This cluttered cantina is famed for its cheese-spiked, raisin-flavored liqueur.
As you meander along the cobblestoned streets of Barrio de los Sapos in Puebla, Mexico, it can be easy to miss this tiny bar. But those who know of La Pasita make their way to the store’s cluttered countertop for a shot of its famed eponymous liqueur.
Passing through the Talavera-tiled doorway, the visitor finds a small space with a thin bar, behind which an old beat-up refrigerator boasts Mickey Mouse magnets and a handwritten menu. Bric-a-brac from near and far makes each wall and surface a place for exploration. From a Steve Urkel figurine to masks to silk-caped marionettes, the bar itself looks like an all-encompassing altar. Owner Emilio Contreras Aicardo displays the knickknacks he’s collected on his travels, alongside other paraphernalia and bottles of house-made liqueur. Aicardo purchased the former grocery store (El Gallo de Oro, or the Golden Rooster) in 1960, changing the name to La Pasita in honor of what would become his trademark beverage.
Pasita is a raisin-flavored liqueur, served with a skewered cube of fresh goat’s milk cheese and a soaked raisin. Some say that beverage was at first ordered according to how many blocks a drinker could walk after consuming a certain amount of the booze (e.g., “Two blocks of pasita please!”). While the bar is most known for its namesake tipple, an assortment of fascinatingly flavored (and titled) liqueurs line the countertop and shelves. A bottle of Sangre de Brujas (“witches’ blood”) for example, holds a tasty duo of blackberry and hibiscus liqueurs, while the Sangre de Artista (“artist’s blood”) is a concoction of quince and apricot booze. Those in the mood for a unique sweet can try Aicardo’s rompope, an eggnog-like beverage. Each drink comes served in a tall shot glass, called a caballito (“little horse”). A few have garnishes, while others are composed of layered liqueurs, their different viscosities separating in the glass to form multicolored tiers.
Know Before You Go
Although a popular spot, the bar is open only from 12:30 p.m. to 5:30p.m., and closed on Tuesdays.
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