It’s tempting to call the Rodriguez Sour a variation on the Margarita. After all, it has tequila, lime and sugar syrup. But while it wouldn’t be misguided to do so, the syrup, instead of triple sec, makes this drink more akin to a variation on a Tequila Sour.
Whatever the case, the Rodriguez Sour is a sweet and sour cocktail with a fiery kick of jalapeno. The drink comes from bartending veteran Kevin Diedrich, from San Francisco bar Pacific Cocktail Haven. Besides the spice from the jalapeno syrup and the sweet tart flavors of pineapple, the drink features additional complexity and a pale green hue from the inclusion of green Chartreuse. This French herbal liqueur boasts a storied history and its recipe is proprietary, reportedly known only by a handful of monks. Secret recipe aside, the liqueur pairs beautifully with a number of spirits, lending its aromatic botanicals to drinks like the Last Word and the Tipperary. Tequila, in general, pairs well with the liqueur, accentuating its vegetal, grassy notes.
The jalapeno simple syrup is what brings the heat to the party. To dial back the spice levels, it’s a good idea to seed the pepper before simmering it in the syrup. But for those who love their drinks with a good deal of heat, using the whole pepper will create a rather spicy cocktail. The recipe makes around a cup of the syrup, which can then be used to spice up drinks like a Margarita, Tom Collins or even something more unorthodox like a Rum Old Fashioned.
- 2 ounces blanco tequila
- 1/2 ounce green Chartreuse
- 1 ounce pineapple juice
- 1/2 ounce lime juice, freshly squeezed
- 1/2 ounce jalapeno syrup*
- Garnish: jalapeno slice
Add the blanco tequila, green Chartreuse, pineapple juice, jalapeno syrup and lime juice into a shaker with ice and shake until well-chilled.
Double-strain into a rocks glass filled with fresh ice.
Garnish with a long slice of jalapeno.
*Jalapeno syrup: Add 1 cup of water and 1 cup of sugar to a saucepan set over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring, until the sugar dissolves. Add 4 jalapenos (optionally seeded), reduce the heat to low and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and pour the mixture into a blender. Puree until smooth then fine-strain into a storage container. Let cool and store in the refrigerator for up to 2 to 3 weeks.