Michelada Shrub // Pacific Pickle Works // Santa Barbara, CA
For all the flavor of a top-tier taco, Mexican beer is typically as bland as Baja bathwater, meant to rinse out the spice of a good meal, not compete with it. But when you’d rather drink with a kick of its own, the michelada’s your man. A liquid lunch — a taco in boozy form — the michelada is the Superman to simple suds’ Clark Kent, a beer in a lucha libre mask. They can be simple — a splash of hot sauce, a spritz of lime — or they can be complex as a jungle of pickle spears, peppers, even clam juice. Pacific Pickle Works makes one of the best, and they make it easy: just dump an ounce of shrub into a salt-rimmed pint glass, top with lager, and enjoy.