The Newest Summer Booze Trend: Kalimotxo (You Won’t Believe What’s in It!)


Sometimes, we Americans are slow to adopt trends from overseas. But one longstanding European drink tradition is starting to gain a foothold here in the US. It’s a Spanish cocktail called kalimotxo or calimocho, and you might be surprised to hear how popular it is once you learn what’s in it.

You wouldn’t think that cheap red wine cut with Coca-Cola would be so tasty, but that’s exactly what’s in a kalimotxo. People in Spain, particularly in the Basque region, have been drinking it since at least the 1970s. But it’s not just a Spanish thing, according to a recent article over at the Huffington Post.

“In Romania it is known as motorină (diesel fuel). In the former Yugoslav nations it’s known as bambus (bamboo). In the Czech Republic it’s called houba (mushroom). In Hungary it is called vadász (hunter) or vörösboros kóla (red-wine cola),” the article reveals, adding that the ideal blend for the drink is a cup filled with ice and a 50/50 mixture of Coke and wine.

The team over at RedEye Chicago suggests trying the mix at your next beach party. Dump out half the Coke from a 2-liter bottle, replace it with red wine, and you’re set to get drunk, incognito. You can also try adding a twist of lime or lemon, or adding a dash of Ouzo to kick things up a notch, authentic Basque style. Some people also add blackberry liqueur for a variation on the same theme. As long as it has plenty of ice, it will be surprisingly palatable.

If the current buzz is any indication, Americans of all ages (not just desperate teens) may finally be adopting this old-school cocktail classic from the Continent. So watch out this summer: the next drink you get offered at a BBQ may just be one of these dark, unusual punches.

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