12 Days of Madtini Holiday Cocktails #11: Mexicocoa

Mexicocoa

Having recently been to the Toronto Tequila Tasting Show, we were only too happy to include this great tasting hot cocktail in our 12 Days of Madtini Holiday Cocktails list. The recipe is adapted from the Food Network , where it appeared courtesy of Jill Davie, Chef de Cuisine at Los Angeles restaurant Josie.

Ingredients

  • 1 oz. blanco tequila
  • 6 oz. Baileys
  • 1 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • Pinch of chili powder
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • Splash of agave nectar
  • Paprika
  • Cinnamon stick

Preparation

Add cocoa powder, chili powder, cinnamon and cayenne pepper to a saucepan on low heat. Stir lightly for a few minutes until you can begin to smell the roasting spices in the air. Using a wooden spoon, slowly add the Baileys. Bring the mixture to a slow simmer. Next, stir in the agave nectar and then remove from the heat. Rim your mug or cocktail glass by dipping it into a saucer of agave nectar and then into a saucer of paprika. Add the tequila, then the hot cocoa and Baileys mixture. Stir with a cinnamon stick and then serve.

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A Madtini Night Out: Lessons in Tequila

Tequila and More ShowToday there are over 100 distilleries in Mexico producing over 600 brands of Tequila, and on Friday night over 30 of these brands were available for tasting at the Tequila and More Ultimate Tasting Experience. In addition to tequila, the show included tourism booths, Mexican handcrafts and of course the delicious foods of Mexico.

The night was a great opportunity for the Madtini Intoxicology crew to learn more about tequila’s history, its production and the different types available. Having so many great brands together in one place allowed us to experience the unique and subtle (sometimes not so subtle) differences between them. We were offered tequila glasses which resembles a small wine glass to sample the different brands. Several brands offered up variations of the ever-popular Margarita cocktail plus a chance to try a tequila cosmopolitan.

Besides knowing which end of the bottle to pour from, I know little about tequila. We learned that Tequila originated around the town of Tequila and comes from fermenting and distilling the sap of the agave plant that grows in the area’s red volcanic soils. Some people assume the agave is a some form of cactus due to its ominous appearance, but it’s actually a relative of the lily. But beware, still its sharp spines of the agave are poisonous and very painful to the skin.

By law, only the Mexican states of Jalisco, Guanajuato, Michoacán, Nayarit, and Tamaulipas can produce a drink called tequila. The types of tequila are Oro (gold) and blanco (silver), which tend to have a bite to them, due to their young age, while añejo (aged) tequilas have a smoother and more complex taste from resting (or resposado).

Most people’s experience with tequila in this area comes from the popular (and delicious) Margarita, or lining up multiple shots. We opted to sip our tequila slowly and enjoy the subtleties of its taste and aromatics. At the end of the evening our clear preference was for the Herradura Resposado, an award-winning tequila with over 16 medals won in international competitions. Herradura first introduced the world to its reposado tequila in 1974, aged for 11 months in toasted white oak barrels provides the tequila with a deep copper colour and smooth taste. It’s aroma and taste provided hints of cinnamon spice, vanilla and is ideal for slow sipping. We’ll be looking for this brand on our next shopping trip.

After this night, we’ll feel much more comfortable while considering and purchasing quality tequila for our cocktails.

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Happy 200th birthday Mexico! Feliz cumpleaños – El Diablo

El DiabloSeptember 16, 2010 is a day of celebration for Mexico. Today they celebrate 200 years of Independence from Spanish rule and 100 years since the Revolution began in 1910 and ousted dictator Porfirio Diaz. Its a chance for Mexicans to celebrate all over the world. We’re not Mexican, but tonight the Madtini labs is hopping with the sounds of Mariachi, awkward dancing and of course ice-filled cocktail shakers. And I swear another couple of these El Diablos and we’ll be brave enough for a round of amateur bullfighting.

Ingredients

  • 2 oz tequila
  • 3/4 oz creme de cassis
  • 1/4 oz fresh lime juice
  • ginger beer

Preparation

Combine tequila, creme de cassis in a cocktail shaker with 3 ice cubes. Shake vigorously and strain into a rocks glass full of ice. Add in lime juice and top with ginger beer. Garnish with a twist of lime.

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