So Long Pickleback, The Verdita Is The Best Shot Combo Around

If straight up shots aren't your thing, that's fair, but entering the world of shot combos is a whole new avenue to explore. Some may hear "shot combo" and be transported back to ill-fated party nights, swigging flat soda after a sip of warm Captain Morgan. But the ritual can be far more elevated, tasty, and fun. The infamous pickleback may be one combo that comes to mind first, as it has definitely made a name for itself around the trendy, not-so-divey bar scene. But whiskey isn't the only spirit that goes down easier with a little something on the side. 

The Verdita is one of Mexico's signature shot backs that won't remind anyone of chasing bad alcohol down with sugary and stale drinks. It's sweet, spicy, and rich with flavor that not only smooths out the tequila but complements its distinct smoky agave flavor.

The Verdita may only be two sips, but it has all the characteristics a mixologist would respect. It's a refreshing blend of cilantro, mint, jalapeños, and pineapple juice that's tossed back after a shot of tequila. The spicy sweet fusion pulls all the right notes from tequila and leaves the burn behind. Translating to "little green," the crisp and herbaceous concoction screams summer. Maybe it's the celebratory association, but shots will always uproar a crowd, and the Verdita doesn't disappoint. I would never disparage a salty lime, but this tequila companion simply can't be beat. The second the complex flavors of the Verdita hit my lips, I knew there was no turning back.

The Verdita is tasty and versatile, and rooted in sustainability

Like every other bar stool patron, I have my go-to orders, but I often let curiosity take the wheel whenever I see an interesting concoction. And I'll admit, I'm beyond team tequila, I'm coach tequila. I love the complexities and the lingering tickle it leaves on your tongue. On a perfectly warm day, I'd typically go for a blanco tequila on the rocks with some lime and a splash of soda water. That was until I had the Verdita. I first tried the spicy green juice at Bed Stuy's Do or Dive and was smitten. And while tequila's unique characteristics typically make it a love-it-or-hate-it type of spirit, if anything could pull someone back to team tequila, it would be this little green elixir.

The mini cocktail couldn't be easier to toss together, and not just because of the everyday ingredients. Most recipes I've come across have varied slightly, whether it's an extra sprig of mint or shunning cilantro. The adaptability of the recipe is just another reminder that the Verdita is the best tequila chaser avenue to explore. And its versatility seems to be rooted back in its fascinating history. Born in the streets of Mexico, the Verdita was allegedly first produced from excess juices that would otherwise be wasted. Innovative vendors would make use of juice dribbles here and there, leftover from fruit salads, dressings, drinks, you name it, and serve it up alongside a swig of tequila. And If all of these flavors call to you but you're not a drinker, you don't have to miss out on the fun. The Verdita is an incredible drink on its own, and the measurements can be manipulated to make it a little more easy-drinking, or spicier if you want that kick.

Nothing compares to the Verdita, but some remedies come close

The Verdita may be the best in my opinion, but it isn't tequila's only ally. The Mexican beverage has a sister shot, the Sangrita, which caters to tequila in a similar manner, masking any bitter taste with a punch to the tongue. The puree consists of tomatoes, peppers, and orange juice and it's perfect for those that want to squash any residual notes of tequila. 

In contrast to the Verdita's vivid green hue, the Sangrita bares a bright red shade, the last color needed to represent the Mexican flag. The trio of sippers – tequila, Verdita, and Sangrita – can often be found as a package deal, lining up to celebrate the heritage of Mexico. Typically, Sangrita is shot first, followed by tequila, and then Verdita. An explosion of sensations takes over when consumed together, but if you can only choose one, Verdita is the one you cannot miss.