A drink based on palo santo and grasshoppers. A cocktail inspired by Leonora Carrington’s tarot made with red berries and lavender. A margarita evocative of the flavors of tacos al pastor. These are a few of the creations that can be experienced when you visit the most renowned mixologists in Mexico City. Here’s where to get to know them and their concoctions.
Bartender: José Luis León
This popular cocktail venue located in the Roma Norte neighborhood became one of the best bars in Mexico by taking the fourth spot on The World’s 50 Best Bars list in 2022.
Licorería Limantour operates under the direction of Benjamín Padrón and creative master bartender José Luis León, who was awarded the best bartender in the country in 2021 after winning World Class Mexico, the biggest cocktail competition in the world.
Limantour’s cocktails range from the famous margarita al pastor, which ingeniously retakes this emblematic flavor of Mexican cuisine in a drink of pineapple, cilantro and serrano chile, to the Nispero, made with gin, loquat soda, black tea, dry vermouth, and apricot.
Limantour’s must-try for the holiday season? The now famous Miracle pop-up, an ephemeral space where they present a special menu of 13 Christmas-inspired drinks, including cocktails and shots, with tequila, gin, rum, and even chocolate.
Limantour’s Christmas pop-up, a separate space inside the bar, runs until December 23 this year.
Av. Álvaro Obregón 106, Roma Norte, CDMX
T. 55 5264 4122
Bartender: José Eduardo Olivas Caro
Recognized as mixologist of the year by the Premio al Mérito Restaurantero (Restaurant Merit Award), and finalist for World Class Mexico 2022, José Eduardo Olivas Caro mans the bar of this enigmatic speakeasy in Colonia Juárez.
Handshake, which has also been awarded as the second best bar in North America, is a favorite for its high-end cocktails, with drinks like the Santo, made with Bacardi Carta Blanca, hoja santa, palo santo, and chapulin (grasshopper), the Rose Negroni, made with gin, cocchi americano, Di Battista, Greek yogurt and tutti frutti, or a blue cheese martini.
“Cocktailing has evolved to a point where we can create and access so many ways to experiment, develop and express ourselves, allowing us to offer a different experience than the usual,'” Olivas notes on his social networks.
According to The World’s 50 Best Bars, at Handshake “many of the creations seem simple enough, but when you taste them, you’re treated to an explosion of unexpected flavors.”
Calle Amberes 65, Juárez, CDMX
T. 55 7638 9786
Bartender: Jaime Morales López
You’ll find Jaime Morales López behind the bar of this restaurant and cocktail bar in Roma, winner of this year’s World Class Mexico, representing Mexico in the thirteenth edition of the international competition.
Styled after The Great Gatsby’s art nouveau look, Casa Prunes is housed in an old mansion, offering cocktails such as the Plátano Tabasco and Dominico Homemade Champagne, with homemade sparkling wine made from banana fermented for six months using the champenoise method, or the Palomazo, based on Patron Silver, grapefruit, Topo Chico, beet shrub and lemon.
Its most famous attraction is the bar itself, one of the highest in Latin America, measuring nine meters high, and using a pulley system to keep the bottles within reach.
Calle Chihuahua 78, Roma Norte, CDMX
T. 55 6380 8378
Rayo Cocktail Bar
Bartender: Miguel Ángel Bolaños Rodríguez
In an old horchatería located in a large house in the Roma neighborhood, Rayo Cocktail Bar was a surprise addition in 2022 to the 50 Best Discovery list.
Run by a team led by Bacardi Legacy Mexico award-winning bartender Miguel Bolaños, this new creative mixology bar offers a menu of 26 drinks, including 13 signature cocktails and 13 classics.
Some of the highlights are the Gallito, made from mezcal and rum, tropical oil, lemon and orange and pineapple juices, and the Lola Casanova, based on Bacanora Mujer de Piedra, orange liqueur, cinnamon syrup, lime and pineapple juices, coconut horchata and Angostura bitters.
Their menu is almost 100% sustainable and they use mainly Mexican spirits and products.
Calle Salamanca 85, Roma Norte, CDMX
T. 55 6385 2051
Bartender: Nicolás Castro
Self-described as eclectic, innovative and unpretentious, Fifty Mils is hailed as one of the best bars in Mexico City with multi-award-winning mixologist Nicolás Castro as bar manager and head bartender. Castro has competed in several cocktail tournaments such as the Angostura Challenge and Bacardi Legacy in Argentina, and, in 2018, he won World Class Peru.
The bar inside the Four Seasons hotel on the city’s grand Avenida Paseo de la Reforma features a cocktail menu with local ingredients and artisanal techniques in each creation, both classic drinks interpreted in a new way and original creations.
Served along a seven-meter marble bar, Fifty Mils’ concoctions are inspired by Leonora Carrington’s tarot with flavors such as raspberry, hibiscus, mint, lavender, and black clove tincture. Here, bar goers will also find fun takes on cocktails like the Lola Bunny, with Tanqueray Ten, carrot juice, habanero and lemongrass syrup, orange and cardamom bitters, and beet shrub.
Av. Paseo de la Reforma 500, Juárez, CDMX
T. 55 5230 1818