El Chupacabra cocktail from Jackson's Steakhouse. / Bruce Graner/GoPensacola.com
I am writing you today to warn you that a chupacabra had been sighted here in Pensacola. This is the first time in history that one has been seen in our neck of the woods, and I’m proud to say that I am the one who laid eyes on it. I must admit that it was very scary to be in such close proximity to one, but after spending a little time with it, I began to relax and enjoy its company (although my mouth developed a mild burning sensation).
For those of you not familiar with the chupacabra, it is a legendary creature rumored to inhabit Puerto Rico, Mexico and parts of the United States. The name chupacabra means “goat sucker,” and derives from its tendency to stalk and feed on livestock. It is described as a reptile-like being, appearing to have a leathery or scaly greenish-gray skin with sharp spines or quills running down its back. It stands about 3 to 4 feet high, and stands and hops like a kangaroo. It is said to have a dog-like face, a forked tongue and large fangs. It hisses and screeches when alarmed, and leaves behind a sulfuric stench. When it screeches, some reports assert that the chupacabra’s eyes glow an unusual red, which nauseates the witness.
With a creature such as this, you can understand why one would be a little uneasy in its presence. But this isn’t the chupacabra I’m talking about. The one I’m referring to is a cocktail.
The description of the cocktail is much more attractive than the creature. A key ingredient, Cedilla Acai Berry liqueur, gives the cocktail a beautiful purple hue. The addition of anejo tequila and mescal give it a kick with a pleasant, unexpected hint of smokiness. Throw in a sliver of habanero pepper, and you’ve created your very own chupacabra that will be your amigo, sit right by your side and keep you company for hours.
Cocktail salt, to rim a glass
1¾ ounces añejo tequila
¼ ounce mescal
¾ ounce Cedilla Acai Berry liqueur
¼ ounce fresh-squeezed lime juice
½ ounce agave syrup
Small sliver of habanero pepper (or a large sliver if you’re brave)
Lime wedge, for garnish
Salt the rim of a tall cocktail glass. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice, pour in all remaining ingredients and give it a few shakes. Pour into cocktail glass and garnish with a lime wedge.
Jackson's Steakhouse, 400 S. Palafox St. 469-9898, or visit jacksons.goodgrits.com.