Day to Night Cocktails: A Tequila Sunrise and Sunset

05/20/2014 at 05:02 PM ET

Tequila Sunrise and Tequila Sunset recipes
Left: Courtesy MyGourmetConnection; Right: Courtesy Make Me a Cocktail

Sunrise, sunset. Both occasions should have a cocktail to celebrate them, right?

We’re (sort of) joking about the drinking at sunrise part, but we do love the idea of the classic tequila sunrise having a tequila sunset counterpart.

In the standard drink, a mixture of tequila, orange juice and grenadine, the latter ingredient — a non-alcoholic, cherry-flavored syrup — is so dense that it (when poured carefully!) will separate itself from the OJ, sinking neatly to the bottom.

But there’s a trick to get a rich red hue at the top of your glass: use soda water dyed with food coloring. Since water is less dense than juice, it will float on top of the glass. Plus, the cocktail will be less syrupy than the traditional version, if super-sweet drinks aren’t your thing.

Below, find a recipe for the classic tequila sunrise, courtesy of food blog MyGourmetConnection. Then, take a stab at flipping the colors into a sunset. Both drinks are simple and refreshing — perfect for summer sipping.

Tequila Sunrise recipe
Courtesy MyGourmetConnection

Tequila Sunrise
Makes 1

1½ oz. tequila
3 oz. orange juice
Grenadine, to taste
Orange slice, for garnish

Fill a sugar-rimmed rocks glass with ice. Add the tequila, then orange juice. Drizzle with grenadine, pouring slowly against the back of a spoon near the rim of the glass, allowing the liquid to sink to the bottom of the drink. Garnish with an orange slice.

 

Tequila Sunset recipe
Courtesy Make Me a Cocktail

Tequila Sunset
Makes 1

1½ oz. tequila
3-4 oz. orange juice
Soda water, to taste

1. Using red food coloring, tint your soda water until it’s the desired shade of red. Set aside.

2. Half fill a highball glass with ice cubes and pour in the tequila. Top up with orange juice and stir. Slowly drizzle with tinted soda water, pouring slowly against the back of a spoon near the rim of the glass, allowing the liquid to float.

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