Monte Paloma Cocktail Recipe

By Timo Torner / Last updated on July 30, 2023

The Monte Paloma is a riff on the original Paloma recipe. The drink is a tasty combination of Amaro Montenegro and grapefruit with the characteristic agave notes from tequila.
Monte Paloma cocktail - Amaro Montenegro and grapefruit juice

A well-made Paloma is a delicious and refreshing drink. Yet, sometimes you might want a bit more complexity in your cocktail. The Monte Paloma delivers on that by adding Amaro to the mix.

Amaro Montenegro and grapefruit juice is a surprisingly good combination. Mixed with tequila, agave syrup, and a splash of fresh lime juice, you get an exciting sip.

Quick Facts Monte Paloma

  • Method: shaken 
  • Flavor profile: bittersweet, slightly herbal, complex
  • How to serve it: over ice
  • Best glassware: highball glass
  • Alcohol content: ~ 15%, 21 grams of alcohol per serving
Monte Paloma cocktail - Amaro Montenegro and grapefruit juice

Monte Paloma Recipe

A riff on the classic Paloma with additional herbal flavors.
Prep Time: 3 minutes
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: agave, amaro, grapefruit, lime, Tequila
Servings: 1
Calories: 230kcal
Cost: $3.80


  • 1 Jigger
  • 1 Cocktail Shaker
  • 1 Hawthorne Strainer


  • 1.5 oz Tequila
  • 1 oz Amaro Montenegro
  • 1 oz Pink grapefruit juice
  • 0.5 oz Lime juice
  • 0.25 oz Agave syrup
  • 0.5 oz Soda water


  • Add Tequila, Amaro Montenegro, grapefruit juice, lime juice, and agave syrup into a cocktail shaker with ice.
    1.5 oz Tequila, 1 oz Amaro Montenegro, 1 oz Pink grapefruit juice, 0.5 oz Lime juice, 0.25 oz Agave syrup
  • Shake until the drink is well-chilled.
  • Strain into a Highball glass filled with ice.
  • Top with soda water.
    0.5 oz Soda water
  • Optionally garnish with grapefruit wheel or wedge.


Serving: 5ozCalories: 230kcalCarbohydrates: 5.52gProtein: 0.1gFat: 0.1gSaturated Fat: 0.03gSodium: 4.33mgPotassium: 64.48mgSugar: 4.84gVitamin C: 16.94mgCalcium: 8.24mgIron: 0.06mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Ingredients & Recommendations

Amaro and tequila don't sound like your typical cocktail base. It's certainly not something you're used to seeing on cocktail menus. However, the combination works a treat.

To bring it all together, you need something more than tequila and herbal liqueur. So, here's the shopping list for this tasty Paloma riff:

  • Tequila: Especially when using Reposado, a slightly aged type of tequila, the blend with Amaro Montenegro is fantastic.
  • Amaro Montenegro is among the more popular Amari in Italy. The bittersweet herbal liqueur from Bologna is infused with 40 different botanical ingredients and has an ABV of 23%.
  • Grapefruit juice: the bittersweet citrus fruit is a winner when combined with tequila. Make it freshly squeeze for a perfect Monte Paloma Cocktail.
  • Lime juice: same here - make it freshly squeezed. Taking shortcuts with citrus fruits usually is not worth it in mixology because the bottled versions don't deliver that fresh and natural tanginess.
  • Agave syrup: Use agave syrup instead of regular simple syrup. Having the same base as tequila, it fits this recipe sensationally.
  • Soda water: Make sure to use a fresh bottle with enough carbonation. Otherwise, your drink falls flat.

Best Practices for the Monte Paloma

Apart from using quality ingredients, including fresh juices and fizzy soda, as mentioned above, there are a couple of things to keep in mind when mixing.

First, this cocktail is shaken and served over ice. To make sure you don't water it down too much, use large cubes for mixing and shake for no more than 10 seconds. Also, serve your drink over large, clear ice cubes since those will melt slower.

Second, don't add the soda to your cocktail shaker because if you do, it will lose most of its fizz.

Variations on the Montenegro Paloma 

There are many ways to make this bittersweet twist on the Paloma cocktail. The recipe above is our favorite because it balances the flavors of the different ingredients so beautifully.

However, you can also make a simpler version of the Monte Paloma without agave syrup or lime juice. 

Another possible twist on the recipe is to skip the soda water. It takes away a bit of the freshness but pronounces the other flavors more instead.

More About Amari

Amari are herbal liqueurs from Italy known for their bittersweet, herbal flavors. Amaro Montenegro is a well-liked, relatively little bitter member of this family with notes of orange zest, vanilla, coriander, and cloves.

Generally, these herbal liqueurs are made by infusing a base spirit with various herbs, roots, flowers, bark, and other ingredients. Lower ABV products like Aperol contain only 11% alcohol, Amaro Montenegro clocks in at 23% vol, and others have up to 40%.

Related Recipes

Another superb example of pairing an agave spirit and an Amaro is the Mezcal Sour cocktail. This drink also benefits from the herbal complexity added by an Amaro. If you look for more drinks with grapefruit, try these:

Monte Paloma FAQs

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