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July 23, 2021

Cheers To Summer: Puerto Vallarta’s Top Raicilla and Tequila Experiences

One reason most of us love summer is the cool and refreshing cocktails that we can sip by the pool or at a trendy bar, preferably with the beach as a backdrop, and what better place to enjoy summer like this than Puerto Vallarta. We want to share with you two signature drinks with two spirits from the region: Tequila, which we’re sure you already know, and Raicilla, perfect for these summer evenings, whilst you admire the sun setting on the horizon.

We visited mixologist Miguel at Restaurant Mar & Vino in Old Town Puerto Vallarta, aka Olas Altas, and he showed us how to prepare these two cocktails that he created, inspired by the culture and the surrounding nature, and that we’d like to share with you! Bur first, let’s dig into a little bit of history of these two strong and flavorful Mexican spirits from Jalisco. 

Tequila, a distillate from the region of the same name, in the state of Jalisco, just like Puerto Vallarta, is one of the most popular Mexican spirits all around the world. 

It is made from the harvested core of the agave plant, particularly the Blue Agave. It was first produced in the 18th Century, after the Spaniards had arrived in Mexico and started distilling the plant, which the natives already drank from. 

In 1974, the town of Tequila was given the denomination of origin to be the only place where Tequila was produced. Depending on their aging, there are 5 types of Tequila: Silver, Joven, Reposado, Añejo and Extra Añejo, which is aged for at least 3 years. In Puerto Vallarta you can find many Tequila tours and shops, in which you can sample and take back home your favorite one to share with friends. 

Raicilla, on the other hand, is not as known and popular as Tequila (yet!) It is made from harvested cores if the agave plant as well, and has been produced for more than 300 years, but in its case two main particular types of agave are used: Agave Lechuguilla and Agave Maximiliana. It is worth mentioning that there are over 200 species of agave plants in Mexico. Its distillation is different from Tequila. 

In 2019, Raicilla was the latest denomination of origin that the state of Jalisco received, making it the local spirit of Puerto Vallarta and surrounding areas, with producers also in nearby towns such as Mascota, San Sebastian del Oeste, and Talpa de Allende, among others. There are also different types of Raicilla depending on their aging and artisanal procedure. When in Puerto Vallarta, you can also find Raicilla Tours and Tastings to pick your favorite to take back home. 

Enough history! Let’s get to the fun part of preparing these unique and outstanding drinks for summer.

Agua Santa (Holy Water)

This is a subtle, floral, aromatic, tropical, yet elegant drink made with Tequila. One of the Miguel’s most popular cocktails served at Mar & Vino.


  • Silver Tequila 1.5oz (45ml)
  • Rosemary infusion 1oz (30ml)
  • Mango juice (natural or from concentrate) 1.7oz (50ml)
  • Lavender syrup ½oz (15ml)
  • Ice cubes
  • Dill and rosemary herbs
  • Small tropical flower


  1. Fill your favorite cocktail glass with ice cubes. 
  2. Fill the shaker with the ice cubes. 
  3. Add all the ingredients to the shaker (rosemary infusion, mango juice, lavender syrup, and tequila. 
  4. Shake well. 
  5. Serve in cocktail glass. 
  6. Garnish with dill and rosemary herbs, and a tropical flower if available. 
  7. Enjoy!

Agua Santa Drink


Isla Verde (Green Island)

The inspiration to creating this cocktail was using Raicilla, the native spirit, to harmonize with strong flavors such as cinnamon, adding kiwifruit and green grapes for freshness and exoticness. The result is a unique beverage with natural, organic flavors. 


  • Raicilla 1.5oz (45ml)
  • Kiwifruit 3-5 slices
  • Green grapes 2-4 pcs
  • Fresh spearmint 2-3 leaves
  • Cinnamon infusion 1oz (30ml)
  • Lime juice ½oz (15ml)
  • Natural, organic simple syrup 1/3oz (10ml)
  • Ice cubes


  1. Fill ½ of your favorite cocktail glass with ice cubes.
  2. Add 1-2 thin slices of kiwi to glass.
  3. Place 2-3 slices of kiwi, grapes, and spearmint in shaker and mash vigorously.
  4. Fill shaker with ice. 
  5.  Add the Raicilla, cinnamon infusion, lime and syrup.
  6. Shake well.
  7. Strain and serve.

Isla Verde Drink

So, during your summer visit to Puerto Vallarta, make sure you enjoy these drinks. And if you cannot wait any longer, prepare them at home!

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