The Mayayo, consisting of Gin Katun, sour orange, guava and lemon leaves, is a signature drink at Zapote, the elegant, fun bar at the Rosewood Mayakoba hotel in Playa del Carmen, on the Yucatan peninsula in Mexico, says bar-meister Joshua Monaghan. “It is an extremely easy cocktail to drink, which comes in handy in our tropical setting,” he says. “Full of citrus, it’s just a fresh cocktail for any time of day.” We see no reason to doubt him, and, frankly, want one right now.
Monaghan, whose name doesn’t exactly sound Mexican, nonetheless was born and raised there, in Léon, Guanajuato. He spent three years at Fifty Mils, the innovative cocktail bar at the Four Seasons in Mexico City, which is considered one of the best bars in the country. (That’s a “note to self” piece of information right there.)
He was appointed bar director at the Mayakoba in 2021, and feels that the Zapote Bar is a “love letter to the Yucatán,” and that the bar’s distinguishing factors are “gracious service and using Mayan ingredients, tools, and techniques.” He knows his techniques — he’s won a few cocktail competitions (and these are fiercely contested, I recently learned).
It features a cordial garden and Katun gin. We add all the ingredients to a shaker with ice, then apply my trademark throwing technique – a 360-degree long-pour nicknamed “The Monaghan Throw” — 4 or 5 times. It’s served in a Nick & Nora glass and aromatized with a twist of sour orange.
The ingredients and technique in creating a cocktail are equally important elements. The Mayayo is a perfect example of this.
The Mayayo is a reinterpretation of a classic cocktail with local ingredients, in which we use local Gin Katun, which is full of aromas and flavors of the region. The cordial comes together with ingredients from our on-property garden.
It was invented by Yayo Nava, hence the name Mayayo, a mix of Yayo’s ingenuity and Mayan ingredients.
- 2 oz Gin Katún
- 1 oz Cordial from the Garden (made in-house by boiling and straining herbs from our “La Ceiba” garden along with locally produced bitter orange and lime peel)
- Bitter orange peel as garnish
Add all ingredients in a shaker with plenty of ice, shake vigorously and strain on a previously chilled glass with no ice. Squeeze a twist of bitter orange onto the cocktail as garnish.