Mexican beer meets lemon, ice and salt in the michelada: step by step

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Daniel Wheeler

GastroNomad in Mexico

Photo Gallery: Mexican beer meets lemon, ice and salt in the michelada

One of young Mexico’s favorite drinks, the michelada makes sense in all ways. Let’s face it — you think of the ingredients and you know Mexico’s got it right. A fresh and clear Mexican lager is always a must in this classic beverage. Mix it up with some lime juice and rough sea salt and you’ve got a winner. With the first sip, you’ll feel its refreshing, sparkling synergy in your mouth.

Clearly, no one knows the exact origin of this emblematic drink, but people think it comes from the city of Monterrey or of San Luis Potosi. And even the name is uncertain. There are references to chilled beer and “mi chela helada” (my cold beer) and even a mention of Michel Esper to be the creator.

The truth, is no one cares where it comes from the moment you start drinking this delight.

It is well known that after a long party night in Mexico’s fantastic weather, you may not be your best the next morning. So give a michelada a try. The lime juice drives the alcohol in the beer almost out of perception, and will pick you up in no time to get going with your daytime vacationing activities.

Micheladas have evolved from their three main ingredients — beer, lime juice and salt — to all kinds of flavors, versions and names. I have tried recipes that destroy the thirst-quenching harmony of this beverage by adding pineapple juice, or dried, powder chili-covered mango. And other times I’ve tried exquisite marvels that enhance this typical Mexican drink, for example by adding Clamato or tomato juice.

My favorite recipe is stolen from a venue named “Miche Rockers” that sells my favorite micheladas to an invigorating background of rock music. This recipe adds a mix called “chirimico,” which consists of freshly squeezed lime juice, salt, Tabasco sauce, Worcestershire sauce, and “Jugo Maggi” — basically, an unsalted soy sauce sold all over Mexico. Add this to a Mexican lager, and it’s is the best drink for the hot Mexican summer.

Ice is another concern. Some like it in their micheladas and others just don’t care for it.

Corona is the best-selling Mexican beer in the world and my personal michelada favorite.

Chirimico

This makes more than you need for a single michelada.

  • 1 ml Tabasco sauce
  • 3 ml Jugo Maggi (unsalted soy sauce)
  • 9 ml worcestershire sauce

Michelada

  • ¼ oz chirimico
  • ¾ oz lime juice
  • Salt and Tajin (powdered piquin chile) to taste
  • Ice if desired
  • A Mexican lager beer

Rub a cut lime on the rim of the glass, then dip it in a mixture of salt and chili powder. Add ice, if desired, then the chirimico. Slowly pour in the beer.

¡Salud!

Published or Updated on: June 3, 2011 by Daniel Wheeler © 2011
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