Alan’s Tears—Featured Cocktail at the Lakehouse


A scene that makes Alan cry like a baby!

Alan doesn’t do spicy. I, on the other hand, adore hot, spicy foods, especially cocktails. Whenever we go out, I scan the drink menu for a spicy cocktail to try. Even though Alan can’t handle spicy, for some reason, he always has to try a sip, which makes him whine and cry!

When we were dating, we went to Gregory Gourdet’s (of Top Chef Session 12 fame) Departure Restaurant in Portland (my favorite restaurant), for drinks. They used to serve a Thai chile-infused ginger beer drink called a Tacho Macho and Alan insisted on trying it. Alan picked up the drink, took a big sip, burned his mouth, and in his haste to get the glass out of his hands, spilled the entire drink all over the bar—I hadn’t even had a taste of it yet! The bartender generously made me another one, laughing at Alan who was holding his mouth and whimpering in the seat next to me! He’s never learned his lesson, and still insists on trying a sip of my spicy drink—I just no longer let him pick the glass up off the bar top anymore!

Alan’s Tears, inspired by Alan’s reaction to spicy cocktails, is basically a spicy Paloma, a refreshing Mexican cocktail made with tequila, grapefruit and lime juices, sugar syrup, and sparkling water. However, I recently discovered chile-infused vodka, and have been making Alan’s Tears with this. Chile vodka is very simple to make and is a great way to use up leftover or aging chilies. Simply slice the chilies, jalapeno, habanero, serrano, etc., place in a quart mason jar, and cover with vodka. You can also add the core, seeds, membrane, and stem end of bell peppers to this as well, which is a great use of what would otherwise be wasted. Put the lid on it and let the peppers infuse in the vodka at least a couple of days or up to a week, depending on the heat of your chilies and the level of spiciness you want. Take a taste every day or so to see where it’s at. Once your happy with it, strain out the solids and store in a glass bottle. You can also infuse tequila with peppers using the same technique.

It’s easy to make your own pepper-infused liquor! By the way, this Duvall Distillary Vodka is the BEST, made in Duvall, WA with spring water from an artesian well in Lynnwood, WA. They’ll even take back their bottles to sanitize and reuse, so Zero Waste! Check them out!

It’s completely up to you if you want to use tequila, vodka, pepper-infused vodka, or pepper-infused tequila in this drink.

How to Make Alan’s Tears

Ingredients and tools needed for Alan’s Tears.

Here’s the ingredients for making Alan’s Tears:

  • Tequila, Vodka, or Pepper Infused Tequila or Vodka, your choice
  • St. Germain or other Elderflower Liqueur
  • Sanpellegrino Pompelmo Sparkling Fruit Beverage (most grocery stores carry this)
  • Hot peppers of choice, I like jalapenos and habaneros, but you can use serranos, Thai chilies, etc.
  • Ice

Tools needed:

  • Cutting board and knife
  • Cocktail jigger or other cocktail measuring device
  • Cocktail shaker
  • Cocktail strainer, if your shaker doesn’t have one built-in
  • Collins or other tall drink glass

Muddling the peppers.

Cut the peppers into slices and put into your cocktail shaker. I do about three nice slices of jalapeno and a couple slices of habanero. Add tequila or vodka of choice, St. Germain, and ice, then muddle well to break up the peppers.

Lid the cocktail shaker and shake vigorously.

Strain the muddled and shaken mixture over ice in a Collins glass.

Pour peppered alcohol over ice.

Top the glass off with chilled Sanpellegrino Pompelmo Sparkling Fruit Beverage and stir.

Topping off with Pompelmo.

Garnish with slices of pepper used in the cocktail and enjoy!

Enjoying an Alan’s Tears on the Lakehouse deck.

If you can’t find the Sanpellegrino Pompelmo, you can make this with grapefruit soda or grapefruit juice, some simple syrup, and sparkling water as a substitute, which would be equally delicious.

If you like a spicy drink, give these a try! And make some hot pepper infused vodka too, as it is wonderful in Alan’s Tears as well as Bloody Mary’s with Vegan Worcestershire Sauce and Tomato Juice.


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5 from 2 votes

Alan's Tears Cocktail

Inspired by Alan's inability to handle hot peppery drinks, this spicy, sweet, citrusy cocktail is a featured drink here at the Lakehouse. We serve them up all summer long for drinks on the deck. Use as little or as much fresh hot pepper to suit your, or your guests, taste. They'll be a popular drink at your house too!
Course Drinks
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Nut-Free, Party, Soy-Free
Keyword Jalapeno
Author Cindy Thompson, MS, NBC-HWC | Trimazing! Health & Lifestyle Coaching



  • Combine vodka or tequila and St. Germain in a cocktail shaker with hot pepper slices, to taste. Muddle well.
  • Add ice and shake.
  • Strain into a Collins or other tall glass with ice.
  • Garnish with a slice of hot pepper.


The amount and type of hot peppers you use will depend on the heat of your peppers and the tolerance of your tastebuds!

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  1. AMGill on August 20, 2019 at 9:17 am

    5 stars
    I made this last night and loved it! Tell Alan thank you 😉 . For me I used Tequilla since Vodka doesn’t sit well with me and LOTS of jalapenos. I had never tried St. Germain before and what a glorious sweet smooth taste. Thanks for another great recipe. Your creations are the best!

    • Cindy Thompson, Trimazing! Vegan Lifestyle & Health Coaching on August 20, 2019 at 9:32 am

      Fantastic! I love it with tequila too, making it a lot like a spicy Paloma. Thank you so much for sharing!

5 from 2 votes (1 rating without comment)

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