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How to Make an El Diablo – Happy Cinco De Mayo!

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Cinco de Mayo is upon us! If you are looking for an alternative to the margarita try an El Diablo.  The El Diablo is one of the few Tiki cocktails with tequila.

This cocktail was made popular by Trader Vic.  He may or may not have invented it.  Trader Vic was the first to publish the recipe in the 1940s. Then, in the 1960s Trader Vic had a chain of Mexican restaurants, and the El Diablo was featured at the restaurants. Unfortunately, the Mexican restaurant chain didn’t do well, and the El Diablo drifted into history. Now that tequila is becoming more popular the El Diablo has a chance for a come back.  

A friend of mine on Twitter, @WongsGrogs, gave me a variation on the El Diablo recipe that I like a lot better than the version I tried last year. This version uses Mezcal instead of tequila.  Mezcal is a cousin to tequila that is higher quality.  It has a nice smooth smoky flavor. 

To make the El Diablo you will need:

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

Put the mezcal, fresh lime juice, creme de cassis, and some crushed ice into your cocktail shaker. Shake it up real good. Then, pour the El Diablo, strained, into a high ball glass that is full of crushed ice.  Top the cocktail off with ginger beer. Stir the ingredients together, garnish with a lime wheel and enjoy!

The El Diablo is a nice refreshing alternative to the margarita. It has a great red devilish color.  The mezcal and ginger beer go together nicely.  The creme de cassis gives a nice unique sweetness, and the lime balances it out with a bit of sour.  This is one of those drinks that would be great on a hot day.



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