panchito I’m nearly always disappointed by expensive cocktails, with the sole exception being a well made gin martini. This drink is named after my father (“Pancho”). He never had the opportunity to drink this elixer, but I know that he would have loved it. The alchemy goes like this…

  • 2 parts good mezcal or gin (2 oz if you’re making for 1)
  • 1.5 parts fresh squeezed lime juice (about 1 juicy lime)
  • 1 part brine from a good ferment (your local favorite fermenter might sell you some brine)
  • .5 parts simple syrup
  • (optional) a splash of bitters (I use homemade rhubarb bitters)
  • (optional) fresh mint leaves
  • (optional) sal de gusano, sal de maguey, or whatever interesting non-iodized salt you have around
  • ice cubes

Throw everything except the salt and a few mint leaves into your cocktail shaker, shake it long enough to sing all the words of La Bamba that you remember (about 30 seconds, or until the shaker is damn cold). Put some salt around the rim of your glass. Pour. Enjoy.