The Best Cocktail Bars in Mexico City

The bars in Mexico City are helmed by some of the worlds leading mixologists
The bars in Mexico City are helmed by some of the world's leading mixologists | © Cavan Images / Alamy
Sam Murray

Copy Desk and Production Manager

There’s an effervescent cocktail scene in Mexico City, helped enormously be an ever-growing lust for tequila and mezcal. That’s supported and driven by some of the top mixologists in the world, who throw together a Willy Wonka-esque offering of tempting alcoholic concoctions, and often for far less money than you’ll find in other capitals. When you’re in town, check out this selection of the top cocktail bars in Mexico City.

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1. Licorería Limantour

Bar, Cocktail Bar, Mexican, Cocktails, Wine, Beer

When Licorería Limantour opened in April 2011, it changed the face of the cocktail scene in Mexico, which was barely taking off. The concept is simple, designer cocktails fashioned with all sorts of dynamic ingredients: fresh herbs, flowers, fruits, syrups, shrubs, spices, and rare foreign spirits. Take a seat in the downstairs bar and order a margarita al pastor, a punchy take on the classic marg with flavors inspired by tacos al pastor, a seen-everywhere street eat with pineapple and cilantro.

2. Fifty Mils

Bar, Contemporary

Fifty Mils takes the hotel bar concept and flips it upside down – this ain’t the place to slurp one last pint before bed, more an upscale date venue. It’s powered by a collection of award-winning local mixologists and super-charged by invited star bartenders from across the planet. Take a spot at the long marble bar or, better yet, find a secret hideaway among the greenery in the courtyard. Bring with you a Bugs Bunny – a Tanqueray Nº Ten gin drink with carrot juice, lemongrass syrup, lime juice, tres chiles bitter and perfumed with fernet.

3. Maison Artemisia

Bar, Beer, Contemporary

The best of Mexico and France combine magnificently at Maison Artemisia, an intimate bar with a well-deserved rep as one of the best in the city. It does a mean trade in absinthe – a rarity in the land of tequila and mezcal – and even has its own label, Absinthe Maison Artemisia. The menu is short, sweet and ever-changing, and there’s an equally varied line-up of musicians to keep the good vibes flowing.

4. Hanky-Panky

Bar, Contemporary

It’s in the Juarez neighborhood, but that’s all that can be said about the location of Hanky-Panky – this is, after all, the leading speakeasy in Mexico City. There’s a secret entrance, of course, but behind the theater is simply a brilliant cocktail bar. Button-back seating forms intimate booths or you could prop up the bar and listen to the mixologists wax lyrical about their creations.

5. Handshake Speakeasy

Cocktail Bar, Cocktails

Sophisticated and secret, Handshake Speakeasy has date night written all over it. Plonk yourself at the gorgeous marble bar and peruse the hella creative cocktail menu. This is a place to get out of your comfort zone – your drink might include burned butter, cherry tomato, or, perhaps, a mushroom. It’s exactly what you want from one of the best speakeasys in Mexico City – incredible drinks, great atmosphere and a surprise or two.

6. Baltra Bar

Bar, Mexican

It’s definitely hip – how could it not be with an address in ultra-cool Condesa? – but Baltra Bar has a tranquillo vibe lesser seen in the trendy cocktail bars of Mexico City. That’s largely thanks to the aesthetic – the decor is a quirky mix of nature-inspired paintings and taxidermy, all inspired by Charles Darwin (Baltra is one of the Galapagos islands). Don’t let that relaxed vibe fool you, the cocktails are still cutting-edge.

7. Xaman Bar

Cocktail Bar, Ukranian

The miracles of nature come to the fore at Xaman Bar, a trendy coctelería inspired by pre-Hispanic shamanism. It’s a stylish, sophisticated space with decorative nods to the natural world. The feel-good factor here, though, is definitely found on the cocktail menu, where medicinal herbs and plants are utilized in a forward-thinking, experimental offering bound to make you smile.

This is an updated version of the original article by Shreyas Kulkani.

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