So you didn’t chug a Gatorade before going to sleep last night. We forgive you, but your body probably doesn’t. As a public service to the hungover, every week we track down the best bartenders in America and ask them to share their favorite hair-of-the-dog remedies. This week we’ve got a twist on the classic Pimm’s Cup that includes an ingredient that Austin, Texas, locals can’t live without.

THE SPECIALIST: Alana Zanello, bar manager of Jacoby’s in Austin, Texas

HER ELIXIR: PIMM’S CUP

ITS ORIGINS: TopoChico is a sparkling mineral water from Mexico with a mystical origin story. According to legend, an Aztec princess with a life-threatening disease was healed after drinking water near a volcano in Monterrey. Locals soon flocked to the spring to partake in their own healings, and in 1895 the TopoChico company began bottling it for export. However, it didn’t arrive in the U.S. until the 1990s. “Essentially it’s the Mexican San Pellegrino,” Zanello says. The bubbly drink is wildly popular in Austin, Texas, which is only 225 miles from the border. “Everyone here drinks it.”

ITS HEALING POWERS: A Pimm’s Cup (Pimm’s, lemon, cucumber and ginger ale) is a usual suspect for A.M. boozing because it aids digestion. “The bitters and ginger in the drink are helpful for settling a stomach after a night of drinking or after filling up your belly with brunch,” Zanello says. To give the drink an Austin flair, she swapped out the traditional ginger ale component for a stronger ginger liqueur and a splash of TopoChico, which is packed with magnesium, potassium, manganese and sodium. The liqueur and water combo basically recreates the ginger ale, but with a nod toward the local crowd. “When making a classic cocktail, you should always keep in mind where you are regionally,” she says.

THREE INGREDIENTS EVERY WORTHWHILE HAIR OF THE DOG MUST INCLUDE: “Bubbles, bitters and something really sweet to sugar shock you,” Zanello says.

PIMM’S CUP

Add all ingredients except TopoChico to a mixing glass. Stir. Pour into a Collins glass filled with ice. Top with TopoChico, a slice of cucumber and a sprig of mint.


Alyson Sheppard is the resident hangover specialist at Playboy.com. Follow her on Twitter: @amshep