Watermelon Sugar

Serving Size: 8

A spicy salad of pork belly and watermelon pickle at New York City's Fatty Crab restaurant inspired bartender Philip Ward of Mayahuel to invent a liquid riff on the dish. If you're a Margarita fan, you'll love this drink, which is made with mezcal, tequila's smoky cousin. Don't mess around with the cheap stuff; look for bottles in the Del Maguey line of mezcals, including Vida de San Luis del Rio.



  • 1 jalapeño, halved lengthwise
  • 0.75 cup tequila blanco
  • 2 cup 3/4" cubes seedles watermelon
  • 6 Tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 6 Tbsp simple syrup
  • 0.25 cup mezcal or gold tequila


  1. Scrape stems, seeds, and veins from jalapeño into a small jar (reserve green flesh for another use). Add tequila; cover and let infuse for 15 minutes. Set a strainer over a small bowl. Pour tequila through strainer and discard solids.
  2. Place watermelon cubes in a large pitcher. Using a muddler or potato masher, coarsely crush watermelon. Stir in lime juice, Simple Syrup, mezcal, and jalapeño tequila. Stir in 2 cups ice. Cover and refrigerate until chilled, about 2 hours.
  3. Fill Old Fashioned glasses with ice. Divide cocktail among glasses and serve.

Image Credit: Ashley Rodriguez
Recipe courtesy of:  Philip Ward, Mayahuel, New York, New York