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The Perfect Paloma Drink Recipe

The Perfect Paloma Drink Recipe

Krista S

We have asked a fictional version of retired Semi-Pro baseball player and bartender extraordinaire Sam Malone from Boston to tell us about one of his favorite drinks in the world.  Here is what he had to say:

Well, hello there, folks! Sam Malone here, your favorite bartender from Cheers. Today, I’m going to walk you through the magic of the Paloma, one of Mexico’s most beloved cocktails. As the sun dances on the horizon, there’s no better companion than this refreshing libation.

Why Is a Paloma Called a Paloma?

Now, isn’t that a great question? The Paloma – Spanish for “dove” – it’s a name that sings, just like the drink. Nobody’s entirely sure why it’s called that, but when you taste the smooth mix of tequila, grapefruit, and lime, it feels like peace is settling on your palate. That’s a poetic way to start, isn’t it?

What is a Paloma Made Of?

You don’t need a lot of fancy ingredients to whip up a Paloma. Simplicity is the beauty of this drink. It’s the symphony of tequila, fresh lime juice, grapefruit soda, and a pinch of salt, that does the trick. You’re looking for that sweet-sour, sparkling rush with a tequila backbone. Now let’s talk about that tequila.

What Tequila is Best for Palomas?

Now we’re getting into the meat of things. The tequila you pick can make or break your Paloma. My advice? Always go for a high-quality 100% agave tequila. Now, whether you prefer blanco or reposado is a personal preference.

Blanco or Reposado: What is the Difference?

Blanco, or white tequila, is pure, unaged, and fresh from the still. It brings a raw, fiery spirit to your Paloma. On the other hand, reposado is aged in oak barrels from two months up to a year, mellowing the fire and adding a hint of vanilla and spice. My personal favorite for a Paloma is a good blanco – it keeps things crisp, and clean and lets that grapefruit shine. But don’t let me stop you from experimenting with a reposado if you’re feeling adventurous.

The Perfect Paloma Drink Recipe

Are Palomas Healthy?

Well, now, as a bartender, I’m no doctor, but I can tell you this: compared to many cocktails, the Paloma is relatively low in calories, thanks to the fresh fruit juice and absence of added sugars. But remember, moderation is key in everything.

What Meal Pairs the Best With a Paloma?

Certainly! Let me take a shot at this, shall I?

Now, the Paloma, with its zesty punch and tequila backbone, pairs beautifully with a wide variety of dishes. First on my list is always Mexican cuisine – it’s the home of the Paloma, after all. Tacos, enchiladas, or ceviche, you name it, the Paloma stands up to the spices and complements the flavors perfectly.

If you’re up for seafood, a well-prepared shrimp cocktail or grilled fish makes for a delightful companion to this citrusy drink. The Paloma’s acidity cuts through the richness of seafood, creating a balance that your taste buds will thank you for.

Or if you’re planning a barbecue, a Paloma is a grand choice. The sweet, sour and slightly bitter taste of the Paloma enhances the smoky flavors of grilled meat. Whether it’s BBQ ribs or a juicy burger, this drink holds its own.

And if you’re going for pizza, choose one with a tangy, slightly spicy topping – like pepperoni or jalapenos. Trust me, it’s a match made in heaven.

The Perfect Paloma Recipe

Enough chit-chat. Let’s get down to business. To make the perfect Paloma, you’ll need a top-notch cocktail shaker and the following information:

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The Perfect Paloma Drink Recipe

The Perfect Paloma Drink Recipe

  • Author: Krista
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 serving 1x


Experience the taste of Mexican sunshine with this Perfect Paloma cocktail recipe. The refreshing blend of tequila, tangy lime, sparkling grapefruit soda, and a touch of salt creates a delightful balance that’s perfect for any occasion.


Units Scale
  • 2 ounces of blanco tequila
  • Half a lime
  • A pinch of salt
  • Grapefruit soda to top it up


  1. Fill your cocktail shaker with ice.
  2. Pour in the blanco tequila.
  3. Squeeze in the fresh lime juice.
  4. Add a pinch of salt.
  5. Give it a good shake until the outside of the shaker feels cold.
  6. Pour the mixture into a glass filled with ice cubes.
  7. Top it up with grapefruit soda, stir gently to combine.
  8. Garnish with a lime wheel or grapefruit wedge if desired. Enjoy immediately.


  • Add salt to the rim if you like extra salty flavoring.
  • Always use high-quality 100% agave tequila for the best taste.
  • Freshly squeezed lime juice makes a world of difference. Avoid bottled lime juice whenever possible.
  • Feel free to adjust the proportions of tequila, lime juice, and grapefruit soda to suit your taste.
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes

Frequently Asked Questions

Sam was asked a couple of extra questions about the Paloma.  Here they are for you to read:

1. Can I use another type of citrus if I don’t have lime?

Sure thing, champ! While lime is classic, feel free to experiment with other citrus fruits like lemon or even grapefruit itself. Each brings a unique zing to your Paloma.

2. What if I can’t find grapefruit soda?

No sweat, my friend. If grapefruit soda’s playing hard to get, you can substitute it with a combination of grapefruit juice and club soda. Just remember to add a dash of simple syrup if you prefer a sweeter cocktail.

3. Can I prepare a Paloma in batches for a party?

Absolutely! A Paloma is a crowd-pleaser, and you can definitely whip it up in a large batch. Just multiply the ingredients by the number of guests and remember to add the soda just before serving to keep it fizzy.

4. Is there a non-alcoholic version of the Paloma?

Of course, there is! You can make a virgin Paloma by simply leaving out the tequila. Substitute it with some extra club soda or even a splash of non-alcoholic spirit if you have it.

5. What glassware is best for serving a Paloma?

Traditionally, a Paloma is served in a highball glass, but if you’re in a pinch, any glass will do. The most important thing is to enjoy the drink and the company you’re sharing it with. Here’s to good times and great drinks, cheers!

The Perfect Paloma Drink Recipe

Wrap It Up Sam!

Well folks, that wraps up our journey through the sunny lands of the Paloma. I hope you’ve enjoyed this little tour as much as I’ve enjoyed guiding you. Now you’ve got the inside scoop on one of Mexico’s favorite libations.

Remember, making a great cocktail is about more than just following a recipe – it’s about the spirit of enjoyment, sharing good times, and always staying curious. Don’t be afraid to experiment with the Paloma, maybe even come up with your own signature twist.Paloma

And lastly, no matter how delicious these Palomas are, always remember to drink responsibly. The best part of any drink is the good times and laughter it’s shared with.

So, raise a glass to good company, friends. I hope to see you at the bar soon. In the spirit of Cheers – where everybody knows your name – this is Sam Malone, signing off. Cheers

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