A michelada is a spicy Mexican cocktail that’s a traditional hangover cure. Tomato juice and beer are the primary ingredients but it’s not complete without the lime and hot sauce.
In Mexico, a michelada is the customary morning-after equivalent of a Bloody Mary—except it’s lighter, less tomato-y, and all around lovelier. While there’s more than one way to mix a michelada, we’re rather partial to the below recipe. Some folks add a drop or three of Worcestershire sauce, others play with the proportion of lime to tomato juice, a few eschew the tomato juice entirely, and at least one person on the planet simply shakes 3 parts beer to 1 part bloody mary mix. Just about all of them caution you to add hot sauce “to taste.” (Stateside, Tabasco may be the most commonly reached for source of heat, but the author prefers a Mexican hot sauce such as Cholula. You may as well just set out whatever bottles of hot sauce you have and let each person add whichever hot sauce in whatever amount they desire.) However you make yours, if it has cerveza, citrus, at least a little tomato juice, and some hot sauce, you can say you’ve made a michelada. Actually, if you follow this recipe, you can say you’ve made two micheladas, as it makes an incredibly generous pour with enough to share. This recipe has been updated. Originally published June 15, 2012.–Renee Schettler Rossi
How To Pronounce Michelada
Just like there’s more than one way to make a michelada, there’s also more than one way to say “michelada.” That said, we’ve always erred toward the pronunciation “meeeeee chay lah dah.” Sorta just rolls off the tongue. Which is good, because after a few sips of this cocktail we’re too lazy for anything that requires any effort.
- Quick Glance
- 5 M
- 5 M
- Serves 2
- For the salty spicy rim (optional)
- 1 tablespoon sea salt, fine or coarse
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ancho chile powder
- 1 lime wedge
- For the michelada
- 2 tablespoons tomato juice
- 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
- 1 tablespoon store-bought or homemade hot sauce (or less to taste)
- Ice cubes
- One 12-ounce bottle cerveza (that is, a pale Mexican beer, nothing dark like Modelo or Dos Equis), chilled
- 2 lime wedges
- Make the salty spicy rim (optional)
- 1. On a small plate, stir together the salt and ancho chile powder. Slick the rim of a tall glass with the lime wedge by forcing the wedge onto the rim and running it around the perimeter. Then dip the rim in the salt mixture to coat it. Toss the spent lime wedge to the side and compost or reserve for another use.
- Make the michelada
- 2. Pour the tomato juice, lime juice, and hot pepper sauce into a pitcher or very tall glass and stir to mix well. Divide the mixture among 2 glasses. Add enough ice cubes to each glass to fill it about 2/3 full. Gradually pour in the beer and serve with a lime wedge on the side. We think you can take it from here…although be sure to consume your michelada relatively quickly, before the ice has a chance to melt into a puddle and dilute your perfect proportions.
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