Tequila and mezcal are staples of warm-weather cocktails—everyone loves a refreshing frozen margarita on a hot day. But you don't need to put these delicious spirits away just because the weather cools down. From combinations of mezcal and brandy to tequila and mushrooms, we've rounded up our favorite fall tequila and mezcal cocktails.
Seasonal produce can take a summery cocktail and make it perfect for fall. To make the Moradita, we add an intensely hued beet puree to a margarita. The richness of the puree is tempered by using a jalapeño-infused tequila. The Truffle Pig uses an even more unexpected ingredient: mushrooms. Hen of the woods mushrooms are browned and muddled, then mixed with añejo tequila, lemon juice, and a rosemary-cinnamon honey syrup.
Smoky mezcal adds intrigue to all sorts of cocktails. The Velvet Gentleman expertly walks the line between dark and refreshing, with rich brandy being perked up by fruity Cocchi Americano Rosa, grapefruit bitters, and mezcal. The Shaman is a tropical drink balanced enough to drink year-round, with pisco and pineapple juice being matched with cinnamon syrup, a healthy dose of Angostura bitters, and a float of mezcal.
Creamy punches are usually made with spirits like brandy or bourbon, but there's no need to stop there. For a south-of-the-border twist, our Desert Snow cocktail takes homemade almond and rice horchata and adds tequila and Velvet Falernum.
Find all of these drinks and more in our collection of fall tequila and mezcal cocktails.
Recently some unexpected vegetables—ramps, butternut squash, and beets—have started showing up in creative cocktails. Now, mushrooms are getting in on the fun(gus). At Dallas farm-to-table restaurant FT33, The Truffle Pig features a refreshing mix of tequila, lemon juice, and muddled mushrooms sweetened with rosemary-cinnamon honey. Topping it off is a seared hen of the woods mushroom.
This refreshing, fragrant drink is served at The Marliave restaurant in Boston. It mixes grassy tequila with spicy ginger beer and a syrup infused with bergamot-flavored Earl Grey tea.
Get the recipe for Boston Tea Party »
Chipotle-infused mezcal lends a subtle kick and Cynar a hint of mystery to this refreshing tequila drink flavored with mint and lime.
Jerusalem’s most vibrant watering hole is Yudale, where the bar offers sui generis drinks that include this delicious, tequila-based creation infused with rose petals and cumin. The name is an homage to the many journalists who tramp through town. Get the recipe for Margarita Al Jazeera »
Leo Robitschek, bar director of The NoMad restaurant in New York City, pairs smoky mezcal and cinnamon syrup with floral pisco and fresh pineapple juice for this layered, tropical-style drink. Get the recipe for The Shaman »
A jalapeño-infused, blood-colored tequila and beet cocktail, the Moradita (“Little Death”), is a fresh, nearly healthy-tasting drink with some real body and a balancing hint of elegant richness.
The vegetal sweetness of licorice-like fennel pairs beautifully with tart grapefruit and smoky mescal in this cocktail from the Manhattan restaurant Perla. Get the recipe for Fennel Delight »
Bitter liqueurs and a touch of sweet vermouth bring balance to grassy, briny tequila in this riff on the classic bourbon drink, adapted from a recipe by bartender Mark Drew.
Aged reposado tequila adds smooth vanilla notes to a light, citrusy twist on a classic old fashioned from Pittsburgh restaurant Verde Mexican Kitchen & Cantina. Get the recipe for Tequila Old Fashioned »
Adding tequila and lime zest to a rich homemade horchata is an impressive egg and dairy free alternative to eggnog. For extra citrus flavor, twist a strip of lime peel above each glass and rub it around the rim before adding it to the drink.