry in Tequila, Mexico, and has conducted interviews with agave spirits veterans throughout Mexico, South Africa and California. Through this diverse approach, Tequila Raiders aims to celebrate not only tequila but the rich tapestry of agave spirits that spans mezcal, raicilla, bacanora, pulque and so much more.