While the iconic snack food always delivers a cheesy, crunchy bite, the first ever Doritos Nacho Cheese spirit is shaking up cocktail hour. In collaboration with Empirical, this unique beverage offers versatility with a unique taste that will have everyone excited to pick up a glass.
Flavor infused liquors have prime space on the shelf. Beyond fruit forward options and sweet varieties, many beverage brands have moved into other flavor infusions. For example, Lay’s Chips offered a vodka. Blending food and beverages into a special offering is becoming more popular.
The Doritos Nacho Cheese spirit is a collaboration with Empirical. Unlike other beverage brands, this “uncategorized spirit” is not a gin, whiskey, or tequila. The company believes its ability to be free from the particular restraints of each spirit allows them more freedom. While it might not fit into a particular label, the beverage does have a “pilsner malt beer base.”
Since the Empirical brand exists in this uncategorized spirits’ world, it lends itself to the playfulness that this Doritos Nacho Cheese spirit offers. To create this special spirit, Empirical used real Doritos chips during the vacuum distillation process. The result is a nacho cheese flavor that comes through in every sip.
The reality is that drinking this beverage is meant to bring that cheesy, salty note that people know and love. There is no concern about the potential orangey fingers or crumbs on the shirt. Although it can be sipped on its own, it seems to be more enjoyable when transformed into a cocktail.
From a take on a Bloody Mary to a spin on a margarita, the options are many. Even though there is an inherent spicy, cheesy, salty note, it seems to meld well with other flavors. Basically, for a cocktail that needs a little umami kick, it should work well.
Here are two cocktail suggestions using the Empirical Doritos Nacho Cheese spirit.
Double Triangle Margarita
- 1 oz Empirical x Doritos Nacho Cheese Spirit
- 1 oz blanco tequila
- .75 oz fresh lime juice
- .75 oz agave syrup (3:1)
- Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake hard for 10 to 12 seconds. Strain into a rocks glass over ice. Garnish with a Tajín salt rim and a lime wheel.
- 1.5 oz Empirical x Doritos Nacho Cheese Spirit
- .5 oz tequila
- 3 oz tomato juice
- 1 barspoon lemon juice
- 1 barspoon Worcestershire sauce
- Big pinch of celery salt
- Big pinch of cracked black pepper
- Tiny pinch of cayenne
- Build all ingredients in a Collins glass. Add ice and pass a barspoon through the drink 3 to 4 times. Garnish with pepperoncini, seasoned celery and a pickled onion.
The Empirical Doritos Nacho Cheese spirit is available for online pre-orders starting on December 13, 2023. In addition, it will be available in select New York and California markets. A bottle retails for $65 and has a 42% ABV.