Sparkling Mezcal Water

Citrus juice, mezcal, sparkling water, and a dash of bitters come together in this simple and refreshing cocktail.

Sparkling Mezcal Water

Eva Kolenko / Food Styling by Carrie Purcell / Prop Styling by Nidia Cueva

Total Time:
10 mins
6 servings

Easily doubled for a party, this cocktail is a refreshing blend of citrus juice, mezcal, and bubbly sparkling water. Key lime juice and Meyer lemon juice bring a tart and floral flair to the otherwise simple cocktail. Meyer lemons add delicate tanginess, in comparison to regular lemons, while still providing ample acidity to balance the sweetness of the simple syrup and sharpness of the alcohol. For the best flavor, Lopez recommends single-origin espadín mezcal. It's made from espadín agave (the most common variety used in mezcal production) and has a lightly smoky taste and clean finish.

Any agave-based spirit is considered mezcal, so tequila falls into this category, but tequila must be made from blue agave, whereas mezcal can be made from many types of agave. Espadín agave is particularly well suited for mezcal production for several reasons. It has a higher sugar content compared to other agave varieties and reaches full maturity, meaning it can be harvested, in 8 years compared to 13 to 15 years for some other types. Espadín agave also grows well in most environments and adapts to various altitudes and terrains, making it abundant across Mexico.

After harvesting, the agave juice is fermented and then distilled twice before aging and bottling. Similar to the tequila-based cocktail popular in Texas, ranch water, this bubbly drink leans on fresh citrus and sparkling water. Squeeze the lemon and Key lime juice in advance for a quick stir-together big-batch cocktail once guests arrive. Finish each cocktail with a dash of orange bitters for an extra burst of citrusy flavor with an undertone of spice, such as cardamom, anise, and caraway. The warmth of the spice adds a touch of depth to the otherwise bright, refreshing, and clean summery drink.


  • 3/4 cup (6 ounces) single-origin espadín mezcal (such as Lopez Real)

  • 3/4 cup fresh lemon juice (from 4 lemons) (preferably Meyer lemons) 

  • 1/3 cup simple syrup

  • 2 tablespoons fresh Key lime juice (from 4 Key limes) 

  • 1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt

  • 3 cups sparkling water

  • 1 cup large ice cubes, plus more or glasses

  • Orange bitters


  1. Stir together espadín mezcal, lemon juice, simple syrup, Key lime juice, and fine sea salt in a large pitcher. Stir in sparkling water and ice cubes. Pour mixture evenly into 6 ice-filled glasses; top each with a dash of orange bitters.


This recipe is adapted from Asada: The Art of Mexican-Style Grilling by Bricia Lopez with Javier Cabral

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