Mezcal Sour

By Timo Torner / Last updated on March 20, 2023

Our Mezcal Sour cocktail is a smoky, herbal, and sour sip. It's a perfect way to introduce the Mexican spirit to people who never tried this agave-based product.
Mezcal Sour cocktail

The Mezcal Sour and Sour cocktails, in general, are among my favorite drinks and are always a crowd-pleaser.

Whether it's Whiskey SourGin Sour, or Rum Sour - all these cocktails are as superb as they are simple. And Mezcal being such an unusual but fabulous spirit base for cocktails, this smoky Sour is not to be missed on that list. The recipe below is our adaption of a similar drink served at Honey's in New York City. 

The bold smoky flavor in Mezcal can be overpowering. So simply replacing Whiskey, Gin or Rum in other Sour recipes with the smoky agave spirit is inadequate. Instead, we need some additional flavors to get the balance right.

Ingredients for a Mezcal Sour

So, let me first explain the ingredients of this drink.

  • Mezcal: As a base, we need a decent-quality Mezcal. I recommend going with a top-shelf one, but you don't have to overspend. A Montelobos Espadin works great as well as a standard Del Maguey Vida. In my recipe, I used an Alipus San Andres Mezcal. -For more inspiration, check out the list of our Mezcal recommendations.
  • Agave nectar: To further pronounce the taste of agave in the Mezcal, I suggest using agave nectar instead of standard simple syrup. However, you won't need much of it as there is another sweet ingredient to balance the drink, add extra flavor to soften the bite of the spirit. So, if you only have simple syrup at hand, that will work fine, too.
  • Amaro: Amaro is a category of Italian herbal liqueurs, commonly between 16% and 40% ABV, and made by infusing an alcoholic base with herbs, flowers, barks, and roots from the region. The original recipe includes either Amaro Nonino or Amaro Montenegro, but for my Mezcal Sour, I prefer the lower-ABV Amaro Cynar. Cynar only contains 16% of alcohol. And apart from artichoke, it includes 12 other different herbs and plants.
  • Citrus: Like every sour cocktail, the drink also needs a citric component for balance. I strongly advise using freshly squeezed lime juice because that adds the bite a Sour needs. If you're feeling experimental, you could also age your lime juice before using it on your cocktail. The result is a rounder and more mellow juice. Check out this lime juice guide to find out more about this approach.
  • Egg white: The foamy top on the drink is created by adding egg white to the mix. If you prefer a vegan version, you could use aquafaba instead of egg white.

How to make it

The process of shaking a proper Mezcal Sour is the same as for other sour cocktail with egg white. The most important thing to consider is using a two-step shaking approach. In the first step (dry shake), you add all the ingredients except for Angostura bitters and shake them without ice.

Leaving out the ice helps with the aeration process of the egg white and ultimately leads to a thicker foam. After that, you shake the drink for a second time, but now with ice.

In case you're still struggling to get a decent foam, there's a clever trick you can consider: 

During the first shake, add the coil of your Hawthorne strainer into your cocktail shaker and dry shake your drink with it. That will supercharge the frothing of your egg white or aquafaba and creates a perfect foam for your drinks.

Mezcal Sour cocktail

Mezcal Sour

This Mezcal cocktail is a perfect serve. A bitter-sweet, tangy, smoky, and herbal cocktail.
Prep Time: 3 minutes
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: mezcal, sour cocktail
Servings: 1
Calories: 235kcal
Cost: $4.30


  • 1 Jigger
  • 1 Cocktail Shaker
  • 1 Hawthorne Strainer
  • 1 Bar spoon


  • 1.5 oz Mezcal
  • 1.5 oz Freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 oz Cynar
  • 1 bsp Agave nectar
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 dashes Angostura bitters
  • 1 Dehydrated lime wheel


  • Add all ingredients except the Angostura bitters and lime wheel into a cocktail shaker and shake without ice for about 10 to 15 seconds.
    1.5 oz Mezcal, 1.5 oz Freshly squeezed lime juice, 1 oz Cynar, 1 bsp Agave nectar, 1 egg white, 2 dashes Angostura bitters
  • Open your shaker and add ice before shaking again for a few seconds, then double-strain into an ice-filled rocks glass.
  • Garnish with Angostura bitters and dehydrated lime wheel.
    1 Dehydrated lime wheel


Serving: 5.5ozCalories: 235kcalCarbohydrates: 18.6gProtein: 3.62gFat: 0.1gSodium: 19.02mgPotassium: 109.14mgSugar: 14.81gVitamin C: 15.72mgCalcium: 3.16mgIron: 0.15mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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