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Seven Serpents

Seven Serpents Corn Juice Cocktail / Photo by Chelsea Kyle / Prop Styling by Summer Moore / Food Styling by Jamie Kimm

Courtesy Jena Ellenwood, cocktail educator at Dear Irving and Raines Law Room, New York City

This cocktail pays tribute to the Aztec goddess of corn and sustenance, Chicomecóatl, which translates from Nahuatl to “Seven Snakes.” Note: This drink uses one full ear of corn (kernels plus cob), plus an additional two cobs, which can be saved in the freezer until you’re ready to use them.

This article originally appeared in the June/July 2022 issue of Wine Enthusiast magazine. Click here to subscribe today!

Tajín seasoning, to rim glass
1 ½ ounces mezcal (espadín), tequila (blanco or reposado) or bourbon
1 ounce fresh corn juice*
¾ ounces salted corn syrup**
½ ounce lemon juice
2 dashes Hella Smoked Chili Bitters
1 dash hot sauce (optional, for those who like a spicier drink)


Place Tajín in a shallow bowl. Moisten the outer edge of a rocks glass, then roll the glass in the Tajín to coat. Set aside.

Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake well, then pour (including ice) into the prepared glass. Top with cracked ice (crack ice cubes using the back of a large spoon or mallet).

How to make *Corn Juice

Cut kernels off one corncob and blend in blender on high, then fine strain to remove pulp. (Reserve pulp for salted corn syrup.)

Depending on the size of the ear, it should yield about 1 to 1 1⁄2 ounces of juice.

How to make **Salted Corn Syrup

In a saucepan, bring 3 corncobs, the spent corn pulp from juicing and 2 1⁄2 cups of water to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 1 hour, until the liquid is reduced by half. Remove from heat and allow to cool.

Once cooled, strain solids, stir in 1 cup of sugar and 1⁄2 teaspoon salt. Store in refrigerator.