MCA Café’s A-MAIZ-ING Cocktail Recipe

The MCA Café’s intricately crafted drink, inspired by Anna Tsouhlarakis: Indigenous Absurdities, marries the exhibition with mixology.

MCA Café’s A-MAIZ-ING cocktail
Photo by Connor Stehr.

“The drink is simultaneously savory from the grain alcohol, mildly sweet from the corn, and spicy from the Tajín rim.”—Dylan Woods, food and beverage manager, MCA Café

A-MAIZ-ING Cocktail

Course Cocktail
Servings 1


  • 1 oz. Leopold’s Silver Tree Small Batch Vodka
  • 1 oz. Nixta Liqueur de Elote
  • ¾ oz. fresh lime juice
  • ½ oz. sweet corn-infused simple syrup


  • Add ingredients into a shaker with ice and shake well.
  • Strain over fresh ice into a Tajín-rimmed glass.
Print Recipe
Dylan Woods
Photo by Connor Stehr.

Ask the Food & Beverage Manager: Dylan Woods

What was the inspiration for the A-maiz-ing cocktail?
“All of our cocktails are inspired by the museum’s current exhibitions. We research the exhibition, the artist, and their background and think about how we could give people a taste of the art. This drink is inspired by the Anna Tsouhlarakis: Indigenous Absurdities exhibition at MCA right now. She is an Indigenous artist, and maize is such a staple in their cooking.”

Do you have any tips for making this drink at home?
“Fresh ingredients are always best for strong flavor profiles, so squeezing the lime juice right before you mix your drink and homemaking the corn syrup are important steps. To make the corn syrup, boil sweet corn in water, remove the corn, and then add simple syrup to the water. It should be one part corn water and half part simple syrup. This way, the drink is not overly sweet. Then, we garnish with Tajín—a nod back to Anna—to balance out the sweetness.”

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What are three words you would use to describe MCA?
“Contemporary. Adventurous. Youthful.”

What is your favorite thing about MCA Café?
“It’s a tie between the innovative cocktail program’s connection to the arts and the stunning view. The café is on the roof with wraparound outdoor seating.”