Houston summers are hotter than McDonald’s coffee. One way I like to keep cool is with a spicy cocktail. The key to the perfect spicy cocktail consists of a good base liquor and a solid muddler. A spicy rimmed cocktail never hurt anyone either.
As the scorching summer temps come to an end, I’ve complied a list of Top Ten Spicy Summer Cocktails in Houston. Due to my unyielding love for spice, I have tried all of these cocktails. Some of them are HOT, so I can’t guarantee that you won’t sweat a little. But on the bright side, sweat aids in cooling the body.
In Texas, we have the luxury of picking the perfect peppers. Because jalapenos, habanero and serranos are a few of my favorites, I’ve located cocktails that use them. Due to difference in palate, those with sensitive tummies may want to consume in moderation.
Now, let’s get into the cocktails.
Carlos Danger – La Grange
My addiction to the Carlos Danger cocktail at La Grange is real. Their house infused Jalapeno & Pineapple Tequila puts this at the top of my spicy summer cocktail list. Pro-tip: Pair with he stuffed avocado for good eating!
Serrano Cilantro Peppercorn Izkali Reposado Margarita – Pistolero’s
Pistolero’s Tequila and Taco Bar not only offers a variety of spicy cocktails and margaritas, but infused tequilas as well. Here, guests have the option of turning any infusion into a margarita. An infusion is basically a tequila shot. The two cocktails of interest here are: The Serrano Cilantro Peppercorn Izkali Reposado margarita (on the rocks) and the Pepino Picante. Both are great choices to enjoy on their patio.
Sal Y Pimienta’s – “Picante Martini”
Not that these selections are listed in order or anything but Sal Y Pimienta’s “Picante Martini” should be at the top of YOUR list. This cocktail is HOT as hell. An easy 4.5 out of 5. So, if you can’t handle heat – why are you even reading this list?!) Sal Y Pimienta is also one of my go to spots for delicious Tannat Wines from Uruguay! Check them out, even if you’re not into spicy dranks.
The General Public – “Bee Sting”
The General Public kicked off their new happy hour concept and of course I was there! They have a new happy hour menu where Monday – Friday all cocktail prices reflect the hour. Sound confusing? Well It’s not.. read the picture above.
The Jalapeno – Hearsay Gastro Lounge
Hearsay Gastro Lounge is a casually chic pub on the edge of downtown, that I happen to visit most often for brunch. Hearsay’s cocktail menu boasts of both current and classic cocktails. The “Jalapeno” is fierce. One of my favorites on the list. It’s simple ingredients of vodka, lemon, sugar and jalapeno are all you need. This one is HOT!
The Blueberry Jalapeno Margarita – South Bank Seafood
South Bank Seafood, a new fast casual seafood restaurant by the Eighty Six’d hospitality group opened at 702 West Dallas is opening in the former home of The Refinery Burgers & Whiskey.South Bank’s fast casual seafood concept brings a breath of fresh ‘seafood’ to the 4th ward. The chef-driven seafood menu is fresh and cocktails delicious. The Blueberry Jalapeno Margarita packs the perfect amount of heat and sweet!
Angry Gunsel – Field & Tides
Lord knows I love Field & Tides. From Chef Travis’ succulent seafood dishes to Monique’s savvy cocktail creations. The Angry Gunsel is lovingly referred to as “one hot ass margarita” on the menu. Beverage Director, Monique has created a tequila trifecta like none other.
An infusion of habenero, red fresno and jalapeno peppers bring the heat. The addition of cucumber adds a cool and refreshing finish. Though not as spicy as I would have imagined, the house made chile used to rim the glass was an excellent addition.
Scarlet Fever – Edison Houston
Edison Houston is one of Houston’s newest gems. A swanky yet chill restaurant and bar with an incredibly delicious food program. A section of the menu is dedicated to vegetarian friendly food items. The Scarlet Fever cocktail is simple and refreshing, with muddled Jalapeno as the key element here.
Border Paloma – Rainbow Lodge
In addition to their seafood and wild game bar bites, Rainbow Lodge has a fantastic spicy paloma. I bellied up to the bar and noshed on their fried quail bites and smoked duck gumbo, while enjoying their Border Paloma.
This was one of the more unique cocktails, because one of the main ingredients is Crystal Hot Sauce! Additional ingredients like Jarritos grapefruit soda & fresh squeezed grapefruit juice create a unique spicy, sour, sweet combo.
Jalapeno Margarita – Eddie V’s
Eddie V’s spicy jalapeno margarita should be added to your happy hour list, stat. Because it’s made with Fresno Peppers you might find the heat level varies depending on the season. Pro-tip: ask the barterer to muddle your peppers vs. slicing them.
Cucumber Serrano & Mango Habanero Margaritas – Ambriza
Ambriza is a new hot spot in Vintage Park. Their bar menu offers a couple spicy margaritas. The two that top my list are the Cucumber Serrano and Mango Habanero margaritas. The heat in these cocktails is a bit more subtle. But I kindly asked our server to step up the heat!
Oaxcan Express – Sidebar (Westin Woodlands)
If you’re in the Woodlands I highly suggest you belly up to CURRENT SideBar (Westin Woodlands). This second level cocktail lounge, has great drinks & poolside patio seating! Though I tried two cocktails from Bar Manger Patrick Abalos, the Oaxcan Express was the perfect spicy summer cocktail. It’s Vida Mezcal base provides a smokey heat!
If you prefer to be behind the bar vs. in front of it here’s a delicious “Spicy Milagro Paloma,” by National Milagro Ambassador Jaime Salas.