Hot Lips

This post contains affiliate links. See our disclosure policy here.

Get Our Recipes Sent To Your Inbox
Thanks! Keep an eye on your inbox for updates.

Cocktail History

The Hot Lips is a modern cocktail that was created in 2009 by Jessica Gonzalez at Death & Company in New York City, New York. Although the recipe includes citrus, it uniquely stirs instead of shakes it along with the other ingredients, including spicy jalapeño tequila, mezcal, pineapple, vanilla syrup, and cane syrup to create a cocktail that feels like a Margarita.

Cocktail Ingredients

To make this cocktail, you’ll need the following ingredients:

Jalapeño Tequila: This is a spirit made with jalapeño peppers, unaged agave, and water. We used Dulce Vida Spirits Organic Tequila Blanco infused with jalapeño peppers. For a mocktail version of this drink, try Lyre’s Non-Alcoholic Agave Blanco Spirit infused with jalapeño pepper in place of the tequila.

Mezcal: This is a spirit made in Mexico with agave, sugar, and alcohol that is aged in an underground pit lined with wood. We used Del Maguey Vida Mezcal because it has a palatable mezcal flavor with notes of ginger, cinnamon, and tangerine. For a mocktail version of this drink, try MONDAY Zero Alcohol Mezcal in place of the mezcal.

Pineapple Juice: This is the liquid juice of a pineapple. We used fresh pineapple juice.

Lime Juice: This is the liquid juice of a lime. We used freshly squeezed lime juice.

Vanilla Syrup: This is a sweetener made with vanilla pods, sugar, and water. We also made this syrup using Alex’s recipe.

Cane Syrup: This is a sweetener made with white cane sugar and water. We made ours at home using Alex’s recipe.

Salt: This is a mineral. We used Maldon Sea Salt Flakes.

Lime Slice: This is a slice of lime that has been cut into a half wheel shape.

Bartending Tools

To make this cocktail, you’ll need the following bar tools:

Jigger: This is used to measure and pour ingredients. We used the Japanese jigger from the A Bar Above 14-Piece Silver Bar Set.

Mixing Glass: This is used to hold the ingredients while they’re being stirred. We used the Viski 17 oz Cocktail Mixing Glass.

Bar Spoon: This is used to stir ingredients. We used the Barfly Stainless Steel Teardrop Bar Spoon.

Julep Strainer: This is used to strain out ice and solid ingredients after the cocktail is stirred. We used the A Bar Above Julep Strainer.

Chef’s Knife: This is used to cut larger fruits and vegetables into slices for the garnish. We used the OXO Good Grips 8-Inch Chef’s Knife.

Pineapple Corer: This is used to remove the core of the pineapple before it’s juiced. We used the OXO Good Grips Stainless Steel Pineapple Corer.

Paring Knife: This is used to cut ingredients. We used the OXO Good Grips 3.5 Inch Paring Knife.

Juicer: This is used to juice citrus, fruits, and vegetables. We used the ALEEHAI Manual Fruit Juicer for the citrus and the Hamilton Beach Large Juicer for the pineapple.

Tasting Notes

The Hot Lips starts with light aromas of pineapple and mezcal, has a salt-tamed taste with pineapple front and center backed by the mezcal’s smokiness and a tingling spiciness, and ends with a lingering earthy mezcal finish accompanied by vanilla.

Our Opinion of This Cocktail Recipe: We both really enjoyed this drink and its combination of different flavors. While a classic spicy Margarita might be a little easier to handle for many palates, the complexity offered by the Hot Lips definitely makes it worth a try.

Which of our palates is yours most like?
Find out if your palate is most similar to Alex’s or Kendall’s by answering five questions.

Take Our Quiz →

Which of our palates is yours most like?
Find out if your palate is most similar to Alex’s or Kendall’s by answering five questions.

Take Our Quiz →

Alex’s Take: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
“This cocktail seems to be a sort of lovechild of a spicy Margarita and a tiki drink, and in my mind, it succeeded at being both. The jalapeño tequila pulled a lot of weight, giving the drink’s name its rightful place; meanwhile, the mezcal offered a touch of smokiness on the back of the rest of the flavors. Finally, pineapple is showcased to give the recipe a sweet, tropical feel, but the finish is complex and inviting of another sip. It was all quite good.”

Kendall’s Take: ⭐⭐⭐
“This recipe reminded me a lot of our Smoky Pineapple Margarita from last summer, just with a spicy pepper twist. Admittedly, our jalapeño tequila was a bit too strong so it overpowered the other ingredients quite a bit, but that aside, this is a delicious drink. The vanilla was an interesting addition that did add some sweetness and a unique aftertaste I wasn’t expecting. This one’s worth a try, I’d say! I just liked our mezcal Margarita more.”

Recipe

This cocktail recipe was adapted from Mezcal + Tequila Cocktails: Mixed Drinks for the Golden Age of Agave by Robert Simonson.

