There are numerous variations of this beverage throughout Mexico and Latin America. Some include clam juice, which gives it a layer of briny savouriness.
*Pronounced Mish-shell-ada according to Dr Google, but not according to Ilaria!
Crushed flaky sea salt
Ground toasted cumin
Hot smoked paprika
Unseasoned tomato juice
Spicy sauce like Cully’s Mango & Coconut
Chilled pale ale, or beer of your choice
A Michelada is an amazingly refreshing drink hailing from Mexico. Beer and lime, usually with tomato juice and hot chilli sauce in a spiced salt-rimmed glass. Yeah! The trick is in striking the right balance of flavours – you want some punch, and for it not to be too hoppy, and for the lime to come through to keep things fresh. You could liken it to a Bloody Mary, a hangover cure, but it is fab on a really hot day, no hangover required! And it suits Mexican inspired dishes, big bowls of guacamole, tacos and the like.
Use a fairly bland unseasoned tomato juice like Keri Tomato Juice. Make the Michelada in a large tumbler.
1 Mix a little crushed flaky sea salt, a pinch of ground toasted cumin and either a pinch of chilli powder, or a little smoked paprika together on a saucer. Rub the rim of the glass with a juicy lime wedge then dip into the spiced salt.
2 Half fill the glass with ice then pour in tomato juice to come just under halfway up the glass.
3 Add a good squeeze of lime (1½-2 Tbsp) and a dash each of a spicy sauce of your choice. I use 1 teaspoon of Culley’s Mango & Coconut. Add a pinch or two of crushed flaky sea salt and a pinch each of smoked paprika and ground cumin. You can add a dash of Worcestershie sauce for added savouriness if you like. Stir well.
4 Pour in chilled pale ale and serve. Top with a little more beer as you drink.
Beers to go in a Michelada
Traditionally a Corona or similar beer is the popular choice. But you can play around. If the beer is too light and wimpy it’ll get smashed by the lime and spices. Step it up I reckon and enjoy a long, cool refreshing drink with a nice little hot spike that pops up every so often as a surprise. Here are a few beers we tried in a Michelada.
Pilsner Lager Boundary Road
I really liked this one, very refreshing, excellent for people who are not huge beer fans. The chilli cuts the hops back and it really changes things.
Birkenhead Brewing Company Pale Ale
Doesn’t have complex malt, but has tropical hops. Good with food for dinner.
Woodrose American IPA
This was my fave. It’s not a hop forward beer, but has a gutsier, maltier body, and is sweeter. And it changes when mixed with the tomato mixture.
Sawmill Pale Ale
Hoppy but nice and clean with citrus notes that matched the lime in the Michelada. Pleasant summer drinking.