Quality instead of quantity!

6,000 independent products

No mainstream

6.000 independent products

Which language are you speaking?

Back to all Drinking

MexiLove interview: Joanna about her beginnings, what makes a good "Mexican" and where the spicy tomato schnapps actually comes from

by Yascha Roshani
Joanna von MexiLove

Many people have come to know and love the cult of "Mexicans" at the bar counter. In recent years, many party bars could no longer avoid having a "Mexican" in their range. Joanna and Katharina brought this cult to the bottle last year. When you talk to them about their idea and philosophy, you immediately realize that their main focus is on top quality and drinking pleasure. In the interview, Joanna tells us how they got started, why they use white pepper and what else you can do with their tomato schnapps apart from drinking it straight.

You can buy MexiLove online here

Guess: How many "Mexicans" did you drink before you decided to make your own?

Do you mean in one evening or over the years? We actually did many rounds of tasting our own tomato schnapps before we launched MexiLove as a product. Of course, this also includes extensive testing at events and birthdays, both of our tomato schnapps and all kinds of other varieties. During the time when MexiLove was still more of a prototype, we collected feedback from our friends until the recipe was perfect.

And did you all think the others were so good that you said to yourselves "we have to do this too!" or did you all think they were so bad that you thought "this just has to be better"?

First of all, we love the great diversity and range of "Mexican" recipes. We believe there is hardly any other drink that triggers so many emotions in bartenders and guests alike. Of course, during our research over the years, we have come across many good homemade "Mexicans" in the bars of our beloved city. However, our main motivation was that there was still no really good, top-quality tomato schnapps in a bottle at a fair price. We were determined to change this in order to win over even more lovers of this hearty, spicy spirit.

MexiLove ist der feurig-scharfe Tomatenschnaps aus Berlin, der durch eine starke Fruchtnote heraussticht
MexiLove is the fiery, spicy tomato schnapps from Berlin that stands out with its strong fruity note

At our first meeting, you also told me about how you got started in your own kitchen. Of course, these are the best craft stories. How can we imagine your first attempts? Did you just mash tomatoes, add vodka and pepper and see how it tastes?

That always sounds more adventurous than it actually is. We actually started in our own kitchen, refined our Berlin recipe there and kept bringing it to parties everywhere. In the end, we simply ended up making too many liters every weekend and our pots were no longer big enough. We mainly experimented with the pepper varieties. Traditionally, black pepper is mainly used for 'Mexican'. However, we deliberately opted for white pepper because it particularly underlines the fruitiness of our tomato schnapps and also brings out a nice, smoky spiciness to match the tomato flavor.

Personally, I really like your high fruit content. That's what sets MexiLove apart from other "Mexicans" I drink in bars. Is that the key to a good "Mexican"? Or is it the fine vodka and the right blend of spices?

As with any other product, it is essential that the individual ingredients are perfectly coordinated and that the overall concept tastes full-bodied. For us, tomato juice is of course one of the central elements and we tried many different types of tomato juice until we found the right consistency, fruit flavor and harmony with our spice mix.

In addition to the distinct fruit, your MexiLove is also quite spicy. What is the feedback from your customers after the first year?

Consistently positive - a "Mexican" should be spicy, otherwise it's just tomato juice. We have also learned from our customers that spiciness is very subjective. We clearly want to make MexiLove accessible to a broad craft spirit community. In addition, our primary goal is to always listen to our customers carefully. That's why we will adjust the spiciness slightly in the next batch to attract even more MexiLovers. MexiLove will remain fiery, but will have an even rounder taste.

Anstatt des üblichen schwarzen Pfeffers setzt MexiLove auf weißen Pfeffer, weil dieser die Fruchtigkeit des Tomatenschnaps unterstreicht und eine rauchige Schärfe passend zum Tomatengeschmack hervorhebt
Instead of the usual black pepper, MexiLove uses white pepper because it emphasizes the fruitiness of the tomato schnapps and brings out a smoky spiciness to match the tomato flavour

The Mexican community in Berlin is quite large. Have you ever received feedback from Mexicans?

That's a really interesting question because, unfortunately, many people think that the drink "Mexikaner" really comes from Mexico. In fact, the "Mexikaner" was invented in Hamburg in the 1980s. As Berliners, we are extremely grateful to Hamburg for this! So the "Mexican shot" has nothing to do with Mexico. When we drink our tomato schnapps with Mexicans, they are actually always happy that MexiLove contains the word "love", which makes our passion for this extraordinary tomato schnapps clear.

Have you ever heard Mexicans criticize the fact that we call our spicy tomato schnapps "Mexican"? After all, a comparable drink is called Bloody Mary in English.

So far, we haven't actually received any critical words about it. To be honest, we are fully convinced that the word "Mexican" for this type of drink would also be negligible. We are deliberately taking the next step here and calling MexiLove a tomato schnapps. On the one hand, it is an ingenious description for our spirit and, on the other, it avoids any discriminatory associations. In this way, we also want to make our core values for MexiLove clear, namely tolerance, diversity and cosmopolitanism.

What is your drinking recommendation for MexiLove? I only know it at room temperature, but I recently read in a review that it should be enjoyed ice cold.

We recommend that MexiLove tastes best when served well shaken and chilled. It is important that our tomato schnapps is not ice cold. Tomatoes develop their ideal aroma at a temperature of around 10 degrees. This means that MexiLove fresh from the fridge and poured straight into the glass develops its best flavor in the mouth.

MexiLove schmeckt gut geschüttelt und frisch aus dem Kühlschrank am besten - wenn der Schnaps eiskalt ist, entfalten die Tomaten nicht ihr ideales Aroma
MexiLove tastes best when well shaken and fresh from the fridge - if the schnapps is ice cold, the tomatoes will not develop their ideal flavor

I hear from many crafters that customers often come up with completely new, fascinating drinking and mixing ideas for their drinks. Is there a particular MexiLove creation from your customers that you particularly like?

The most common question we get asked at events is: "Can you cook with it?" Then we always say that our customers should just try it out. There have already been creations with pasta and pizza and we always have a lot of fun discussing them. The mix ideas for drinks also cover a wide range, from MexiLove Tonic to MexiLove Spritz and MexiLove with beer (in the sense of a Michelada). Our hearty tomato schnapps definitely has a lot of potential for different, new mix ideas - it's worth trying out!

Fancy a bottle of fiery, spicy tomato schnapps to enjoy on its own, for cocktails or to spice up your next pasta sauce? You can buy MexiLove here.

Other cocktail recommendations from Joanna include MexiLove Bloody Mary and even an ice lolly with MexiLove


About the autor:

Yascha Roshani

Yascha Roshani

Mitgründer von Honest & Rare

Linkedin URL

Mich begeistern Getränke aller Art. Ob Bier, Gin, Weinbrand, Cold Brew Kaffee oder Limo. Vor allem liebe ich die Kultur, regionalen Bezüge und Herstellung von Getränken. Selbst braue ich ab und an Bier, setze Liköre an und röste Kaffee in der Pfanne.