A smoky little number with plenty of eye candy.

We served this crimson cocktail, inspired by the Little Red Corvette at Pêche in New Orleans, at the Milk Punch “Up on the Rooftop” Cocktail Class—and it was the afternoon’s greatest hit!

And honey I say
Little Red Corvette…ooh hoo hoo
Honey, you got-ta slow down…

Bartenders often pair the bright, tart flavors of hibiscus with a bold mezcal. For some participants, it was a first taste of this smoky spirit and the flavor combo made them instant fans!

Mezcal 101
Is mezcal a type of tequila? Technically, it’s the other way around! Both spirits are made from the agave plant, but in the mezcal making process, the piñas or the hearts of the agave plants are roasted, giving mezcal its smoky characteristics.

Like tequila, mezcal can be unaged (blanco) or left to rest in oak barrels (reposado and añejo). Tequila may only be made from one type of agave (Blue Weber) while mezcal is made from a variety of agaves, typically Espadín.

Choosing a mezcal
When shopping for spirits, ask for a “mixing” mezcal rather than a “sipper.” There are plenty of options under $40. We used Mezcal Unión Uno in the cocktail class. Montelobos is another go-to for making mezcal margaritas.

Making the cocktail at home
For a home bar version of the Little Red Corvette, we extract the hibiscus flavor from store-bought hibiscus tea bags (preferably The Republic of Tea) rather than sourcing dried hibiscus flowers.

Republic of Tea hibiscus

With the concentrated tea, we then make a simple syrup and infuse it with jalapeños, as directed by the Péche bartending team.

For the seasoned salt rim garnish, Tajín Clásico Seasoning does the trick beautifully and is easy to find in the Hispanic section of the grocery store or order on Amazon.

Tajín is a chili lime seasoning blend ideal for Bloody Marys—and also amazing sprinkled over popcorn!

 

How to make the Little Red Corvette:

Pêche is located at 800 Magazine Street in New Orleans.

See the Milk Punch Media ode to one of our favorites in “Play Again, Pêche: A Parade of Seafood with a Magical Drum.”