Lowder Specs

An Easy List of 178 (Modern) Classics to Know – 2016 Edition

Tequila & Mezcal


Tequila is a sadly underrepresented category in cocktails. This is because this spirit category didn’t really take off until after Prohibition, and by that time it was really too late for the spirit to make its way into the classic cocktail canon. As a result, a lot of people carry the view that tequila doesn’t really work in cocktails, which couldn’t be farther from the truth. Agave spirits are savory, grassy, complex, and endlessly diverse. The trick to making a great tequila cocktail is to find savory and grassy flavors that pair well with the spirit. I have listed a few for you below.

Even with the new wave of tequila cocktails, it’s still rare to see an añejo tequila cocktail. This is true for the same reason that it’s rare to see an 18-year single malt scotch whiskey cocktail – These ingredients are just too expensive to cocktail with. I’m sure that an añejo tequila cocktail is probably delicious, and I’m also sure that it will cost $40+. If your guests specifically request añejo tequila in their cocktail, though, then by all means let a rip.

Speaking of cost/price, tequila and mezcal are another area where you should really watch out with what you’re pouring when you’re making drinks. As these products have gotten popular, we are seeing more and more rare bottlings of single-varietal mezcals and small-batch tequilas. If your bar has multiple bottlings of agave spirit, make sure that you know how much they all cost your bar. The boutique bottles are usually unaged, too, so don’t assume that you can cocktail with something just because the liquid isn’t brown. We’re talking hundreds of dollars here.

Tequila Shaken

1. El Diablo

a. 1.5 oz. Blanco Teqiula

b. .75 oz. Fresh Lime Juice

c. .25 oz. Ginger Syrup

d. .25 oz. Crème de Cassis

i. Shake/strain/Collins glass with ice/top with ginger beer/lime wedge


2. Infante

a. 2 oz. Blanco Tequila

b. 1 oz. Fresh Lime Juice

c. .75 oz. Orgeat

d. 3 dashes Orange Flower Water

e. (optional muddled strawberries)

i. Shake/fine strain/rocks glass with pebble ice/mint

3. Tommy’s Margarita

a. 2 oz. Blanco Tequila

b. 1 oz. Fresh Lime Juice

c. >.5 oz. Agave Syrup

i. Shake/fine strain/rocks glass with ice/no garnish

Tequila Stirred

1. Augie March

a. 2 oz. Reposado Tequila

b. .75 oz. Italian Rosso Vermouth

c. .5 oz. Cynar

i. Stir/strain/rocks glass with large rock/cherry garnish on a pick

2. Oaxacan Old Fashioned

a. 1.5 oz. Reposado Tequila

b. .5 oz. Mezcal

c. Barspoon. Agave Syrup

d. 2 dashes Angostura Bitters

i. Short stir/strain/rocks glass with large rock/flamed orange twist

3. Rosita

a. 1.5 oz. Reposado Tequila

b. .5 oz. Italian Rosso Vermouth

c. .5 oz. French Dry Vermouth

d. .5 oz. Campari

e. 1 dash Angostura bitters

i. Stir/strain/Coupe/orange twist