Sale
Mezcal and Tequila Cocktails: Mixed Drinks for the Golden Age of Agave [A Cocktail Recipe Book]
Mezcal and Tequila Cocktails: Mixed Drinks for the Golden Age of Agave [A Cocktail Recipe Book]
Hardcover Book; Simonson, Robert (Author); English (Publication Language); 176 Pages – 04/06/2021 (Publication Date) – Ten Speed Press (Publisher)
$13.26 Amazon Prime

AuthorMezcal + Tequila Cocktails

Yields1 ServingPrep Time5 mins

Ingredients
 ¾ oz Jalapeño Tequila
 ¾ oz Mezcal
 ½ oz Pineapple Juice
 ½ oz Lemon Juice
 ½ oz Vanilla Syrup
 1 tsp Cane Syrup
 2 tsp Salt
 1 Lime Slice

Method
1

Pour salt onto a plate, rub outer rim of a lowball glass with lime slice, and roll glass in salt until coated.

2

Add tequila, mezcal, pineapple juice, lime juice, vanilla syrup, cane syrup, and cubed ice to a mixing glass.

3

Stir for 30-45 seconds.

4

Strain into salt-rimmed lowball glass.

Ingredients

Ingredients
 ¾ oz Jalapeño Tequila
 ¾ oz Mezcal
 ½ oz Pineapple Juice
 ½ oz Lemon Juice
 ½ oz Vanilla Syrup
 1 tsp Cane Syrup
 2 tsp Salt
 1 Lime Slice

Directions

Method
1

Pour salt onto a plate, rub outer rim of a lowball glass with lime slice, and roll glass in salt until coated.

2

Add tequila, mezcal, pineapple juice, lime juice, vanilla syrup, cane syrup, and cubed ice to a mixing glass.

3

Stir for 30-45 seconds.

4

Strain into salt-rimmed lowball glass.

Hot Lips

Make It a Mocktail: Use Lyre’s Non-Alcoholic Agave Blanco Spirit infused with jalapeño pepper in place of the tequila and  MONDAY Zero Alcohol Mezcal in place of the mezcal to try a booze-free version of this drink.

Shop Glassware & Tools

Find collections of cocktail glassware and bartending tools we recommend for your home bar in our Amazon shop.

Rolf Glass Palm Tree Double Old Fashioned Glass 13 ounces – Engraved Whiskey Glasses - Lead-Free Tumbler Glass – US Made (Set of 2)
Rolf Glass Palm Tree Double Old Fashioned Glass 13 ounces – Engraved Whiskey Glasses – Lead-Free Tumbler Glass – US Made (Set of 2)
Diamond-wheel engraved adding elegance to the everyday use; This etched tumbler glass measures 4 1/8 inches H by 3 3/8 inches D
$39.55
Chesapeake Bay 68683 4 Palm Tree Whiskey or Juice Glasses 4 Inches Tall 8 Ounce Capacity
Chesapeake Bay 68683 4 Palm Tree Whiskey or Juice Glasses 4 Inches Tall 8 Ounce Capacity
4 Palm Tree Glasses; Whiskey or Juice Glass; 8 Ounce Capicity; 4 Inches Tall
Sale
OXO Good Grips 8 Inch Chef's Knife
OXO Good Grips 8 Inch Chef’s Knife
Canister automatically springs open when Toilet Brush is lifted; Sleek Canister neatly and discreetly stores Brush within easy reach
$20.74
OXO Good Grips Stainless Steel Pineapple Corer & Slicer,Silver/Black
OXO Good Grips Stainless Steel Pineapple Corer & Slicer,Silver/Black
Cores and slices whole pineapples quickly and easily; Measurement markings help prevent piercing the bottom of the shell
$22.95 Amazon Prime
Hamilton Beach Juicer Machine, Big Mouth Large 3” Feed Chute for Whole Fruits and Vegetables, Easy to Clean, Centrifugal Extractor, BPA Free, 800W Motor, Black
Hamilton Beach Juicer Machine, Big Mouth Large 3” Feed Chute for Whole Fruits and Vegetables, Easy to Clean, Centrifugal Extractor, BPA Free, 800W Motor, Black
Source: Circana, Retail Tracking Service, US Unit Sales, 12 Months Ending July 2023; Cup not included
$69.85 Amazon Prime
OXO Good Grips 3.5 Inch Pairing Knife,Black/Silver,3-1/2-Inch
OXO Good Grips 3.5 Inch Pairing Knife,Black/Silver,3-1/2-Inch
Sturdy, stainless steel blade; Soft, comfortable, non-slip handle ensures a safe grip; Hand wash with warm, soapy water and promptly dry
$9.95 Amazon Prime

More Mezcal Cocktails

If you like this mezcal-based cocktail recipe, here are a few others we’ve tried that you may enjoy:

Quick Step Cocktail Recipe

Quick Step: A mezcal cocktail made with blanc vermouth, jalapeño tequila, and crème de pêche

Spaghetti Western Cocktail Recipe

Spaghetti Western: A tequila reposado cocktail made with Amaro Nonino, mezcal, orange bitters, and a grapefruit twist

Cocoa Smoke Cocktail Recipe

Cocoa Smoke: A mezcal cocktail made with white crème de cacao, ancho chile liqueur, chocolate bitters, and an orange twist

Smoke & Ice Cocktail Recipe

Smoke & Ice: A mezcal cocktail made with pineapple-infused Campari, sweet vermouth, and dark chocolate shavings

This post contains affiliate links, meaning we make a small commission each time you purchase a product using our links. Product images sourced from Amazon Product Advertising API. Amazon affiliate links last updated on 2024-02-26.

Leave a comment