2 Aesthetician-Approved Cocktails That Let You Drink and Still Be Healthy

Updated: June 22, 2017

Originally Published: May 1, 2017

Bar director Josh Curtis at Malibu Beach Inn’s Carbon Beach Club restaurant is all about “curation” when it comes to his cocktails—a move he says allows his drinks to cut back on sugar, and by default, makes them a little bit healthier than your average alcohol-based beverage. (Bonus: The main ingredient in both is George Clooney's Casamigos Tequila, which he sold yesterday for $1 billion!)

“Our main objective is to curate cocktails with perfect synchronization, intentionally balancing natural citrus and sweet. This creates a harmony of flavors but also eliminates the need for excess sugar in the process,” he says. “Early on in my career, I worked with chefs who encouraged juicing fresh ingredients from the local farmers’ markets. Once you have your base, expanding on the flavors is easy and fun.”

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It’s those natural, quality ingredients, Curtis says, that help magnify the flavor profile of a drink. “And while fruit is obviously delicious, vegetables have their own nuances and tastes that were previously underrated. It’s so great as a bartender to be able to get creative with all the local California produce. At the same time, vegetables help increase hydration while eliminating toxins, which facilitate an even more satiating imbibing experience that would otherwise be lost while sipping on a standard soda libation.”

Celebrity aesthetician and the skin care expert at the spa, Veronica Barton Schwartz, is also a big fan of the vegetable-based cocktails and the bar created a cocktail (aptly named the "Veronica") just for her. "I always have it and it’s delicious—no hangover the next day. Of course, everything in moderation.”

The Veronica

.75 oz Passion Fruit Puree

.75 oz Lavender Syrup

2 oz Casamigos Tequila Blanco

Shake and strain over ice in a 10.5 oz. glass. Garnish with lavender.

She also says that, if you’re going to drink alcohol, and you’re worried about things like skin dehydration, silver (not aged) tequila is the best for you. “You need to start with a quality tequila. Tequila is made from the blue agave plant. Being someone with blood sugar sensitivities, I believe that tequila is better for the body than other alcohols. The sugars are simple sugars, so they break down easily in you body. They say a small amount can break down dietary fat, which can help lower LDL levels, the bad cholesterol.”

In another move to "keep it healthier," Curtis' bar changes out the cocktail menu with each season and makes most of the “mixes” in the kitchen (as opposed to coming out of a pre-made can). “So with all the incredible local produce coming in this spring, we’ve concocted some interesting combinations, other than juices.”

“Devising delicious drinks is like pulling lyrics and melodies to write a good song. My hope is that it's a hit and keeps people singing.”


Playa Access

2 oz Casamigos Tequila blanco

.75 oz house made, freshly squeezed lime juice

.75 oz house made simple syrup

.75 oz freshly juiced cucumbers from the Santa Monica Farmers’ Market

Shake it five or so times

Hawthorne strain up in a coupe glass

Cucumber wheel garnish

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