Looking for a new cocktail to try out this weekend? Want to wind down with a fresh new drink? We’ve got you covered. Here’s what you should drink this weekend.

I was asked to play guest bartender this week at a friend’s birthday party this week and of course I had to settle on a signature drink for the occasion. My friend specifically asked for a tequila cocktail and considering her love for all things Italy I decided the Padua Paloma was the way to go.

On its own, a Paloma is a deliciously refreshing mixed drink. Add in some Aperol, and you’re really getting the party started. It’s simple to make, an easy crowd-pleaser, and has a great balance of flavor. Plus, you can get creative and opt for different Aperitivi, maybe swap in some Mezcal, or use fresh grapefruit juice and seltzer instead of soda water.

While the cocktail world is poised to transition to cold-weather cocktails for the fall season, we’re still clinging to the last few warm days of summer with the vibrant and beautiful Padua Paloma.

Padua Paloma Ingredients

Tequila – The original Paloma recipe calls for blanco tequila, so we’d recommend the same here. JAJA Blanco Tequila, Patrón Silver, and Milagro Silver are among our favorite options. I also really enjoyed the touch of smoke when swapping in Madre Mezcal, too.

Aperol – Aperol’s sweetness is a nice counterbalance to the bracing bitterness of grapefruit. And, if you opt to use mezcal, then Aperol works very well. So, Aperol is the first choice here. But, you can certainly experiment with alternatives like Cappelletti, Select Aperitivo, and others.

Grapefruit Soda – Many Paloma cocktails are made with grapefruit soda like Squirt or Jarritos. With the added sweetness of Aperol, many bartenders would recommend opting for grapefruit juice and seltzer water. I used Sparkling Ice, a grapefruit sparkling water, in my version and it worked just fine so feel free to experiment until you find a combination you like.

Lime Juice – As always, opt for freshly squeezed lime juice in this cocktail.

Padua Paloma Recipe

  • Combine 1.5 ounces of tequila, .75 ounces of Aperol, and .5 ounces of lime juice in a collins glass over ice.
  • Top off with grapefruit soda and stir gently.
  • Garnish with a grapefruit wedge and some black salt on the rim.
  • Enjoy!
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