Amante Picante Cocktail: Tequila with added spice
What comes to mind when you think of a tequila cocktail? A Margarita perhaps? Tequila Sunrise? Tequini? Aside from the obvious tequila base spirit, the other thing they all have in common is lime juice. The Amante Picante cocktail also uses these two of the ingredients.
There is something about tequila and lime that just works. They are a ubiquitous pairing when it comes to cocktails, much like rum and pineapple. If you type “Tequila” and “Lime” into Difford’s Guide you get over 1,300 cocktails back so to say that there is plenty of choice is a bit of an understatement.
The evening I chose to shake up the Amante Picante, I had started with a fruity cocktail and fancied something a little sharper to drink before dinner. My usual choice is wither a Negroni or a Gibson, but as I was rustling up a Mexican feast in the kitchen, a tequila cocktail seemed more the order of the day. As nice as a Margarita is, I wasn’t really in the mood to prepare the salt rim on the glass. Plus I was running out of triple sec which was an oversight on my
I wondered instead about tequila and tabasco – a little warm-up to the main event as it were. A shot seemed like a bad idea because you can never just have one shot. Searching through one of my many cocktail books, I came across just what I wanted, even though I hadn’t been entirely sure what that was when I picked up the book.
It was no surprise that alongside the tequila (I had a bottle of El Jimador to hand) and tabasco, lime juice was one of the ingredients. Also listed was cucumber and sugar. On paper this seemed like a well balanced cocktail, although as usual, I did make a couple of alterations to my version. The original recipe for the Amante Picante called for cucumber and coriander to be muddled with sugar then lime juice, Green Tabasco Sauce and tequila were added and shaken over ice. I decided to muddle the cucumber and coriander with wedges of lime then added only the tequila before shaking it.
Having tasted the base cocktail, I added my simple syrup and Tabasco Sauce to taste. This gave me a lot more control over how the finished cocktail tasted and I didn’t run the risk of over sweetening the end result. I chose to garnish with a couple of cucumber wheels as I found that there was just enough lime flavour to enhance the tequila and balance the sweetness. The Amante Picante really was just the right aperitif cocktail for my Mexican feast.
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AMANTE PICANTE COCKTAIL RECIPE
2 slices cucumber
2 sprigs fresh coriander
½ a lime
2 oz. Blanco Tequila
Simple Syrup and Green Tabasco Sauce to taste
Muddle cucumber, coriander and half a lime in mixing glass. Add the tequila and shake thoroughly with ice. Check for dilution then add simple syrup and Green Tabasco Sauce to taste. Shake again and double-strain into chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a cucumber wheel for a cooling taste, wedge of lime for something a little sharper or, if you are feeling brave, a green Jalapeno pepper.