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El Día de los Muertos is not a Mexican version of Halloween, though the two holidays do share some traditions, including costumes and parades. On the Day of the Dead, it’s believed that the border between the spirit world and the real world dissolve. A blend of Mesoamerican ritual, European religion and Spanish culture, the holiday is celebrated each year from October 31- November 2.  

November 1 is “el Dia de los innocents,” or the day of the children, and All Saints Day. November 2 is All Souls Day or the Day of the Dead. According to tradition, the gates of heaven are opened at midnight on October 31 and the spirits of children can rejoin their families for 24 hours. The spirits of adults do the same on November 2 and return to the living world to feast, drink, dance, and play music with their loved ones. In turn, the living family members treat the deceased as honored guests and leave the deceased’s favorite foods and other offerings at gravesites or on the ofrendas built in their homes. Ofrendas can be decorated with candles, bright marigolds called cempasuchil and red cock’s combs alongside food like stacks of tortillas and fruit.


The most prominent symbols related to the Day of the Dead are calacas (skeletons) and calaveras (skulls). In the early 19th century, the printer and cartoonist José Guadalupe Posada re-envisioned Mictecacíhuatl (the Aztec goddess of the underworld) as a female skeleton known as La Calavera Catrina, now the most recognizable Day of the Dead icon.  


During contemporary Day of the Dead festivities, people commonly wear skull masks and eat sugar candy molded into the shape of skulls. The pan de ánimas of All Souls Day rituals in Spain is reflected in pan de muerto, the traditional sweet baked good of Day of the Dead celebrations today. Other food and drink associated with the holiday, but consumed year-round as well, include spicy dark chocolate and the corn-based liquor called atole. 

Source: History.com

Cocktail by Terry Cermak


The Cocktail:


(aka: the Day of the Dead) 

Inspired by the gin-based cocktail classic “the Corpse Reviver #2: 

  • 2 1/2 oz. Dulce Vida Lime Blanco Tequla
  • 2 oz orange liqueur (like Naranja)
  • 2 oz Cocchi Americano
  • a squeeze of lemon

Add all ingredients into a shaker filled with ice and shake vigorously for 30 seconds. prepare a chilled cocKtail glass with a salt rim if that’s your thing. Strain the drink into the glass and garnish with a spiral of orange peel.