Friday, December 28, 2007

A Local Mexican Drink Update

Getting ready to make Cerveza Michelada

Time for another local drink update. The first one is particularly interesting since my colleagues took me to a tiny little cantina that was packed with locals and a mariachi band. This wood and stucco based establishment was so old that it almost felt as if you could tie up your horse to a hitching rail outside before entering. But it was much smaller than what one often sees in the movies, and they only had two types of beers.

There's a lot more fun in store here. You know how when one orders a bottle of Corona (presumably anywhere outside of Mexico), the bartender shoves a wedge of lime into the bottleneck? Here, drinking beer is taken to another level in the form of a michelada. Basically, one takes two entire limes and squeezes the juice into a glass. Then one adds things like Worcestershire sauce or Maggi sauce (and even hot sauce if you want to make the cubana variety) and heavily salts the rim before pouring in the beer. With so much lime juice involved, this created a very sour beer, and was a bit odd at first given all of the salt and hot sauce involved too. But once past the initial surprise (you really couldn't taste the beer after all of that), it did make for some easy drinking, especially when paired with some of the bar snacks like chili powder-flavored nuts and - you guessed it - pork rinds!

Tequila BanderaNext up here is tequila bandera, or literally "flag tequila." The idea is that the colors of the three glasses here are like those of the Mexican flag. Start with a sip of the green lime juice, follow that with a sip of the tequila, and then chase it with a sip of the spicy red stuff (a bit like Bloody Mary mix). The strong taste of each one of these contrasted so much with the next one that it really did come together nicely.

Lyncott YakinFinally, here is a yogurt-based drink that I suppose is like a local version of Yakult, complete with all of those "probiotics." Oddly, I think the label said that it was actually from the US, so I'm not completely sure if this is local or not. But it's the first time that I'd seen it.

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