This mezcal cocktail, created by Los Angeles bartender Gabriella Mlynarczyk, has a remarkably complex flavor without using any bitters, fancy syrups, or liqueurs. Instead, it calls for pantry ingredients, pairing the earthy agave spirit with tangy pomegranate, savory, warming harissa, and a touch of rose water for a delicate floral aroma.
Reprinted with permission from The One-Bottle Cocktail: More than 80 Recipes With Fresh Ingredients and a Single Spirit by Maggie Hoffman, copyright © 2018. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House.
Why It Works
- Fresh pomegranate juice gives the drink an intense pomegranate flavor and brightness.
- Harissa adds a savory spiciness that complements the pomegranate juice.
- A splash of aquafaba (the liquid in a can of chickpeas) adds a delicately foamy texture while keeping the drink vegan-friendly; egg white is a fine substitute if you don’t have chickpeas around.
- Yield:makes 1 cocktail
- Active time: 2 minutes
- Total time:2 minutes
- 1 1/2 ounces (45ml) mezcal
- 1 1/2 ounces (45ml) pomegranate juice (fresh preferred, see notes)
- 3/4 ounce (22ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 3/4 ounce (22ml) 1:1 simple syrup (see note)
- 1/2 to 1 teaspoon (3 to 5ml) harissa paste, either homemade or store-bought (such as DEA)
- 3/4 teaspoon (4ml) rose water
- Splash aquafaba or egg white (about 1 tablespoon) (see note)
- Pinch each pomegranate seeds, cracked pink peppercorns, and flaky salt (black, smoked, or Maldon), for garnish
Combine mezcal, pomegranate juice, lemon juice, simple syrup, harissa, rose water, and aquafaba in a cocktail shaker and shake vigorously without ice for 20 seconds to emulsify.
Add ice, reseal shaker, and shake until chilled and foamy, about 30 seconds. Strain into an ice-filled rocks glass.
Garnish with a sprinkle of pomegranate seeds, cracked pink peppercorns, and flaky salt.