In the past few months, I've become obsessed with mezcal, trying to figure out how I could use it in cocktails in ways other than simply as a substitute for tequila in your traditional margarita. This contest gave me the opportunity to really open up and explore this amazing spirit, experimenting and playing with flavors traditionally associated with Mexico. Be prepared though, this cocktail packs some heat and it's really up to you as to how hot you want it to be.



 1.50 oz Mr. Black Coffee Liqueur
 1 oz Mezcal(Ilegal Mezcal Joven)
 1 oz Patron XO Cafe Incendio
 0.25 oz Chile Liqueur (Ancho Reyes Ancho )
 8 drops Bittermens Xocolatl Mole Bitters
 Flamed Orange Peel



In mixing glass, combine all ingredients


Add ice and stir for 20-30 seconds


Strain contents into rocks glass over ice


Garnish with flamed orange peel and drop peel into glass.


Note: Flaming an orange peel is pretty simple but takes a little practice. Rather than using the "disc method" I see a lot of people use, I like to take a swath of peel (stem to navel) using a knife as opposed to a peeler, making sure you don't cut so deep you get any flesh as well. Light a match (always, always use a match) and let the sulphur burn off, and then lightly run the flame over the peel for just a second or two (this helps to release the oils). With the match to the side and above the glass, squeeze the peel to express the oil through the flame on the surface of the cocktail. If none of this makes sense, there's a ton of Youtube videos available on how to do it. Just find the method you're most comfortable with.

Note: a good quality chocolate liqueur may be substituted for the Patron, but you'll likely want to increase the Ancho Reyes a bit as the Patron has a bit of chile in it already. Don't add too much though as it can quickly overpower the cocktail.

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