Cocalero Herbal Liqueur Review

by Daniel Galyean

A liqueur made with Coca leaves? With the eye catching glow of the liquid, the beautiful artwork, and the thought of trying a spirit infused with Coca leaves (illegal in the US) my interest was piqued.

While the mesmerizing green glow is enhanced by the artificial coloring rather than purely by the Coca leaves themselves, the idea behind Cocalero is brilliant and will convince most people to try it at least once.

The brand’s name honors the coca leaf farmers that have been cultivating the versatile crop for 8,000 years in the Andes Mountains. Coca leaves have been cultivated for centuries as an essential part of the rich heritage and history of the area due to the leaves purported abilities to relieve altitude sickness, combat hunger, and promote energy and stamina. The spirit is made by combining the coca leaves with a variety of botanicals including ginseng, lavender, orange peel and green tea. To harness the complex flavors and oils from the botanicals the company uses a delicate steam distillation process. The rare blend of flavors are sturdy enough to stand on their own served ice cold, or can be introduced as a replacement for other spirits in a traditional cocktail.

Tasting Notes

Nose- Orange zest, melon, mint, honey and smidge of tart green apple.

Palate- Sweet tea, limes, tingling mint and a hint of anise

Finish- Smooth and lingering the botanical notes of mint and anise continue to engulf the palate.

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