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I used to hate spicy drinks. You know the ones that are so hot it numbs your tastebuds and makes you thirsty? Then I discovered more balanced cocktails with some heat that highlighted all the flavors in the cocktail without making me sweat. I was hooked from then on. When I was creating a post about spicy gin cocktails, I found a spirit that really helped kick up the heat. I had made Ancho Reyes cocktails before, but the pairing with gin was delicious and unexpected. I researched some recipes and created some other amazing flavor combinations. Here are a few of my favorite Ancho Reyes cocktail recipes that I thought you might enjoy as well. Cheers!

What is Ancho Reyes?

ancho reyes cocktails bottles of both flavors of ancho reyes

Ancho Reyes is a liqueur produced in Puebla City, Mexico since 2013. It is based on a recipe for homemade concoctions (or menjurjes) from 1927 from the same city. The original (red) version of the liqueur is made from Puebla City’s native ancho chiles, which are late harvest poblano peppers that are dried for 2-3 weeks. The Verde (green) version was introduced in 2016 and features early harvested, fire-roasted poblano chiles in addition to the ancho chiles. Both versions of the liqueur are 40% ABV.

ancho reyes cocktails red and green side by side in shot glasses

Ancho Reyes Chile Ancho Liqueur is rich and complex with a smoky finish. The Ancho Reyes Chile Poblano Liqueur has a crisp and herbal flavor with a bright spicy finish. I really like both versions of Ancho Reyes, but I have found the Red/Ancho version to be the most versatile in cocktails. For all of the Ancho Reyes cocktail recipes below you can use either version of the liqueur. It’s mostly just a matter of personal taste.

Ancho Reyes Cocktails

1. Tierra del Fuego

This recipe is from fellow Midwestern blogger in Tulsa, The Humble Garnish. Andrew created this Negroni riff for the 2016 Negroni Week. It’s a really incredible cocktail that is easy to make and looks gorgeous in a glass. I love any drink with tequila and mezcal, and this one is a real treat. If you prefer a slightly less bitter version, you can swap out Aperol for the Campari. For the bitters, you can use any smoky and spicy bitters you have. I used three dashes each of Crude Bitters “Pooter” (smoke and salt) and “No No” bitters. You can also try Hella Cocktail Smoked Chili Bitters or Pink House Alchemy Smoldered Bitters.

Tierra del Fuego

Keyword: ancho reyes, campari, mezcal, tequila
Author: The Humble Garnish

Ingredients

  • 1 oz Campari
  • 1 oz Ancho Reyes
  • 0.5 oz mezcal
  • 0.5 oz tequila
  • 6 dashes smoky and spicy bitters

Instructions

  • Add all ingredients to a mixing glass with ice.
  • Stir until chilled and strain into a rocks glass with a large ice cube.
  • Garnish with an orange peel.

2. Bee Sting

ancho reyes cocktails bee sting

Popular Ancho Reyes cocktails call for plenty of tequila and mezcal, but this one very cleverly uses gin as its base spirit. This is a delicious riff on the Bee’s Knees cocktail. It maintains the standard recipe of that cocktail while adding in a bit of heat. For a version featuring a hot honey syrup in place of the Ancho Reyes, check out this post. I love these coupe glasses because they are small enough to keep in my freezer and they’re dishwasher safe.

Bee Sting

Keyword: ancho reyes, citrus cocktails, gin, honey

Ingredients

  • 2 oz gin
  • 0.75 oz lemon juice
  • 0.75 oz honey syrup (2:1, honey:water over heat)
  • 0.5 oz Ancho Reyes

Instructions

  • Add all ingredients to a shaker with ice.
  • Shake well (20 seconds) until drink is properly chilled and diluted.
  • Strain into a chilled coupe glass and garnish with lemon.

3. Spicy Verde Margarita

spicy margarita ancho reyes cocktails

It really wouldn’t be a proper post about Ancho Reyes cocktails without the appearance of a spicy margarita. I love mixing up a perfect margarita with additions of other flavors. Whether it’s tepache or bitters or a fruit juice, I love a little zing of something extra. The base margarita recipe is so solid, there’s really nothing you can add that won’t work. In the case of Ancho Reyes, I really like the green version in this drink. I like using the Tommy’s Margarita recipe best.

Spicy Verde Margarita

Keyword: ancho reyes, margarita, tequila

Ingredients

  • 1.5 oz tequila blanco
  • 1 oz Ancho Reyes Verde
  • 1 oz lime juice
  • 0.5 oz agave

Instructions

  • Add all ingredients to a shaker with ice (and a pinch of salt if you like).
  • Shake 20-30 seconds until the liquid is chilled.
  • Dirty dump (pour without straining) into a high ball or margarita glass with more ice.

4. Ancho Daiquiri

When it comes to cocktails, a classic daiquiri is one of my favorite drinks. I love citrus cocktails and this simple recipe is so easy to tweak into different directions. (This granny smith version is one of my current favorites.) For this spicy version, I used Ancho Reyes and Probitas Rum, which is a lovely blended rum with a hint of funkiness. The two spirits together are so good!

Ancho Daiquiri

Keyword: ancho reyes, rum

Ingredients

  • 1.5 oz rum
  • 0.75 oz lime juice
  • 0.75 oz Ancho Reyes
  • 0.5 oz agave

Instructions

  • Add all ingredients to a shaker with ice.
  • Shake for 20-30 seconds and strain into a glass.

And there you have four delicious Ancho Reyes cocktails to try. If you’re looking for something really unique, and you like avocado and cilantro, check out this recipe from Mama Rabbit at Park MGM.

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