Expand Your Palate: Drinking Like a Local in Cancun

Expand Your Palate: Drinking Like a Local in Cancun

drinking like a local

So, you’re in Cancun, having the time of your life. Let’s say you’re out at a bar, perhaps on your second (or third, or fourth) round of frozen margaritas. This is a very good choice, because you’re on vacation and frozen margaritas are delicious (and plentiful in Cancun), but perhaps you’re looking to expand your palate with something different. Something unique to the local culture. We’ve got you covered. Here are some drinks to try, and places to go, that will deepen your understanding of what Cancun has to offer.


“But there’s already tequila in this margarita.” Well, yes, but why let all that lime juice and sugar get between you and the spirit? Cancun offers ample opportunity to learn a bit more about Mexico’s signature drink. The Tequila Herradura Sensorial Museum will turn you into an expert about where tequila comes from, all of its varietals, and more. Afterwards, you can still order that margarita — but you’ll be much better at ordering the margarita of your dreams.


Think of Mezcal as tequila’s smokier, less popular sibling. Like tequila, Mezcal is made from the agave plant, the heart, or pina, of the plant to be exact. When you’re in Mexico, you should at least try some of the local Mezcal, which is usually produced in small batches. Cancun isn’t necessarily a hotbed of Mezcal production (for that, venture to Oaxaca), but you’ll see the drink at bars —especially in mezcalerias that specialize in the drink, like La Sabina Mezcaleria. You can also pick up a bottle at the duty free on your way back if you want to bring a little bit of Mexico back home with you.


Don’t let a lack of familiarity with Mexican wine prevent you from ordering local at restaurants. While Mexico isn’t synonymous with wine in the way California’s Napa Valley is, Mexico’s wine region in and around the Guadalupe Valley is very similar agriculturally and climate-wise (it’s just south of the border). Order any local wine, and you’ll find that Mexico and California have more than a border in common.


Perhaps you’ve just finished off a bottle of a delicious Guadalupe Valley Cabernet at dinner, and you’re ready for dessert, or an after-dinner drink, or coffee. All three of those things are elegantly combined in the local favorite, the Mayan Coffee. A combination of brandy, honey liquor, and coffee poured over ice cream is a must-have treat during your Cancun vacation. The liquors are even set aflame, deepening the drinks flavors and thoroughly impressing the people one table over.

So when travelling to Cancun, don’t forget to explore these amazing establishments and sample some of the savory concoctions. And also remember to enjoy your favorite “bebida” responsibly.

Food & Drink
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